Bathrooms in the UK may have a shaver socket that is (to my understanding) limited to supplying 200mA, is protected by an isolation transformer and uses a two pronged plug similiar but not identical to the common Europlug (BS4573).

I just bought a shaver that came with a BS1363 plug, the common 3 rectangular pronged plug in the UK. Is it safe and allowed to adapt between the two? According to wikipedia, BS1363-3 allows adapting a BS1363 socket to a BS4573 plug. That is, it allows plugging in a shaver with a shaver plug into a regular BS1363 socket. It does not seem to allow going the other way.

I think this is safe to do, the load I want to use consumes on the order of 50-80mA and is doubly insulated (it is a shaver after all). The only concern one might have is that such an adapter might allow a person to plug in a more problematic load. Then again, the shaver socket already has provisions for plugging in an american two pronged plug.


No, providing an adapter to allow a standard 3-pin plug to be used on a shaver socket means that someone else may decide to plug in an iron or hair dryer or hair curlers which it is not rated for.

The shaver socket in the UK may be protected by a ELCB (earth leakage circuit breaker) which will also limit the permitted load. But in other countries that may be different, in some countries that shaver socket is just a normal outlet protected at the supply end.

  • 2
    Ok, that confirms my suspicion. I assume replacing the plug on the the appliance (an electric shaver) is the way to go. – maxf130 Apr 13 '19 at 10:07
  • 1
    @maxf130 That is the best idea, then the socket stays standard - and you have checked the load so with the correct plug good to go. – Solar Mike Apr 13 '19 at 10:10

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