Could it be Malaysian? They use the UK style plug and somewhere in the
range 220-240VAC but probably (IMX, in fact, based on downright shoddy
electrics in a 4 star hotel) have less stringent safety requirements.
It is an offence under the Plugs and Sockets etc. (Safety)
"No person shall supply, offer for supply, agree to supply,
expose for supply or possess for supply an electrical device
unless [...] A standard plug shall contain or be accompanied
by a fuse link which conforms to BS 1362.
You should immediately inform Trading Standards, who will
confiscate all the vendor's stock and prosecute. This is
treated as a very serious offence. They may initiate a
product recall too.
Assume not. If it's a loose mains lead, pick up a new one.
You need both, really. The voltage determines the thickness of the
insulation, at leats in theory. In practice, though, the insulation needs to
be thick enough to withstand being pulled around, and that's probably the
limiting factor, rather than the voltage.
Supplied by who - a trader, ebay merchant, employer ?
I bought one from ebay a while ago like this, and the power supply
probably won't last long enough to matter - make yourself an external
PSU using a cheap PC power supply :-}
You can have notched and un-notched kettle plugs - the notch denotes its
for "hot" use IIRC
Not even legal in Hong Kong. They have been a problem in Hong Kong
with people bringing back cheap non-conformant products from Mainland
China, but the Hong Kong authorities have been cracking down on these
There really must be a fuse of some sort somewhere, if not than as Andrew .
It is possible there is one but is non replaceable. Similar concept to wall
warts which have a thermal fuse built into the transformer.
This is a bit confusing Sue. what do you mean by a 'power brick' ?
Do you mean a wall-wart- transformer ?
I guess not as you also talk about a mains lead, so it's confusing.
Can you give a link to the product ?
It takes in a mains supply (often a very wide range of them, say 90 -
250v) and gives out isolated very low voltages (in the case of an
external hard drive unit, 12 and 5 volts dc).
As with the Vaio unit depicted, its mains input is typically by a socket
on the unit and the unit is supplied with a standard mains lead for the
Similar to a wall-wart, although invariably a switch mode power supply
with electronics and a high frequncy transformer - rather than the
It isn't the brick that is the problem - it is the mains lead supplied.
The latter does not meet UK regulations for mains leads.
You managed to phrase your question in a rather annoying fashion. You
rudely ask, "What do you mean by a 'power brick'?" Do you mean a
wall-wart? as if 'wall-wart' is some kind of proper English (which it
is not) and 'power brick' were some kind of weird bumpkin usage from
god-knows-where. I guess you are American. From my (UK) point of view,
"wall-wart" is American slang for the type of low voltage power supply
which has prongs to fit into an AC outlet. It often has a lead
terminating in one of the standard DC connectors for attachment to a
piece of low voltage equipment.
I have plenty of those, for a camera, a portable CD player, a cable
modem, a printer etc.
I also have a power brick. I believe they are used a lot with laptops.
It is a fanless DC power supply which supplies my Shuttle
small-form-factor PC. It has a 12v DC lead which plugs into the back of
the PC. It also has a male socket on it which I believe is called a CEE
inlet. It mates with a CEE connector on the mains lead, which has a
moulded plug (with a fuse) on the other end. OK? I expect Sue was
talking about one of these.
Take it straight to Trading Standards, it is totally illegal for use in the
UK or Ireland.
All 13A plugs in the UK should meet the requirements of BS 1363-1 and be
fitted with a fuse meeting the requirements of BS 1362.
Is there a 'kitemark' or 'CE' etc on the plug. If so it is most
Look at the plug plastic very hard, there may be a cover pressed
tightly in place containing a fuse. In such a case a 10A fuse would be
quite OK since a device with a built in 'IEC' ('kettle') plug would
have appropriate protection if it complies with usual standards (look
for kitemark, 'CE' etc.
It you are still in doubt it is probably easier to buy or obtain
another 'IEC' lead, there must be lots of them floating around from
defunct computers and appliances - for a computer application,
'notched' or 'un-notched' IEC sockets on these leads are quite OK.
Assuming that Hong Kong does allow un-fused 13A plugs on these leads,
this might be based on their own engineering studies which may very
well show that the 30 amp cartridge fuse or MCB protecting a ring main
would also quite adequately protect a 10A 'IEC' lead against short
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