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SANS 164-2 is the Preferred Configuration for New Installations in South Africa

In South Africa, a new plug design per the SANS 164-2 standard has recently become the preferred configuration.

This announcement came from SABS (South African Bureau of Standards). “It will be the preferred configuration for wall socket-outlets in all new installations,” explained Willa Breed, SABS Electrotechnical Standards Manager.

Currently, the most common plug and socket used in South Africa is the SANS 164-1. There is not, however, a definite timeline for implementing the new SANS 164-2 plug. At this time, it is not mandatory, only preferred. It may be a number of years before the SANS 164-1 is no longer used. “The idea is to eventually phase it out, but it is expected to be over a very long period of time,” Breed said.

As this transition takes place, the relation between the new plug (SANS 164-2) and the existing one (SANS 164-1) is that “the SANS 164-2 plug could be connected by way of an adaptor to a SANS 164-1 socket-outlet,” according to Breed.

Equipment manufacturers will need to determine which plug to use on their equipment. “As the SANS 164-2 configuration is preferred for socket-outlets in new installations only, appliances may have plugs compliant with either the SANS 164-1 or SANS 164-2 configuration,” explained Breed. “In older installations, the SANS 164-2 plug would be used with an adapter to fit into the SANS 164-1 socket-outlet. The manufacturer will at this stage not be required to fit a SANS 164-2 plug to an appliance.”

Interpower is pleased to announce it now offers the new SANS 164-2 South Africa plug. This plug pattern is similar to the Brazilian plug, but the pin dimensions are different between the two. The SANS 164-2 plug is rated at 16A/250V. According to SABS requirements, the plug must have a test report, but an approval marking is optional.

The existing SANS 164-1 South Africa plug will still be offered by Interpower.

SANS 164-2 (preferred configuration)

P/N 86267030       
SANS 164-1 (current plug pattern)

P/N 86265560

If you have questions, Interpower offers free technical support. You can check the website at, e-mail (United States) or (United Kingdom) or contact Customer Service in the United States at (800) 662-2290 or in the United Kingdom at +44 (0)1908 295300.

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