What’s the difference between European converter plugs and European rewireable plugs?

There are plenty of issues to be considered when temporarily (or permanently) relocating from the UK to mainland Europe, and there are just as many faced by anyone who has had a moderately lengthy stay in Europe and now wants to return to Britain. But let’s narrow it down to electrical matters.


If you’re bringing electrical goods purchased in Europe back home with you to the UK, you’ll need to ensure that the mains power plug on these items is compatible not only with UK voltage (significantly higher than the EU countries) but also with three-pin British power sockets, as European electrical devices come with two-pin plugs.


Alternatively, if you’re heading for a longish stay in Europe and you want to take power-hungry white goods such as washing machines, tumble dryers and dishwashers with you, they will all need to be rewired with European-compatible plugs (the same applies to your phone charger and your beloved music system).


In short, you’ll need two different solutions for each scenario – solutions that, happily, EuroNetwork can provide.


If you’re in the UK to Europe scenario, you’ll need to invest in some European-compatible two-pin plugs to replace your British three-pin plugs. The most widely used type of AC plug in Europe is the ‘Schuko’ plug. EuroNetwork’s European rewireable plugs fall into this category (Schuko, which comes from the German word Schutzkontakt, meaning ‘protective contact’, is considered an exceptionally electrically safe design when used with European Schuko mains power sockets).


Removing your UK plug from your electrical device and rewiring a Schuko plug on its cable for your European stay is easy and quick to do. European rewireable Schuko plugs are round in shape and feature two round pins, 4.8mm each in diameter, 19mm in length and 19mm apart. They also feature two flat contact points that look like indented notches at the top and bottom of the plug’s circumference.


Within them are the earth or ‘ground’ points, which depress two retractable earthing clips in the socket as they are inserted. This ensures that the earth connection is safely engaged before the live pin contacts the mains power supply. These plugs also gain additional security by means of two protruding notches on the horizontal sides of the circumference, which firmly slip into compatible notches in the socket.


For the other scenario, coming home to the UK from Europe with European-purchased electrical goods that you want to continue using, you’ll need one or more of EuroNetwork’s European to UK converter plugs.


European to UK converter plugs are needed for any electrical device with a higher amp rating than, for example, an electric toothbrush (1 amp). You can get by with a simple two-pin to three-pin adapter plug for low-amp devices like that, but any gadget requiring a higher current needs a converter plug to run safely.


If you’ve brought back a toaster, hair straightener or food blender that you purchased in Europe, you don’t have to mothball it. EuroNetwork’s converter plugs come in 3-amp and 5-amp ratings. They’re also easy to fit: simply open the lid on the EuroNetwork ECP (European Converter Plug) plastic casing, push your device’s European two-pin plug into the space beneath, click it into place, and then screw the lid shut.


EuroNetwork also offers two additional options: the ‘Quickfit’ CP1 converter plug dispenses with a screwable lid altogether – just slip the two-pin plug into the diamond-shaped opening in the casing and tighten the screw to keep it firmly in place. Or, if you’re in even more of a hurry, try the Fast Fit ‘FCP’ (Fast Converter Plug) option – forget about screws, just click the two-pin plug into place through the opening in the converter plug’s casing, and you’re ready to go.

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