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Electrical Wire and Cable

Replacing a 220 Volt Light Bulb with 120 Volt

I bought a wooden decorative lamp from Korea, the salesman told me that I’d need to change the 10 watt bulb because they use 220 V electricity, what bulb should I get…

Selecting a 120 Volt Light Bulb for a 220 Volt Fixture
Question: On a trip to Korea, I bought a wooden decorative lamp. The salesman gave me a little plug to fit over the Korean plug so that I can plug it in here, but he also told me that I’d need to change the bulb. It came with a little 10 w bulb. I believe they use 220 V electricity in Korea, and we use 110 V here in most outlets, right? Is this lamp safe to use? and what am I looking for in a bulb? Do I just need to find one that’s 20 w? or are there other issues?

This electrical question came from: Mark, a Homeowner from Ellsworth, Maine.
See more about Electrical Wiring for Maine

Additional Comments: Great site. I’m happy I came across it.

Dave’s Reply:
Thanks for your electrical question Mark.
Mark, purchase a bulb that has the same base and watt output. You could use the existing 220 volt bulb but it will be half as bright as if it were plugged into 200 volts.

The Following links will assist you with your electrical question:

220 Volt Wiring Diagram

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FAQs Frequently Asked Questions and Comments

4 Responses to “Replacing a 220 Volt Light Bulb with 120 Volt”
  1. Mellodie says:

    I just bought a 50’s era night light that was made in Japan.The light socket reads 660watts and 250volts.What light bulb do I use?

    • Dave Rongey says:

      Hi Mellodie, Great Question!
      The light socket states the maximum rating, so if the socket is the standard type which I assume it is, then a conventional incandescent or LED light bulb will work for you. Since this is a night light then a lower amount of light is typically used, therefore there will not be a problem of overheating the fixture.
      I hope this helps you,
      Enjoy your night light!

  2. Anne says:

    I bought a lamp in the US (120 volt) and brought it back to Denmark (220 volt).
    I am aware that I should change the light bulp but is it safe to use the wire made for 120 volt in 220 volt?

    • Dave Rongey says:

      Hi Anne,
      Yes, the wire size should be fine, in fact because the light fixture will be used for 220 volts the wire size is about twice the size that is necessary. The higher the voltage the smaller the wire size. No need to change the wire size, it will be fine.
      Enjoy your light fixture.

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