US small appliances in UK

Old Oct 21st 2020, 1:09 am
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Default US small appliances in UK

Hi,

I am returning to the UK from US and would love to keep my two specialist sewing machines which cost over $1000. Will I be able to use them in the UK with an adaptor? Or get them converted to UK voltage?

many thanks in advance!
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Old Oct 21st 2020, 10:52 am
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Default Re: US small appliances in UK

First thing to do is look at the power supply of your sewing machine, it may say 110 -220v. If it says 110v then you will need a 220->110v convertor, not just an adapter. They are easily found. Your power supply may also say 60Hz, and the UK is 50Hz but that is okay, no need to change frequency.

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Old Oct 21st 2020, 5:30 pm
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Default Re: US small appliances in UK

Originally Posted by durham_lad View Post
First thing to do is look at the power supply of your sewing machine, it may say 110 -220v. If it says 110v then you will need a 220->110v convertor, not just an adapter. .....
"Transformer", not convertor.

Convertors are at best suitable for temporary and/or low power usage, such as if you're on holiday somewhere. A transformer is a more robust piece of equipment.

When shopping for a transformer, be sure to buy one rated for the power of the appliance you intend to use it for. Look on the specification plate, usually located near where the cable is attached, which will have information on the voltage, mains freqency, and wattage (power) .... I recommend that you buy a transformer rated for twice the power draw of the appliance you plan to use it for: e.g for a sewing maching rated at, say, 300W you would need a transformer rated at at least 600w.

It is possible that an appliance bought in the US has power given in Amps, not Watts, and if so, multiply the amperage by 120volts to get the power in watts.

If by any chance (though I consider it unlikely), that the sewing machine is rated for 110v-240v, I would recommend that you replace the plug or power cord, rather than relying on an adapter.
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Old Oct 25th 2020, 4:11 pm
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Default Re: US small appliances in UK

Check out 'screwfix.co.uk' for the transformers.
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Old Oct 25th 2020, 5:40 pm
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Default Re: US small appliances in UK

Thank you all so much for the replies, I am so pleased I can keep my machines! My brother is a tradesman so he can probably help with the screw fix order.
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Old Nov 10th 2020, 12:32 pm
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Default Re: US small appliances in UK

Getting a voltage transformer is fairly simple, but some equipment needs the right frequency (Hz). I found a converter that will go from 240v/50Hz to 110v/60Hz on Amazon for $40, but it only handles 250 watts. It seems that getting a transformer than handles frequency for more then 250w is quite expensive.
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Old Nov 10th 2020, 2:27 pm
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Default Re: US small appliances in UK

Originally Posted by thesavages View Post
Getting a voltage transformer is fairly simple, but some equipment needs the right frequency (Hz). I found a converter that will go from 240v/50Hz to 110v/60Hz on Amazon for $40, but it only handles 250 watts. It seems that getting a transformer than handles frequency for more then 250w is quite expensive.
Well worth checking but I doubt there will be many small appliances that are truly frequency dependant. Even small devices with motors such as food mixers will work fine on 50 or 60hz. However, it is good to know that there are very affordable converters available that also change the frequency.
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Old Nov 10th 2020, 3:02 pm
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Default Re: US small appliances in UK

As durham lad said most appliances will work, it's appliances like record turntables, analog clocks and any circuit timing devices that could be affected.
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Old Nov 10th 2020, 3:13 pm
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Default Re: US small appliances in UK

If the device says "50-60Hz" or otherwise mentions both frequencies, then a voltage only transformer is fine. If it just says 60Hz then it may have problems, especially if there's a motor involved (like a sowing machine.)

As a general rule, devices that have turning or vibrating motors may have frequency sensitivity. These types of appliances when used at the wrong frequency will pitch, make noise, buzz, run at the wrong speed, or have timekeeping problems. In some cases, devices with motors may malfunction as well as overheat if operated from the wrong frequency.
From hXXps://www.kccscientific.com/traveling-or-relocating-overseas/ (replace the XX with TT to make it a link, or google "KCC Traveling or Relocating Overseas" (I can't post URLs as I'm a new user)
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Old Nov 10th 2020, 4:14 pm
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Yes, correct and I'll shall check out that link. Thanks
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Old Nov 10th 2020, 4:26 pm
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Default Re: US small appliances in UK

Bloody hell, they're expensive.
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Old Nov 10th 2020, 5:20 pm
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Default Re: US small appliances in UK

Originally Posted by thesavages View Post
Getting a voltage transformer is fairly simple, but some equipment needs the right frequency (Hz). I found a converter that will go from 240v/50Hz to 110v/60Hz on Amazon for $40, but it only handles 250 watts. It seems that getting a transformer than handles frequency for more then 250w is quite expensive.
Honestly, if you have something which is frequency dependent and needs more than 150w (that is not a typo - don't push any sort of converter/ transformer to it'sd limit), then on cost basis alone you might as well get rid of the appliance before you move, and buy a new one when you arrive in your new home.
Originally Posted by Budgie1066 View Post
As durham lad said most appliances will work, it's appliances like record turntables, analog clocks and any circuit timing devices that could be affected.
Digital clocks are a "timing device" that depend on mains frequency - which is why the clock on a cooker or microwave is not very accurate as the mains frequency varies enough to cause the time to drift.
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Old Nov 10th 2020, 6:46 pm
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Default Re: US small appliances in UK

What are you talking about? Where does it say I'm looking to move. Check the original thread about specialist sowing machines. It's all about whether there's some way they can be used in the UK.
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Old Nov 10th 2020, 10:22 pm
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Default Re: US small appliances in UK

Originally Posted by Budgie1066 View Post
What are you talking about? Where does it say I'm looking to move. ....
What does, quoted from post #1, "I am returning to the UK from US ..." mean if it doesn't mean you're moving from the US to the UK?
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Old Nov 11th 2020, 12:32 am
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Default Re: US small appliances in UK

Hey confused, have we crossed wires somewhere? because now I'm confused. I was replying to the original thread, about where they could check out possible transformers for their machines. post #4. Then if you follow my other posts it's more or less about the possible effects between 60Hz/50Hz. So, no not moving back.
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