I've recently buy a lava lamp and it only works for EU, all of it is 220-240V. First I've buy the plug adapter (not converter for V) the light bulb is 240V R39 E14 30W, and it doesn't exist in 120V, the closer one is 120V R39 E17 30W, so I needed an extension for the socket to be able to screw the light bulb in. There's is a switch on/off too but I've been told I shouldn't use it at all.

I can see that the lamp works very well, expect it's a little bit more hot because the lightbulb extension put it higher and closer to the glass. I have put something around the glasses to let it sit higher, not touching the lightbulb (I may need to but it higher a little bit).

My concern are about the wire, they are made for 240V not 120V is there any danger? I'm not using the switch I just unplugged from the wall. If so, is it complicated to change the wire and the main socket completely to 120V ?

  • Most types of wire/cable is sized according to maximum amperage in the circuit(light bulb to outlet), not voltage(most wire can handle high volts). Most lights are very low amperage. One amp times 240 volts is only 240 watts(210 more watts than your light), 120 will be less. Most household circuits are safe for 13 amps(EU), 15 amps (NA).
    – crip659
    May 7, 2022 at 10:20
  • Why don't you just google 'lava lamp replacement bulb' for one that fits & is ready for your new local voltage? The cabling won't care, but the wax in the lamp will if you have the wrong bulb.
    – Tetsujin
    May 7, 2022 at 11:31
  • Because the size of light bulb screw is E14, I't doesn't exist in 120v, the closest is E17 so it is bigger and I needed an extension screw May 7, 2022 at 14:34
  • 1
    A new lava lamp is pretty cheap…
    – Jon Custer
    May 7, 2022 at 15:38
  • Figure out if it's the large or small size Lava Lamp, (assuming it's not a knock-off) and put a wanted ad in the local method of having wanted ads of your choice for a local base of that size. The jars get broken, so there's usually an excess of bases available...
    – Ecnerwal
    May 7, 2022 at 16:09

2 Answers 2


Most cordage in the world has a minimum of 300v with 600v being more common the reason this lamp should not be used in North America is a fault will most likely be on a much larger circuit without local fusing that is common in the Uk I would not use it on a breaker any larger than 15 amp but would recommend if you want to use it a fused receptacle where you can limit the fault current but this may cost as much as a new one or change the lamp to a 120v model and put a new plug on the cord this would be the safest way of my 2 suggestions.

  • 1
    This is one area where changing to a LED bulb wouldn't be a good idea... lol
    – JACK
    May 7, 2022 at 11:56
  • Standard ampere from wall in UK are 13 and in Canada it's 15, but I am using a 120V lightbulb, much less expensive, so is it safe? May 7, 2022 at 14:48
  • If you changed to a standard 120v lamp and had the correct plug this would be the safe way yes. The important thing is to have the correct wattage (wattage will relate to the amount of heat ) with the proper lamp wattage it will heat the wax at the bottom expand and float to the top then cool and drop back down and start the cycle over. Two high of a wattage it will heat and the wax stays at the top, two low and the wax will stay at the bottom.
    – Ed Beal
    May 7, 2022 at 16:49

Strictly speaking, in going from 240V 30W to 120V 30W, you have doubled the current in the wiring. But when you work out the current, it's gone from 0.125A to 0.25A. That's such a small current that it's not going to overheat the wiring.

I'm not sure why someone has told you not to use the switch.

  • Okay so I would need to have a lightbulb 120V 15W ? The person told me the switch could stop working because I'm using it in half the voltage it is suppose to be working on, i thought it would not cause any problem because it is not over the initial ampere or voltage it is suppose to cut, I am not very sure about using it May 7, 2022 at 14:38
  • 2
    @MaggieDubreuil No. Stick with 30W. It's the heat from the bulb that drives the lava lamp, and if you switch to a lower wattage one, it might not work.
    – Simon B
    May 7, 2022 at 16:04

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