> >
>

# How to determine the wattage for lamp - electrical transformer

#1
08-03-12, 01:37 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Virginia
Posts: 37
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
How to determine the wattage for lamp - electrical transformer

Hello,

I feel like I am asking a stupid question here but I'rather be safe than sorry. We are moving to Europe and will bring a few lamps with us. Since everything is in 220v over there, I need to buy a few transformer. Based on what I can read, you need to buy transformer that support the wattage of the appliance you will use it for (you apply some rati depending on the appliance).

So here is the stupid question, for lamps, how do you determine the max wattage? Is this equal to the wattage of the bulb you put in?

Thanks.

#2
08-03-12, 01:47 PM
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: WI/MN
Posts: 20,107
Received 1,033 Votes on 992 Posts
AFAIK, it would be based on the wattage of the largest incandescent bulb you could put in it.

#3
08-03-12, 02:00 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Virginia
Posts: 37
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Electrical converter 220v to 110v - What to choose?

Hello,

I am moving to Europe for a while and need to buy some converters for lamps, power tools, etc...I can't tell if there are some reputable companies that sell such things (when you google, you find a bit of everything) and I don't want to get something that will catch fire or something.

It seems that products from the company seven star come up quite often but I had never heard about them. Do you know what to look for when buying such things and who makes good products?

Thanks.

#4
08-03-12, 02:17 PM
Member
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 8,469
Received 5 Votes on 4 Posts
So here is the stupid question, for lamps, how do you determine the max wattage? Is this equal to the wattage of the bulb you put in?
There are no stupid questions! It is the maximum allowable wattage. For most table lamps with open-top shades, that's 100W or 150W. We have one floor lamp that is rated for somewhere between 480W and 700W. Lamps with closed shades or cone-shaped shades only open at one end will typically be limited to 60W or 75W.

But why do you ask? Are you planning to take your lamps to Europe, rather than cash? And plug the lamps into the local power? If you are, and you're planning to use plug-in converters to give you 120V for the lamp, than the answer there is the same as the answer here.

#5
08-03-12, 02:17 PM
Group Moderator
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: United States
Posts: 14,842
Received 551 Votes on 473 Posts
Google "Travel Voltage Converter" Biggest thing to look for is that it has enough watts to handle what you want to run. This one: Foreign Travel Voltage Converter Adapter Kit SS204K- Seven Star-Computers & Electronics-Power & Cables-Adapters Can handle 1600 watts while this one: Amazon.com: HDE (TM) Travel Voltage Power Converter Adapter 220v/110v 110v/220v: Electronics can only handle 80 watts. I do not have any experience with these so I can only recommend buying from a reputable store.

#6
08-03-12, 02:33 PM
Super Moderator
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Manitoba
Posts: 10,229
Received 60 Votes on 56 Posts
I merged two threads that were asking the same thing.

You need to consider that many European countries have 50 cycle power.
Even though you can lower the voltage the frequency will not change and some electronics don't work well on 50 cycle.

#7
08-03-12, 02:41 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Virginia
Posts: 37
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Thanks for the feedback. I am just planning to take a few lamps that were not cheap as well as some power tools (I just need to power the battery charger as these are cordless tools).

For the lamps, I will see if I can get someone to rewire them while over there but in the meantime, I'll use a down converter.

#8
08-03-12, 02:45 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Virginia
Posts: 37
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Sorry for the somewhat similar questions. I was trying to separate the questions to the right forum as one for for lamps wattage and the other more general.

In term of frequency, for lamps and a battery charger (We are not bringing any electronics), do you see any issue?

#9
08-03-12, 02:48 PM
Member
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 8,469
Received 5 Votes on 4 Posts
Have you asked your neighbors? There must be some few folks you know who have lived overseas.

#10
08-03-12, 02:52 PM
Super Moderator
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Manitoba
Posts: 10,229
Received 60 Votes on 56 Posts
If the lamps are just incandescent with a simple switch they would be ok, a fluorescent or dimmer controlled lamp may not be.
Most battery chargers have charge controllers in them which are electronic so you would have to check with the mfr to see if they would work.

What country are you going to?

#11
08-03-12, 03:04 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Virginia
Posts: 37
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
I will be in France at first.

#12
08-03-12, 03:19 PM
Member
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 8,469
Received 5 Votes on 4 Posts
I will be in France at first.
France supplies 230V at 50 Hz. Everything you have that is working well is using 120V at 60Hz, so that's the conversion you need.

You won't be able to convert the cycles, so look for 230V to 120V conversion and make sure whatever you're taking can deal with 50Hz. As Greg noted earlier,
the frequency will not change and some electronics don't work well on 50 cycle.

#13
08-03-12, 03:19 PM
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,575
Received 15 Votes on 13 Posts
Assuming lamps using standard incandescent bulbs just make an adapter plug and use a 240v bulb.Bulb example: 60A/220 (220-240V) - 60 Watt, 220-240 Volt A19 Frosted Bulb | Bulbs.com.

#14
08-03-12, 03:33 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Virginia
Posts: 37
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Don't I have to be worried about the lamp wires? If not, I guess I just use a plug adapter. This would be easier and cheaper...

In addition, thinking about it, it is quite likely that I will only find CFL screw-in light bulbs in Europe that are meant for 220V (I believe it is not illegal in France to sell standard incandescent bulbs). So using a down converter might force me to import the light bulbs....Jeez.

#15
08-03-12, 04:58 PM
Member
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: United States
Posts: 11,102
Received 152 Votes on 135 Posts
I am not really sure about this, but I believe it's possible the switches in lamps purchased in the states may only be rated for 120 volts. I never really had to worry about it, lamps don't fit very well in an overstuffed duffel bag! Does anyone know for sure?

#16
08-04-12, 06:19 AM
Super Moderator
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Manitoba
Posts: 10,229
Received 60 Votes on 56 Posts
There are different viewpoints on this but I believe you really should adhere to the voltage rating on the wire and switches.

The approval for the device is based on the electrical specs for the country it is approved in.

#17
08-04-12, 07:38 AM
Member
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 8,469
Received 5 Votes on 4 Posts
Don't I have to be worried about the lamp wires?
No. The same gauge wire will supply more watts at higher voltage. Wires are rated for the maximum amperage they can safely handle.

#18
08-04-12, 08:42 AM
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,575
Received 15 Votes on 13 Posts
Or why not have the lamps rewired for the country your in if they are that important to you.

#19
08-04-12, 08:58 AM
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 21,112
Received 4 Votes on 4 Posts
Well....not really an answer to the question....but why not just buy what you need locally then sell them when you are done? Since the tools are cordless...you'd just need a charger. I'd guess most major brands sell in Europe as well as the US.

Sure...you'll lose some money....but you'll lose money if you buy a bunch of converters and then have no need for them when you come back.

#20
08-08-12, 02:05 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Virginia
Posts: 37
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
"Don't I have to be worried about the lamp wires?
No. The same gauge wire will supply more watts at higher voltage. Wires are rated for the maximum amperage they can safely handle.
"

Just to make sure I get it, are you saying that I can just used a plug adapter and light bulbs rated for 220V and I will be fine.

#21
08-08-12, 02:08 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Virginia
Posts: 37
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
For the cordless tools, this is what I will end up doing (seems less of an headache).

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: