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Leads Direct sells a wide range of Mains leads and cables, ready made for purchase online. In addition, Leads Direct can supply roll cabling for the UK, Europe, the US, and even Japan and Australia. Also of course, our unique Custom Lead service enables you to have cables made to any specification you can provide – as long as they will be safe and meet the relevant standards for the country of intended use.
Each of these countries shares a standard set of appliance connectors – the IEC 320 Standard Appliance Connectors – as opposed to the wide variety of plugs/connectors for mains supply.
For information about international mains power supply voltages and frequencies please visit our Mains Voltages page.
International Mains Connectors
Type G plugs are the standard UK 3-pin mains plugs. The single pin without the sleeve is the earth connection. We have UK Plugs available off the shelf – from rewireable units to fully moulded UK Power Cords.
This connector is widely used, and in addition to the UK it can be used in many countries across the world, including Baharain, Bangladesh, Belize (British Honduras), Bhutan, Botswana, Brunei, Burma, Cyprus, Dominica, Dubai, Egypt, Eire (Republic of Ireland), Falkland Islands, Gambia, Ghana, Gibralta, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Iraq, Jordan, Kenya, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Macau, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Malta, Mauritius, Myanbar, Nigeria, Oman, Qatar, St Helena, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Siant Vincent and the Grenadines, Saudi Arabia, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, UAE, Uganda, Vietnam, Yemen, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Note: this connector is not always the main or official connector for the country in question – and may be available in tandem with other connectors. For a full country-by-country review of the connectors and power supplies across the world, see our International Voltages page.
Type E and Type F CEE7/7 Schuko plugs. Notice the plate with a hole in between and above the two pins; this connects to French and Belgian sockets (which have an earth pin that sticks out). Running in a slot coming from that plate is a continuation strip from the plate.
Other European countries use a socket with a scrolled metal connector emerging from the side, which mates with that strip. This ensures that the Schuko can be used in most mainland European countries, making the Schuko the most widely used mains plug (and therefore Mains Cable) in europe.
Rewireable versions of this Schuko Plug are available. They have the same pin arrangement, but look different in the body of the plug. We also have a wide range of moulded European Mains Leads available off the shelf.
A Type C 2-pin Euro plug. Note that this connector has no earth connection, and must not be used on any appliance that needs to be earthed. This Type C mains plug is commonly known as a “Shaver Plug” and is found in many countries worldwide – mainly in Europe (though strangely, European 2-pin “Shaver Plugs” can also be found in UK bathrooms). It is also commonly used with low-power devices – devices with higher power consumption meanwhile typically using the full Schuko plug.
A Type I Australian/NZ 3 pin plug, used in Australia, New Zealand, and Papua New Guinea. Note that whilst being similar in many ways to UK plugs (three pins: two sleeved, one unsleeved) and US plugs (thin, flat pins), the two power pins are set at an angle of around 45 degrees. There is an unearthed version of this plug as well, with only two flat V-aligned pins. These flat blades measure 6.5 by 1.6mm and are set 30° to the vertical on a nominal pitch of 13.7 mm.
Wall sockets almost always have switches on them for extra safety, as in the UK. A variant plug with a slightly longer, wider and thicker earth pin is used for devices drawing up to 15 ampères; sockets supporting this pin will also accept 10 A plugs.
Although the above plug looks very similar to the ones used in China and Argentina, the plugs are not compatible. The Chinese plug will fit, but there is a 1mm difference in pin length. The Argentian connector is identical to the Australian, but the polarity is reversed.
Australia’s standard plug/socket system is described in SAA document AS 3112, and is used in applications up to 10 A. As of 2003, the latest major update is AS/NZS 3112:2000, which mandated insulated pins by 2005.
A Type B rewireable US 3-pin NEMA 5 15 plug. Notice the rounded earth connector, which is not always available on US sockets. Many older US sockets accept only the 2- pin plug, and cannot be used with any appliance that needs to be earthed. In the USA these plugs are detailed in NEMA (National Electrical Manufacturers Association) publication WDI, and are incorporated into UL 498 B4 UL. Canadian plug and socket standards are outlined by CSA. The NEMA 1-15P and 5-15P style plugs are also used in Mexico, Japan and parts of Korea and Taiwan. At a glance, Japanese plugs (100VAC, 50 & 60Hz) look the same as US plugs, however, the Japanese system (JIS 8303) requires approvals by either MITI or JIS. NEMA US/Canada use a range of plugs – including NEMA5-20, NEMA6-15, NEMA6-20 and many others – most of which we stock. For a full list, please see the NEMA Connectors page in our technical library.
This rewireable USA NEMA5-15 connector is available here: we also offer a heavy-duty version (HDNEMA5-15P), a range of NEMA5-15RX sockets, and – again – a heavy-duty version (HDNEMA5-15RX). For more information and a wiring diagram, please see the article on our Wiring an American Plug page. If you’re looking for an earthed US plug, please check out our US (Type A and Type B) Mains Leads. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, please give us a call or email.
A Type A rewireable NEMA 1-15 US 2 pin plug. For more information and a wiring diagram please see the article on our Wiring an American Plug page. If you’re looking for an earthed US plug please check out our US (Type A and Type B) Mains Leads, if you can’t find what you’re looking for please give us a call or email.
Note that this connector has not got an earth connection and cannot be used with any appliance that needs to be earthed, but will fit into the US earthed socket. Moulded versions are sometimes available. If you’re looking for an un-earthed US plug please check out our US (Type A and Type B) Mains Leads, if you can’t find what you’re looking for please give us a call or email.
A Type M South African 3 pin plug. The single pin without the sleeves is the earth connection, but note that the sleeves shown on two pins in this image are not part of the South African approvals, and may be bare on product received.
This plug is the same as the old UK 15 amp round pin plug, and is also used for Theatre lighting in the UK as well as in other countries including India.
A Type H Israeli three pin Plug. This plug, defined in SI 32, is unique to Israel and is incompatible with all other sockets. It has rounded pins that form a V-shape rather than being parallel, and older versions have flat pins. Rated at 16 A, it also has an earthing pin.
Visitors to Israel may find that in practice, sockets are manufactured with widenings in the middle of the V-shape-oriented slots for the positive and negative prongs. This allows the Israeli socket to accommodate European 2 pin plugs.
This plug type can also be found in Jordan.
A Type L Italian 3 pin plug. The 10 ampere style is like the European 2 pin except that it is earthed by means of a central earthing pin. The single pin without the sleeves is the earth connection. We have Italian plugs and sockets available, our standard 2 metre moulded Italian plug to IEC C13 is our part 2IT-C13. This product is also available as a rewireable part, ITRPB for the black or ITRPW for the white Italian plug. However if you’re in need of a moulded Italian Type L power lead then why not take a look here.
This plug is relatively standardised in Libya, Ethiopia, and Chile and is found randomly throughout North Africa, and occasionally in old buildings in Spain.
A Type I Chinese Mains Plug. Our rewireable Chinese mains plug is our part CHRPB. Although there are slight differences (the pins are 1 mm longer) the Australian plug mates with the socket used in the People’s Republic of China (mainland China). The standard for Chinese plugs and sockets was set out in GB 2099.1–1996 and GB 1002–1996.
As part of China’s commitment for entry into the WTO, the new CPCS (Compulsory Product Certification System) has been introduced, and compliant Chinese plugs have been awarded the CCC (China Compulsory Certification) Mark by this system. The plug is three wire, grounded, rated at 10 A, 250 V and used for Class 1 applications. Our best selling Chinese power cord is our 2.5CH-C13 but for a small range of moulded Type I Chinese power leads please take a look here.
Switzerland has its own standard which is described in SEV 1011 for their mains leads, known as Type J. This plug is similar to the two pin European plug, except that it has the addition of an earth pin off to one side. Swiss sockets can take europlugs (CEE 7/16). This connector system is rated for use in applications up to 10 amperes.Above 10 A, equipment must be either wired permanently to the electrical supply system with appropriate branch circuit protection or connected to the mains with an appropriate high power industrial connector.
This type of socket can also be sporadically encountered in buildings in Spain, where they may be erroneously referred to as enchufes americanos — American sockets. Switzerland also has a two-pin plug, with the same pin shape, size and spacing as the SEV 1011’s live and neutral pins, but the hexagonal form factor is more flattened. It fits into both Swiss sockets (round and hexagonal) and CEE 7/16 sockets and is rated for up to 10 A.
We supply a small range of Swiss rewireable connectors and mains leads, our plugs are SWRPB for the black version and the SWRPW for the white but for moulded Swiss mains power leads these can be found here.
Here we have an example of the Type K Danish plug. The Danish standard is described in Afsnit 107-2-D1. The plug is similar to a Schuko plug except that it has a earthing pin instead of earthing clips.
The Danish socket will also accept many European plugs; however, there is no earthing connection with these plugs because a male earth pin is required on the plug. The correct plug must be used in Denmark for safety reasons.
A variation of this plug intended for use only on surge protected computer circuits has been introduced. The current rating on both plugs is 10 A.
For a small range of Danish mains leads you can find them here.
You should be aware that when you are replacing an existing plug (perhaps because it has been damaged) the colours of the wires in a mains lead may not correspond with the coloured markings identifying the terminals in the plug. Assuming that you have a modern cable with harmonised colours (Brown, Blue and Green and Yellow cores) you should proceed as follows:
Electricity can KILL!! If you are in any doubt at all about what you are doing, or your ability to do the work, you should refer any mains connection work to a qualified electrician.
The following are the colours that are used as standard on mains plugs:
USA / Japan
Green / Yellow
Green / Yellow
Leads Direct makes great efforts to provide accurate and complete information. However, portions of the information contained in this website and any documents viewed on it or downloaded from it may be incorrect or not current. Any errors or omissions should be reported for investigation and correction. The information provided in any documents whether on our website or otherwise is provided "as is." No warranty of any kind, implied, expressed, or statutory, including but not limited to the warranties of non-infringement of third party rights, title, merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, and freedom from computer virus, is given.
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