How do I use my clothes iron in Saint Helena?

St Helenian power outlet

Summary

First check your clothes iron can handle the voltage in Saint Helena:

If not then either:

  • Use a dual voltage travel iron [2] - you may still need to use a power adapter for Saint Helena but these cheap lightweight accessories are designed specifically for travel.
  • Use a power converter [5] (or voltage transformer) - this will enable you to use your existing clothes iron and other applicances with a 240 volt St Helenian power outlet, however this is considerably bulkier, heavier and more expensive than a dedicated travel clothes iron. A power converter changes the voltage but not the physical shape of the plug on your clothes iron to fit in the power outlet used in Saint Helena, so check that your voltage transformer has a power adapter for Saint Helena otherwise you will also need to bring another power adapter. Also worth noting that your own personal clothes iron might not be suitable for travel and you risk potential damage in transit.

Warning: If your clothes iron won't handle 240 volts used in Saint Helena you run a risk of an electrical fire hazard, a blown fuse or damage to your clothes iron. Before using your clothes iron in Saint Helena check the instruction manual to ensure safe operation.

Using a clothes iron in Saint Helena

Can I use my US clothes iron in Saint Helena?

The instructions on this page assume that you are a reader from the US travelling to Saint Helena and will provide advice on using your American clothes iron with a St Helenian power outlet.

Will my clothes iron work in Saint Helena?

This depends on if your clothes iron can handle the 240 volt power outlets used in Saint Helena. If you're using either a dual voltage clothes iron or your clothes iron is designed to operate using 240 volts and you have the correct power adapter then you can use it in Saint Helena. If not then then you will need to consider purchasing either a dual voltage travel iron [2] or a heavier and more expensive power converter [5], read our guide on do you need a voltage converter to use your clothes iron for help deciding which solution is more suitable.

Saint Helena power outlets and plug sockets

What mains voltage is used in Saint Helena?

Power outlets in Saint Helena are 240 volts.

What is the electrical frequency used in Saint Helena?

The frequency of the alternating current in a St Helenian power outlet is 50 Hz.

Which plug adapter will you need for using a clothes iron in Saint Helena?

Type G power outlets are used in Saint Helena. The wall socket, also called a type G power outlet, looks like 3 vertical holes with shutters in a triangular configuration for live, neutral and earth. A Type G power adapter [4] will allow you to use a 240 volt clothes iron in Saint Helena - read the simple guide below for full details of how to use a travel adapter for Saint Helena. Please be aware that unless you that have a dual voltage clothes iron you might also need to bring a power converter.

Which plug adapter will you need for using a clothes iron in Saint Helena?

Dual voltage travel irons

Is my clothes iron dual voltage?

One method to tell if your clothes iron can accept a dual voltage power outlet is to look for either a sticker or numbers printed on the handle, base or the plug. The location might vary depending on the make and model of your clothes iron and should also state in the instruction manual. Some dual voltage clothes irons might change automatically but other models will feature a button which allows you to toggle between different voltage ranges depending on which country you are in.

  • A specific number such as 110V indicates a single voltage clothes iron. If this number matches the 240 volts used in Saint Helena then you should be able to use your clothes iron with a St Helenian power outlet.
  • A small voltage range with a dash such as 100-120V also indicates a single voltage clothes iron which can accomodate small voltage fluctuations. If the 240 volts used in a St Helenian power outlet falls within the range shown on your clothes iron then you can use it in Saint Helena.
  • A larger voltage range separated with a slash such as 100/240V indicates a dual voltage clothes iron capable of being used in Saint Helena or any other country.

Travelling to Saint Helena with a clothes iron

Can you take a clothes iron in your carry on?

According to the TSA guidelines for clothes irons [8] there are no restrictions when bringing a mains powered clothes iron in your carry on luggage through airport security in the US. The TSA also suggests that you should verify that your airline that is flying you to Saint Helena will allow clothes irons onboard and that it will fit in the overhead bin or underneath the seat of the aircraft. The TSA also advices wrapping wires tightly around electric items such as clothes irons.

If you intend to pack a fragile or expensive clothes iron in your hand held luggage then it is advisable to bring hard carry on luggage [9] as this provides the most protection against knocks and drops during your journey.

Power converters for Saint Helena

What is the difference between a voltage converter and a power adapter?

Voltage converter

What is the difference between a voltage converter and a power adapter?

A cheap, small and lightweight power adapter (or plug adapter) changes the shape of the plug on your clothes iron to fit into a power outlet in Saint Helena, but a heavy and bulkier power converter [5] will convert the voltage of 240 volts from a St Helenian power outlet to work with a non-240 volt clothes iron.

Can I use a power converter to use a normal clothes iron in Saint Helena?

A voltage transformer [5] (or power converter) allows a clothes iron using a different voltage to operate with the 240 volt power outlet used in Saint Helena. Travellers wishing to bring their own clothes iron can use a power converter, but it can be considerably less expensive to purchase a dedicated dual voltage travel iron [2] than it is to purchase a power converter. A power converter is also significantly bulkier and heavier than a travel clothes iron making a power converter less suited for travelling compared to a travel clothes iron.

How to use a clothes iron in Saint Helena using a type G power adapter

How to power your clothes iron in Saint Helena with a Type G travel charger.

  1. Ensure that the iron is either a dual voltage travel iron [2] or can work with a 240 volt power supply but if it doesn't then don't attempt these instructions as you may create an electrical fire hazard, damage your iron or blow a fuse. Before using a dual voltage travel iron make sure the switch is set to the 240 volt setting to use in Saint Helena - consult the owners manual for more details on how to do this.
  2. If the plug on your clothes iron isn't the same type of outlet used in Saint Helena you'll need to buy a Type G plug adapter [4]. This plug adapter is designed to convert different plugs on appliances from other countries for an electrical outlet used in Saint Helena by changing the shape of the plug, however it doesn't change the voltage of the clothes iron to work with a 240 volt supply.
  3. Start by taking the Type G plug adapter and plugging it in the St Helenian power outlet. You can recognise this plug supply by the three rectangular holes forming a triangle pattern for live, neutral and ground pins.
  4. After that plug in your clothes iron into the Type G plug adapter.
  5. Turn on the St Helenian power outlet. You can now switch on the iron to use in Saint Helena.
How to use a clothes iron in Saint Helena using a type G power adapter

See also

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Helena,_Ascension_and_Tristan_da_Cunha - Saint Helena Wikipedia page
  2. https://www.amazon.com/Small-Mini-Iron-Non-Stick-Extra-Long/dp/B01AK9ZUGO/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&qid=1483620272&sr=8-4&keywords=dual+voltage+travel+iron&refinements=p_72:2661618011&linkCode=ll1&tag=wikiconnections-20&linkId=2f036aaac07e425cbd203ec0166146cb - dual voltage travel iron
  3. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/typeG.htm - Type G power outlet
  4. Type G plug adapter - Allows appliances to connect to Type G power outlets without converting voltage
  5. Power converter - A step up step down power converter converts 110-120 volts up to 220-240 volts and 220-240 volts down to 110-120 Volts
  6. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mains_electricity_by_country - WikiPedia - Mains electricity by country
  7. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/list_bylocation.htm - IEC World Plugs by location
  8. https://apps.tsa.dhs.gov/mytsa/cib_results.aspx?search=clothes%20iron - TSA guidelines for clothes irons
  9. Hard carry on luggage - Example of hard cases, suitcases and luggage suitable for airline carry on.