Do You Need Just an Adapter? Or An Adapter and a Converter?

Published On August 16, 2017 | By Lisa Patterson | Technology

You may already know that different places, and even different appliances, often have different plug types. However, with those plug types also comes different voltage requirements. This is important to know since many adapters for plugs don’t also come with voltage conversion. So you need to know if you need just an adapter, or a converter as well.

You Need a Converter if Your Voltage Range Isn’t Covered

Most electronics will have a voltage range they can cover. You’ll usually find it listed somewhere on your device. The larger the range, the less likely you will need a converter. The more narrow the range, the more of a need for a converter.

In North America and Japan, the voltage range requirement is between 100v and 127v. Just about everywhere else on the planet, the range is 220v to 240v. If your electronic devices list a range that can cover everything between 100v and 240v, you can use it just about anywhere on the planet with nothing more than an adapter.

If the voltage requirement is only one number or a short range, then you will need a voltage converter. Usually, a 110 to 220v converter will work best for you.

You Need an Adapter to Change Plug Type

Adapters typically have to deal with the outlet and plug type, rather than any specific electrical requirements. If you’re going from North America to another country, you will usually need an adapter.

The reverse is true as well. The plug you have for your device may have the wrong prong setup, so you cannot plug it in when you get to a new location. In such cases, you will need an adapter.

Adapter and Converters at Home

Sometimes, travel abroad has nothing to do with whether you need an adapter or converter. Some appliances may only operate at different voltages, so you’ll need to find a converter for them, even if the plug type is the same.

Always keep in mind that you can find converters, adapters, or combination devices. Make sure you choose the one that will do what you need. Don’t assume you just need an adapter when you also need a 110 to 220v converter as well. Find something that satisfies all your requirements.

 

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