A Brief History of the World’s Electric Standards

map with electrical outlet types

If you have every travelled abroad you will remember bringing electrical adapters in your bags to charge your phone and camera. Did you ever wonder why the outlets we use here in the US didn’t work in your hotel? Gizmodo had a very interesting post several days ago discussing why power outlets “look so weird” in other countries. The most interesting part of the article for me was reading about the early electrical systems in our country: “There was no easy way to tap into the power supplying small appliances. If you had a table lamp or a hair dryer or some other low voltage gadget, you’d have to knock down a wall and hard-wire it into the house’s electrical grid.”

We here at Willow Glen Electric have never had to rewire an electrical system that old, but we have rewired plenty of old knob and tube electrical systems in homes over 100 years old in the San Jose area.  Next time you safely unplug your hairdryer or phone charger, remember how lucky you with today’s modern electrical systems!