Click for Home Page Click for Contact Us Page Click for FAQ's Page Click for About Us Page Click for Sitemap Navigation
Main Menu
Chinese washing machine connector tap - Click to Enlarge

Image: Chinese washing machine connector - Click to Enlarge

Image: Modern Chinese Plumbing. Unbelievable  - Click to Enlarge

Image: Modern push-fit Chinese joints - Click to Enlarge

Image: Replacement toilet cistern internals - Click to Enlarge

Image: Typical Calor Gas fitting - Click to Enlarge

Image: New Standard Chinese 3-pin Plug - Click to Enlarge

Image: Typical flourescent light - Click to Enlarge

Image: Sliding Windows - Click to Enlarge

Image: Chinese curtain rails - Click to Enlarge

Image: Some useful tools - Click to Enlarge
How To
DIY - Electricity
China uses 220 volt mains electricity supply, with modern plugs having a maximum load of 13 amps. Halogen spotlights may run off low voltage DC current, except for the mains AC current versions = Don't presume!

Chinese electrics can appear slightly weird to those of you used to the consistency of Western countries. New houses are now following a basically international wiring and standards code, but most dwellings you encounter will still have the old systems in place.

The old rules go like this:

1. Use any colour wire you like when first-fitting a home. Do not be consistent with wiring from outlet to outlet, and use green wire as much as possible: for Live, Negative, and Earth feeds. If green gets too boring, then make it colourful by using any pretty wire you just happen to have handy - or that is on discount. These include: Red, Yellow, Blue, White, Black; and the very pleasant new yellow and green designs.

2. To qualify to be a Chinese Electrician you need to show you have done it before. If you can't do this, then you will be an Electrician's 'assistant'.

3. Switches on plugs should only ever be used to control other unrelated things - such as nearby lights.

4. There is absolutely no limit to the number of wires you can cram into the back of a wall socket. If they don't all fit into the terminal block, then tape some to a wire that does using cheap plastic tape. This wire can be a different colour.

5. Amongst the mass of green wires, try to add one red wire to both the Positive and Negative terminals of each socket or switch - this shows to others that you understood how you did the original wiring.

6. If upgrading an existing installation, then try and use different coloured wires or green as much as possible.

7. Chinese use the 'Chinese Ring Main System' - which is similar to the west, except that each ring controls all the outlets in one room only - that is: power sockets, lights, a/c, whatever.

DIY Directory    
Category   Comments    
Power sockets   There used to be 18 different types, sizes and shapes of power connection sockets. In 2010 this is reduced to 2 only: flat 2-pin and offset 3-pin (Pictured).

Still common are square 3-pin, and large round 3-pin which have 15amp rating and are often used for a/c units.
Replacing Power Sockets   The replacement socket you use should be essentially the same as the existing one - therefore if it has 2 switches and 2 power outlets, buy a replacement with 2 switches and at least 2 power outlets.

Try and replace with the new standard international adapter style socket (Pictured) - this way you can plug anything into it, including British square-pins and shaver adapters.

Gently prize the socket away to reveal what lies behind (We are presuming you already know how to unscrew it from the wall). Be careful, as this could be quite full, and wires could come adrift.

If it is simple, replace the socket. If it looks confusingly complex, then take time out to understand what every wire does. The switch will probably control a light. Use an electrician's screwdriver to test for live feeds and don't presume! Draw a diagram if you need to. Once you fully understand what is happening here - replace the socket.
Strip Lights   Chinese strip lights come in all sizes, and two types.

Old style tubes are mounted on a panel that does not have a replaceable 'Starter'. These are efficient and are still sold today. However, we advise you to replace any faulty units with ones that do have a replaceable starter. These only cost a couple of £'s, and are well worth the investment. Consider that whilst you are at it, you may want to increase both the length of tube, and the wattage?

Fitting a replacement is pretty easy, and existing fixings can normally be used.
Consumer Units   These are usually quite modern and feature 'trip switches'. Each large room will have a dedicated circuit - which is 'ok' once you get your head round it. A/c units should have their own circuit on a special breaker. The Earth (Ground) may not have an external connection from this box. The main switch should turn off all power to your apartment - check the meter to see if it has stopped rotating, as sometimes it does not!    
We do have a lot of information to add to this page, so please call back next week.    
This information is as supplied by ourselves, and ably supported by our friends and various internet portals.
Search this Website
Search Query
DIY Pages
Image: Common Chinese bulbs - Click to Enlarge

Image: 9inch eco-friendly light fittings which are very common - Click to Enlarge

Image: UK Style Bayonet fitting - Click to Enlarge

Image: Typical flourescent light - Click to Enlarge

Image: My old washing machine plug socket - Click to Enlarge

Image: My new washing machine plug socket - Click to Enlarge

Image: No 'Earth' then? - Click to Enlarge

Image: A socket battery - Click to Enlarge

Image: Standard Chinese Consumer Unit - Click to Enlarge
Page Navigation: Top of Page
Link to: - Excellent Hosting and Support Services
Image for Decoration only
    Copyright Webmaster @ ChinaExpats Links