Introduction: EU to US Conversion of a Phone Charger

Do you ever have that problem where you buy a global phone abroad and then move somewhere you can't charge it easily? If you don't want to buy a converter and use it to charge your advanced piece of electronics, or buy a whole new adapter for a phone that remembers when Aqua was popular, you can convert your EU phone charger into a US charger! This instructable covers how to convert an EU power adapter for a phone (or anything with this type of DC power adapter) into a US adapter.

Basically not more complicated than splicing wires, a greater reason for this is to make using AC to DC transformers we see all of the time less mystifying. The main limitation is that you need to have a US adapter with the same DC output, or you risk frying whatever you're about to electrify. DC power adapters can be used to charge or power anything that uses DC power, including IDY electronics like the Arduino, or basically anything else in your house that uses a DC power converter. As for this instructable? I made it at TechShop!

You'll need:
1 - Foreign power adapter with the right phone connector
1 - US power adapter with the same voltage as the foreign adapter
1 - Wire strippers
1 - Bit of electrical tape

Basically you're going to:
1. Check to make sure the specks work
2. Splice the phone connector to the US adapter
3. Charge your phone!

Step 1: Step 1: What You Need

You'll need:
1 - Foreign power adapter with the right phone connector
1 - US power adapter with the same voltage as the foreign adapter
1 - Wire strippers
1 - Bit of electrical tape

Foreign Power Adapter : First of all, you need to look at the foreign adapter that fits your phone correctly. Check the specs for where it says "OUTPUT: #.#V, ##0mA." In this example, we have "DC 5.3V 500mA," so we need a US adapter with 5.3V output.

US Power Adapter*You need to have a US power adapter that has the same voltage output. In this example, we have 5.3V, so the US adapter should also say "DC 5.3V" or we risk ruining whatever we're going to plug in. It is also the case that this example shows a NOKIA US power adapter. You can, however, use basically ANY AC to DC power adapter that has the specs you're looking for.

Wire strippers: For splicing wires. You could also use pliers, scissors, a knife, or if you're doing this at TechShop, you can find even more stuff.

Bit of Electrical tape: For a more permanent fix, you could solder, or use wire splicers that are shown in red (but way too big for my tiny wires).



*NOTE: My US adapter is only 5V and 350mA. Because I'm charging a battery, having a lower voltage may affect the charge capacity, and having a lower mA rating will charge it slower. I DO NOT RECOMMEND EVER USING A HIGHER VOLTAGE POWER ADAPTER (unless you have reason to believe it will work). Going above the voltage your original adapter used is much more likely to fry or ruin your device. Always try to get as close to the exact voltage as possible, and never go over.

Step 2: Step 2: Cut and Strip the Wires

EU: Cut the EU adapter wire, separating the phone connector from the wall plug. You're going to KEEP the phone connector, and the wall plug can go into a box or a suitcase until you go back to Europe.

EU: Strip the two wires on the phone connector end, as shown on the right side of the picture.

US: Cut US adapter wire, but this time you're saving the wall plug, and the device connector can be put in your junk drawer until you decide to throw it out.

US: Strip the two wires on the wall connector end, as shown on the left below.


NOTE: The wires might be in different arrangements or forms. As long as there are two, you're fine. One is positive, one is negative.


Step 3: Step 3: Splice the Wires

1*. Identify the POSITIVE and NEGATIVE wires on each end, and twist them together with as much surface contact between the two, and the strongest twist as possible. Hopefully the wires don't just fall apart, and hopefully the twist makes the contact abundant.

2. (shown in the second picture) Use electrical tape (shown. weak, ghetto), a wire splicer (stronger, jenky), or a soldering iron(robust, profesh) to secure the connection.



*To splice the wires, it's important to identify the positive and negative wires on each end, and make sure those get connected. If they are color coded, the color that isn't black is usually positive. Sometimes one of the wires will have a stripe or some indication on the plastic coating, this would indicate that it is a positive wire. Hopefully there is some way to tell. If not and it's on the wall outlet side, you can use a voltmeter. Otherwise, you might have to guess and check...

Step 4: Step 4: Finish

Make sure it works...and that's it!

(I show some extra tape to protect the wire splicing.)

As I mentioned before, this is a simple project that is basically just some wire splicing!

Comments

author
thematthatter made it! (author)2013-07-01

You dont need to replace the whole power supply!!!!
Look at the back of both those power supplies if it says input 100-240V then it will run on BOTH 110V and 220V.
all you need to do is get a cheap adapter to plug the prongs into. (one to go from round to flat or vise versa)
with the World being global now a lot of the power supplies are dual voltage, check your computer, and new tvs before you need to plug into a step down or step up converter.

author
artworker made it! (author)2013-07-01

I totally worship Nokia 3310! It is the only phone that has bantumi in it at some point of time. I had it for around 3 years!