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Thread: US/Canada plug power strip?

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
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    59

    Default US/Canada plug power strip?

    Does anyone know of a place in Auckland that might have power strips, with North American outlet plugs, but has a NZ plug for the side that goes to the wall. I have lots of electronics that will work on 240v, but they all have North American plugs, and no one sells plug adapters for less than $20 [and they're all so clunky I can't put two next to each other on a power strip].

    I have power strips we brought with us from Canada, but they all have breakers on them that pop when you plug them into 240v. So a power strip with North American plugs on both sides would work if it can still handle 240v running through it.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Wellington
    Posts
    1,870

    Default

    NOT a good idea!! Yes, they will pop. Thankfully that's the least that's happening. They're working as designed there. If you absolutely must import different voltage goods, then you will need to use a step-up/step-down transformer. These will allow you to use your US/Canadian electrical goods in NZ, and transform it to the correct voltage.

    BIG caveat: using a step-up/step-down transformer will invalidate the vast majority of house insurance / house contents insurance policies.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
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    Default

    No, I don't need a stepdown transformer. These are devices that can already accept 120v or 240v, they have dual voltage power supplies, but they all have north american plugs.

    I want a power strip that will take the north american plug types, but still go into the NZ style wall outlet. I think it would be ridiculous to have to spend $20 for a plug adapter for every device [and those are all so big, you can't plug two of them next to each other on a power strip anyway].

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Sandwich Islands
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    746

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    I also searched for such an item, but as far as I can tell, it does not exist. You can find very cheap single plug adapters on ebay and amazon...I now have a huge collection. The cheapest were $11 US for 10 (shipped to NZ)--they do not have a ground, and also will not take a polarized plug; but they are good for things that use AC DC adapters. I found some much better 3 prong plugs on Amazon for around $3 (US) a piece.

    Edit: These will fit together across an NZ power strip: http://cgi.ebay.com/3-Universal-Trav...01707320641884
    Last edited by 72andsunny; 10th July 2010 at 08:50 AM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Chch, NZ
    Posts
    2,212

    Default

    To answer the original post, I believe you're best to not bother with such 240v N. American power bar. You won't find one unless it's a non-fused / non-circuit breaker type (which is unsafe).

    CUT off the N. American plugs and replace it with a NZ plug. Sure they are bigger but so is 240 volts. Buying adapters is a waste of $. These NZ plugs can be bought at The Warehouse for around $3.50 each.

    BIG caveat: using a step-up/step-down transformer will invalidate the vast majority of house insurance / house contents insurance policies.
    This is a 1st i've heard and I don't believe this is true. After all, the power from the street that connects to your house is supplied via a step down transformer. So a home step/up/down transformer provides isolation from the main 240 volts which means they can be viewed as being safer.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Manchester > Now Tauranga
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    4,393

    Default

    But US shape plugs are nominally rated at 120v. So the internals of any strip would be manufactured to run at 120v. Why as a mass manufacturer would you spec them any higher? I know your devices have dual voltage transformers, but the strips themselves won't be safe to use at 240v in NZ.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Oamaru, Otago
    Posts
    96

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    I live in China and they sell something here that I am surprised has not made a big impact elsewhere. It's a strip outlet where the plug is the Chinese standard plug (which coincidentally is the same as in NZ) but where the receptacles for the various items that you are plugging into it are designed to accept US two- and three-prong plugs, NZ-style plugs, EU-style two-pronged plugs and even UK-style plugs. This is very convenient in China where there is little consistency in the plugs, but I would imagine that they would be useful in other places too. I was debating bringing some with me from here but the quality of workmanship is so poor that I've had to replace many of them when I found them melting, or smoking, or otherwise not giving me a lot of confidence.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    51

    Default

    Edit: These will fit together across an NZ power strip: http://cgi.ebay.com/3-Universal-Trav...01707320641884


    I took a look at the picture and to be honest they do not meet the NZ/Australian plug standard, as neither pin has a 'sheath' as proscribed by the various standards (although I use 3760).

    Adapters also shown on EBAY often fail to meet NZ Standard and in some cases been subject to 'recall' by the authorities. You can probably find more info on this @ www.esv.vic.gov.au

    energysafe Victoria, declare them as unsafe due to the 'case splitting in half and in some cases overheating, which could lead to fire'............

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