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Moving overseas


#1

I’m planning to expat from US to a country with a 220 volts AC, 50Hz
standard.

I really want to bring all my electric tools, but am concerned if
they’ll work.

Can anyone offer a clue?

Paf Dvorak


#2

Simple, add up all the wattage of your electric tools @ 110 V AC then
devide by half to get the equivalent power at 220/240V.

then aquire a 110V to 220 V transformer in the country you plan to
move to, that has this capacity in output plus 10%.

all your tools will be fine.

However, you may have to bring with you an adapter with enough
outlets for your existing tools as plugs vary from country to
country.

Welcome to the old world.


#3

Hi Paf

It should be fine for single phase not sure about 3 phase if you
have any gear that runs on it. I have a step down transformer up to
600w, which works fine for the equipment I’ve imported from the
States. It’s 50 cycles down here (NZ) same in Aussie and Europe I
believe. I think the only thing it would affect would be a clock or
instrument that ran on 60 cycles. It would most probably run slow but
I could be wrong (I’m sure someone will correct me if I am) all the
motors I have at 110v run fine withthe transformer. You could always
get in touch with the manufacturers to make sure. Cheers Chris


#4
I'm planning to expat from US to a country with a 220 volts AC,
50Hz standard. 

I did that for 25 years and 8 countries. I burned out a nice Baldor
polishing motor using it on a transformer in Spain? The 50 hz was the
problem. Didn’t have a problem with the microwave nor the sewing
machine and my flex shaft survived. If you are in a major city with a
US embassy or consulatetry to get their newsletter as there were
usually people leaving and selling transformers, which, if bought
locally, were often twice the price.

Donna in VA


#5

Depends on which area of the world. If it’s Asia you can buy
transformers fairly easy but not cheap for the size to run machinery.
I did the opposite, moved from a 220 country to a 110. Brought some
electrics but they are not happy. I wish I had just sold them and
started new here. Also you need to consider customs duty fees of the
new country. Some are strict and buy the time you pay for shipping
and then customs duty it would be easier and maybe cheaper to buy new
there.

Sharron, in Mexico with 110 volts


#6

heavy motors are the only issue, as Donna mentioned…sometimes
the 50 hz can put undue strain on a motor. I actually was worried
about the opposite when I moved back from Norway to the USA. but the
guys at Diamond Pacific informed me it was the opposite issue. my 220
v/50hz grinder would work fine on 220 volt/60 hz here, but if I had
taken a 110 volt one from here to there, it could burn it out…
You should check with the country you are moving to however. Some
are stricter on regulations on equipment than others. In Norway, they
had something called “UL approved” which meant it was considered ok
to run there. That would also include checking whether or not you can
get the converters here and take over, or if you have to buy them
there to get them to meet local standards. There may also be rules
about whether or not it is grounded or not. Some equipment is also
rated for either 50/60 hz, so check the specs on your machinery.

Jeanne


#7

I should have said the name of the country.

If anyone has any specific info regarding HK can you let me know?

I’m planning to expat from US to a country HK which delivers 220
volts AC, 50Hz standard.

I really want to bring all my electric tools, but am concerned if
they’ll work.

Can anyone offer a clue?

Paf


#8

Paf, email me and I’ll give you the name of my old friend in
Lancaster UK.

He’s a former repairman in the weaving mill industry and should be
able to talk to you about this.

John


#9

buy a few adapters and check with your consulate in the places you
are going to- many times travellers willl leave their transformers
and/or adapters with their offices and are given free when available.
Some of your items may however work with a given power system- check
with the manufacturer of x equipment as to their selling to where it
is you are going- they are the best advice on an individual item. rer


#10

Paf,

Heating elements work fine with just a converter. they do not
require a transformer, which are bigger, heavier, and more
expensive.

Motors require a transformer. You can’t do anything about the
cycles, so motorized items WILL SIMPLY RUN SLOWER. I have not found
the difference problematic in sewing machine, polishing motor, or
flex shaft.

Do check the cost of transformers where you are going. Big ones are
very heavy to ship, and can cost as much as the US price of the
tool! As a general rule, it is healthier for the tool if it is used
on the current and cycles it was made for i. e., without a converter
or transformer and on the proper cycles.

If you do take a lot of 110V tools, it would be more
efficient/economical to put a large transformer on one (or more)
outlets rather than having separate small ones for each tool.

Janet in Jerusalem


#11

If you know that 220 has 3 wires usually 2 the same color and one
differentcolor. The different colored wire is the natural or ground
wire in the fuse box. The other two are your hot wires. Each one of
them cares 110 volts. thus the two together give you 220 v. that
said if you only want 110 v connect one wire to the buss bar on the
side with all the other wires connectedto it (that is your neutral
wire) then connect one wire to one side of a circuit breaker or
directly to the incoming main wires going to the circuit breakers.
make sure you first kill all power to the circuit breaker box before
you try to connect directly to the incoming wires as they will be
HOT if you did not cut the power off before it got there…

If you choose to connect to the circuit breaker which is my
preferred way for those who do not know much about electrical
wiring. You can simply turn off that circuit breaker. Do be careful
though. Wear rubber sole shoes and use plastic handle screw
drivers…

You will then be able to run wires from the circuit breaker to
another box which you should have a 110v circuit breaker in that is
no larger then the circuit breaker you connected to… Most electrical
wiring to out let plugs are of a 12 gauge for most equipmentunless
you get into large amp draws then you will want to use heavier
wiring. Never is always best. No chance of overheating it and
causing a fire… Hope this helps…

Not Rocket Science… :slight_smile:


#12
If you know that 220 has 3 wires usually 2 the same color and one
differentcolor. The different colored wire is the natural or
ground wire in the fuse box. The other two are your hot wires. Each
one of them cares 110 volts. thus the two together give you 220 v.
that said if you only want 110 v connect one wire to the buss bar
on the side with all the other wires connectedto it (that is your
neutral wire) then connect one wire to one side of a circuit
breaker or directly to the incoming main wires going to the circuit
breakers. make sure you first kill all power to the circuit
breaker box before you try to connect directly to the incoming
wires as they will be HOT if you did not cut the power off before
it got there." 

This is so wrong! The intentions of people of this forum are without
a doubt good, however.

Get proper from the land you’re going to concerning the
wiring diagram i. e. coloring of electric circuits.

The used colors I know of (for Belgium, Germany, Netherlands) for
220VAC 50Hz circuits are:

Yellow/green = ground
Blue = neutral wire
Brown = Hot wire
White and red are switching wires (for example :swithing of one item
with several swithes)

Don’t monkey around with electrical wiring if you don’t know about
it.

Insurance will let you down when you change circuitry of your or a
house.

Neutral and ground wire is not the same wire.

The ground wire is connected to the earth, wherever it is.

The neutral wire -aswell as the brown wire- is connected to the
electricity company or provider.

Some country’s work with two wires for 220V carrying 110V on each of
them, but not all country’s do so.

Opposite fases make 220VAC out of it.

Electricity is not rocket sience but country’s have their own rules
Some of them are flexible others are straight forward.

Some are flexible untill something happends and one have to pay for
the damage.

Be carefull and act wise, you’re not dealing with a 9V battery.

Here is a link of colorcodes but still, get in contact with a local
provider. http://www.ganoksin.com/gnkurl/ep80ez

Regards


#13
The different colored wire is the natural or ground wire in the
fuse box. The other two are your hot wires. Each one of them cares
110 volts. thus the two together give you 220 v 

That is true of US 220v outlets, but not of European.

Al Balmer


#14
Yellow/green = ground
Blue = neutral wire
Brown = Hot wire
White and red are switching wires (for example :swithing of one
item with several swithes)" 

I have to correct myself! Instead of the brown colored wire it is the
black wire which act as the hot wire.

The brown wire is used in multiple fases (380V circuits).

Sorry for the wrong

Regards


#15

I’m not sure which countries you are referring to where there is a
110 - 220 volt system with two actives and one common neutral outside
of North America. As far as I can tell the 220 volt system in most of
Europe and the 240 system in the UK, Australia, New Zealand there are
usually three wires active coloured either red or brown, neutral
coloured either black or blue and earth coloured either green or
green and yellow stripes. Double insulated appliances may use only
two wires (active and neutral) and be connected to either a two pin
(no earth pin) plug or a three pin plug. I am most familiar with the
power distribution system in Australia where the power on the grid is
three phase with three actives and a common neutral.

With this system three phase power can be supplied to consumers in
the form of 240 volts between any of the actives and the neutral or
415 volts between any pair of actives. Three phase motors are more
compact and efficient than single phase ones and large welders are
made to be connected to a three phase supply.Commonly domestic
consumers have more than one phase connected to their main
switchboard.

I know that some of my tools such as my wax pen as well as laptop
computer and other electronics can run either on 110 or 240 volts
either by a power supply switch or a voltage sensing power supply.
Motors are a different matter. Induction motors used in such
equipment as polishing motors will run at a different speed on a 50hz
and 60hz supply and need to be supplied with the correct voltage.
Motors intended to run on a 60hz supply, even if supplied with the
correct voltage, will run hotter on a 50hz supply.

Universal motors such as use in flex shaft machines need the correct
voltage and again will run hotter on a 50hz supply than a 60hz one.

Beyond a certain point is it is probably better to alter (e. g.,
replace motors) or replace equipment rather than go down the route of
using transformers that are expensive and bulky when a lot of power
is involved.

For a flex shaft where the power consumption is fairly modest a
transformer might be a good idea but a polishing motor might be a
different matter because the motor will still run hotter.

All the best
Jenifer Gow


#16
Get proper from the land you're going to concerning
the wiring diagram i. e. coloring of electric circuits. 

I’m not by any means an electrician, but even if I knew the proper
colors coding, I’m not sure I’d want to rely upon some unknown
electricians knowledge of proper color codes and would instead (or
also) pay attention to which wires are connected to what?

Paf Dvorak


#17

The colors of the wiring of electrical appliances in Europe changed
in 2004,so it depends what year the wiring was done…:-)…
Particularly tricky in UK because both blue and black were
switched!!!

Never go by the colors. test for yourself. You can do this with a
cheap little screwdriver ‘tester’. Touch it to the wire in the wall.
If it lights up, that’s the hot one. If it doesn’t, it’s neutral.

Janet in Jerusalem


#18
Never go by the colors. test for yourself. You can do this with a
cheap little screwdriver 'tester'. Touch it to the wire in the
wall. 
If it lights up, that's the hot one. If it doesn't, it's neutral. 

True. But we’re talking about connecting up a new breaker box and
splitting the 240v to 120v per side.

(And I’m still confused as to how that will run my 110v stuff
safely. What about those extra 10v’s?)

Paf Dvorak


#19

If your moving to the UK, Ill be happy to help.

As Im off grid and do all my own wiring etc.

Have to have it right!!.


#20
 (And I'm still confused as to how that will run my 110v stuff
safely. What about those extra 10v's?)

Don’t worry about 10V.

The powerline never produce exactly 110VAC or 220VAC.

It depends where your house is located (close or furhter away from a
distribution point) howmany houses are ‘provided’ with a particular
powerline and howmany KWatts are used at that moment.

“Save” is the moment where an elephant enters a porcelan store.

Regards