Using a clothes iron in Chile

Chilean power outlet

Summary

Check your clothes iron can handle the voltage in Chile:

If not then:

  • Use a dual voltage travel iron [2] - you might still need to use an appropriate power adapter for Chile however these cheap lightweight accessories are designed specifically for travel.
  • Use a power converter [7] (or voltage transformer) - you can then use your existing clothes iron and other applicances with a 220 volt Chilean power outlet, however this is considerably heavier and more expensive than a dedicated travel clothes iron. A power converter will change the voltage but won't change the shape of the plug on your clothes iron to fit in the types of wall outlet used in Chile, so check that the voltage transformer comes with a suitable power adapter for Chile otherwise you will also need to purchase another power adapter. Be aware that your own existing clothes iron might not be suited for travel and you risk potential damage in your suitcase.

Warning: If your clothes iron won't handle 220 volts you run a risk of a blown fuse, damage to your clothes iron or even an electrical fire hazard. Prior to using your clothes iron in Chile check the instruction manual first to ensure safe operation.

Using a clothes iron in Chile

Will my clothes iron work in Chile?

That will depend on if your clothes iron can operate using the 220 volts which are used in Chile. If you're using either a dual voltage clothes iron or your clothes iron is designed to operate using 220 volts and you have the correct plug adapter then you should be able to use it in Chile. If not then then you will need to consider bringing either a power converter [7] or a dual voltage travel iron [2], read the guide on can you use a power converter to use your domestic clothes iron in Chile for help deciding which solution is more suitable.

Can I use my American clothes iron in Chile?

The guides on this page assume that you're an America reader visiting Chile and will provide guidance for using your US clothes iron with a Chilean power outlet.

Chile power outlets and plug sockets

What is the frequency used in a Chilean power outlet?

The frequency from a Chilean power outlet is 50 Hz.

What voltage is used in Chile?

Power outlets in Chile are 220 volts.

Which plug adapter do you need to bring when using a clothes iron in Chile?

Type C and L power outlets

Which plug adapter do you need to bring when using a clothes iron in Chile?

There are two types of power outlets used in Chile, types L and C with the primary power outlets being type L:

  • Plug Type C - You can recognise the power outlet by two circular holes adjacent to each other for live and neutral.
  • Plug Type L - The squashed hexagon shaped wall socket (also called a type L power outlet) can be identified by the 3 circular adjecent holes forming a line. There are two types of Type L plug socket, one rated for 10 amps and one for 16 amps. The 10 amp power outlet has 4mm round pins that are spaced 5.5mm apart and a 16 amp version has slightly larger 5mm thick round pins spaced 8mm apart.

A recommended travel adapter to bring for using a 220 volt clothes iron in Chile is a Type L power adapter [6]; read the step-by-step instructions below for full details of using a clothes iron in Chile using a plug adapter. Please note that unless you that have a dual voltage clothes iron you will need to check if you also have to bring a voltage converter.

Dual voltage travel irons

Is my clothes iron dual voltage?

An easy way how to tell if your clothes iron supports a dual voltage power outlet is to look for either a sticker or numbers printed on the plug, handle or the base of the clothes iron. This location might depend on the make or model of your clothes iron and could also be written in the instruction manual or on the box. Some dual voltage models might change automatically, however other irons will feature a button or switch which allows you to operate between different voltage ranges depending on which country you are visiting.

  • A specific number such as 110V indicates a single voltage clothes iron. If this number matches the 220 volts used in Chile then you should be able to use your clothes iron with a Chilean 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 220 volts used in a Chilean power outlet falls within the range shown on your clothes iron then you can use it in Chile.
  • A larger range separated with a slash such as 100/240V indicates a dual voltage clothes iron capable of being used in Chile or any other country.

Travelling to Chile with a clothes iron

Can a clothes iron go in my carry on luggage?

According to the TSA guidelines for clothes irons [10] there are no restrictions when carrying a mains powered clothes iron in your hand luggage through airport security in the US. The TSA recommends that you should verify that the airline that is taking you to Chile will allow clothes irons onboard and that it will fit in the overhead bin or underneath the seat of the airplane. The TSA also recommends wrapping wires tightly around clothes irons. If you intend to pack a fragile or expensive clothes iron in your hand held luggage then it is advisable to use hard carry on luggage [11] as this provides the most protection against bumps and knocks during transit.

Power converters for Chile

Can I use a voltage converter to use my normal clothes iron in Chile?

The correct model of voltage transformer [7] (or power converter) allows your clothes iron using a different voltage to operate with the 220 volt power outlet used in Chile. Travellers who want to bring along their existing clothes iron can use a power converter, however it can be more expensive to purchase a power converter than it is to purchase a dedicated dual voltage travel iron [2]. In addition, a travel clothes iron can be significantly lighter than a power converter making a travel clothes iron more suited for packing in luggage.

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

Voltage converter

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

A cheap, small and lightweight power adapter (or plug adapter) changes the shape of the plug on your clothes iron to slot into a power outlet in Chile, however a more expensive and heavier power converter [7] converts a 220 volt Chilean power outlet to work with a non-220 volt clothes iron.

How to use a clothes iron in Chile using a type C power adapter

Learn how to power a clothes iron in Chile with a two pinned Type C power charger.

  1. Check that your iron is either a dual voltage travel iron [2] or is compatible with a 220 volt power supply but if not then do not continue as you might damage your iron, blow a fuse or create an electrical fire hazard. Before using a dual voltage travel iron which can toggle between different voltages ensure you have set it to accept 220 volts to use in Chile; consult the owners manual for more information on how to do this.
  2. If the plug shape on your clothes iron isn't the same type of outlet used in Chile you will need to bring a Type C plug adapter [4]. The power adapter will fit different plugs from other countries for use in an electrical outlet found in Chile simply by changing the shape of the plug, however the adapter doesn't change the frequency or voltage of the clothes iron to work with a 220 volt supply.
  3. Insert the Type C plug adapter in the Chilean power outlet. The power supply (sometimes called a Type C power outlet [3] or Europlug) is recognised by the 2 adjacent holes where the twin plug outlet pins go.
  4. Plug in the clothes iron into the Type C plug adapter.
  5. Turn on the Chilean power outlet. The iron should now be ready for use in Chile.
How to use a clothes iron in Chile using a type C power adapter

How to use a clothes iron in Chile using a type L power adapter

Simple instructions showing how to use your clothes iron in Chile using a Type L power adapter.

  1. Ensure that the iron is either a dual voltage travel iron [2] or is compatible with a 220 volt power supply but if it doesn't then do not continue as you may damage your iron, blow a fuse or create an electrical fire hazard. Before using a travel iron which can toggle between different voltages make sure you have set it to accept 220 volts for use in Chile; please consult the user guide for more details on how to do this.
  2. If the type of power outlet which is used in Chile won't take the plug shape on your clothes iron you'll need to use a Type L plug adapter [6]. This power adapter will help adapt different plugs from other countries for use with an electrical outlet used in Chile simply by changing the shape of the plug, however it doesn't change the frequency or voltage of the clothes iron to work with a 220 volt outlet.
  3. Begin the process by plugging the Type L plug adapter in the Chilean power outlet. You can identify this squashed hexagon shaped plug outlet by 3 large round adjecent holes forming a line. Note there are two different types of Type L power supply, one rated for 10 amps and one for 16 amps. A 10 amp version has 4mm thick round pins spaced 5.5mm apart and the 16 amp version has slightly larger 5mm pins which are spaced 8mm apart.
  4. Next plug in the clothes iron into the Type L plug adapter.
  5. Switch on the Chilean power outlet. You can now turn on the iron for use in Chile.
How to use a clothes iron in Chile using a type L power adapter

See also

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chile - Chile Wikipedia web 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/typeC.htm - Type C power outlet
  4. Type C plug adapter - Allows appliances to connect to Type C power outlets without converting voltage
  5. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/typeL.htm - Type L power outlet
  6. Type L plug adapter - Allows appliances to connect to Type L power outlets without converting voltage
  7. 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
  8. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mains_electricity_by_country - WikiPedia - Mains electricity by country
  9. http://www.iec.ch/worldplugs/list_bylocation.htm - IEC World Plugs by location
  10. https://apps.tsa.dhs.gov/mytsa/cib_results.aspx?search=clothes%20iron - TSA guidelines for clothes irons
  11. Hard carry on luggage - Example of hard cases, suitcases and luggage suitable for airline carry on.