I live in the Philippines and the standard for electrical outlets for residential areas here isn't that rigid like with Western countries. A lot of houses/apartments here doesn't have a ground terminal in their electrical sockets. The status quo here is that the additional ground terminal is not necessary since most appliances used for homes are already double-insulated and adding it would just incur additional cost. Thus, most outlets here are just wired with live and neutral.

However, to further complicate things, a lot of appliances sold here have plugs that are either flat-pronged (Type-A), or round-pronged (Type-C a.k.a. Europlug). Thus, universal outlets which are compatible with both of those plugs (like this) are also quite common. Although, sockets exclusively for Type-A plugs are more popular here and we just use cheater plugs (like this) for appliances which have Type-C plugs.

Given that, I've noticed that most Type-A sockets in my current residence often lose their grip even after just a few months unlike with Type-C outlets. This got me thinking whether it's better to just replace most of my Type-A sockets with Type-C ones and just use a cheater plug for my devices with Type-A plugs. By design, are receptacles for round-pronged plugs really better than receptacles for flat-pronged outlets in terms of durability? I've read that Type-C plugs adds additional grip to the socket since the pins are not completely parallel unlike with Type-A plugs.

  • Probably it might be more of what you get is what you pay. Most outlets usually come in cheap, good, or better prices. Look for well made/better quality outlets/plugs. Usually with electrics it is better to have fewer connections, plug to outlet is better than plug to adapter to outlet.
    – crip659
    Mar 21, 2022 at 23:22
  • In my experience in the US with the flat-bladed plugs, some of the really old 2-prong (ungrounded) outlets will start to loose their grip on the plug, but usually it's only the old ones.
    – FreeMan
    Mar 22, 2022 at 12:28

1 Answer 1


Those "Type 1” (really, NEMA 1-15) sockets are failing because they are cheaply built and not listed by a reputable agency like UL. Quality spec grade sockets will perform properly, but do not put 240V on a NEMA 1-15 type connector! Or any other NEMA 1- or 5- type. Those are 120V sockets, and all appliances built for them throughout the entire world (except for the Philippines) are made for 120V and may well catch fire if fed 240V.

Since the Philippines is trying to transition to "Euro style" power (partly as a rebellion against colonialism), they should be using sockets and plugs actually intended for 240V, such the Europlug used in Spain ironically, or any neighboring 240V countries not in the US sphere of influence - Au/NZ, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, etc.

If you want the American sphere of influence, use the NEMA 2-15 or 6-15, which are specifically made for 240V. Yes, the USA is a 240V country.

If you receive an appliance with a NEMA 1-15 or 5-15 (“Type 2") connector, lop it off and fit a 240V plug.

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A few sockets, for illustration. NEMA 2- is simply NEMA 6- without the round-ish ground pin. Likewise Note "NEMA 1-" is ungrounded NEMA 5-. Not to be confused with the "Type 1" / "Type A" whatever that travel people use.

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