Most of the world is using 220 volts, but the in the United States household outlets are different—they run at 110/120 volts. That said, some residential properties do have dedicated 240v electrical outlets reserved for larger appliances, power tools, and electric equipment that have motors commonly rated 240v. This explains why 240v appliances are still widely used in the US. People do understand that some appliances like air-conditioners, washing machines, and microwave ovens require 240v to perform efficiently.
Nevertheless, not all people are aware of the proper and safe usage of 240v appliances. If you are one of them or you just happen to be interested in 240v appliances, this guide is for you.
1. Check the appliance’s voltage specification.
Just because the appliance came from a European country doesn’t automatically mean it is rated 240v. To confirm, you must check the markings and labels on the appliance itself, or the cord or plug. If it’s not there, then look at its instruction manual. Doing this will let you know if the appliance is multi-voltage or dual-voltage. If it is, then you may simply need to switch it to 120v then plug into the 120v wall outlet.
2. Find that 240v wall outlet.
If you live in a newer home, you probably have 240v sockets in your kitchen and laundry areas. Still, you have to verify first if the wall socket is indeed a 240v line. Use a multimeter to measure the current, voltage, and resistance of the sockets. Note that 240v sockets typically look different from regular sockets. They are larger, wider, and normally accept three-pronged plugs.
3. Use a step-up transformer.
In case your home does not have a 240v dedicated circuit, then buy a step-up transformer. Just make sure that to choose the right size or watt rating to accommodate all the 240v appliances you need to use simultaneously.