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Technical information

Technical information that accompanies almost electric item from TV’s and radios to jig saws and planers can be complex and unclear, especially if several different measurement figures are used. It is very common to see measurement such as cm, m, mm, inches and feet all used within a products specification, electrical measurements can be the same and can be even more confusing as electronics use separate measurements such as volts and AMPS.

To this end Hire station have created a dedicated ‘Power Information’ page. Here you can find out how to convert watts to kilowatts, horsepower to watts, how to calculate watts, AMPS and much more.

What's the difference between Volts, AMPS and Ohms?

The easiest and most simply way of exampling the difference between Volts, AMPS and Ohms is by using the ‘Hose Pipe’ analogy.


Volts or voltage is equivalent to the pressure which is in a hose pipe with a hand operated nozzle. Even when the nozzle is deactivated there is still water pressure in the pipe just as if a switch is turned off there is still voltage within the circuit.


AMPS (the current) are the equivalent of the rate of flow so in the analogy AMPS would be how many gallons per minute are moving through the pipe work. For instance when a light switch is turned off the voltage is still present but there are no AMPS (nothing is flowing).


The Ohm is the unit of measurement for electrical resistance named after German physicist Georg Simon Ohm.

Within the ‘hose pipe’ analogy the Ohm would be the size of your hose pipe.

So in layman’s terms?

Volt = your water pressure

AMP = your flow rate

Ohm = your hose pipe size

How do i convert different measurements?

That's easy! Simply use to conversion chart below to turn horsepower into kilowatts, kilo volt amps into kilowatts and even how to calculate watts and AMPS.


Hire Station's conversion chart

What's the difference between 110V and 240V?

110V electrics are the standard voltage for professional working sites. 110V is used for safety reasons as it helps prevent injury or death should a cable be accidentally cut and the person makes a connection between the live conductors and the earth. When 110V power is used two 55 volt lines are provided out of phase meaning if someone does rupture the cabling the highest shock they will receive is 55 volts, which is unlikely to be fatal.

Most 110V cabling is bright yellow and to use your equipment at home you will a transformer to convert the electrical current. With the number of accidents reported on building sites, 110V is considered the much safer option.

240V electrics are your standard ‘household’ voltage power. Most leads are black or blue and will be power domestic tools. 240V is considered more dangerous hence the reason it is not used on building sites. If a 240V piece of equipment is used from a 110V power supply the machine will only run at about 25% of its power and it is highly likely it will stall but isn’t likely to cause any damage.

Most equipment within the UK is labelled as '230V' as this is considered the 'nominal voltage' to earth. This is also done to bring the UK system into harmony with the rest of Europe.

Running Power Table

Here at Hire Station we have created a 'Running Watts' power table. You can check roughly what power requirements certain tools need to perform correctly.

Knowing these figures also helps when selecting a compatible and competent transformer or generator.

Electrical item

Running Watts

8 - 23mm electric drill

350 - 1000 

Jig saw


Flood lamp



500 - 1000 

100 - 300mm angle grinder

550 - 2500 


700 - 1000 

Impact wrench


Orbital sander


Cement mixer

1000 - 1500

Circular saw 

1000 - 1500

Fan heater

1000 - 3000 

Concrete poker


Hot air gun

1500 - 2000 

200mm floor sander




300 - 400mm bench saw

3000 - 6000 

3HP air compressor


130 - 200AMP arc welder

3500 - 7000



250 - 350mm bench saw

4000 - 7000 

What's the difference between running watts and surge watts?

The basic measurement of power for electrical items is the Watt. Almost every electrical item will have two separate measurements:

Running watts: This is the amount of power required to continuously run an electrical item

Surge watts: This is the amount of power required to actually start the electrical item

Certain electrical products such as light bulbs have the same running and surge power but larger, more electrical thirsty such as air conditioning units, refrigerators and heat pumps can require upwards of twice there running power simply to start with some heating pumps requiring 15,000 Watts to run but over 30,000 Watts to start.

Useful Information

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When you hire a dehumidifier from Hire Station, using the equipment couldn’t be simpler. All you need to do is make sure all the windows and doors are closed, position the equipment in a convenient location, plug the dehumidifier in and press the 'on' button!

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Carpet Cleaners

Need to hire a carpet cleaner today? Our range of industrial carpet cleaner equipment can tackle any job!

Carpet Cleaner hire from Brandon Hire Station is quick, simple and very economical. Our range of carpet cleaners includes both the Domestic 240V carpet cleaner and the more industrial upright carpet cleaner.

Carpet cleaner rental is a fast growing sector, so give your carpets a professional finish and hire a carpet cleaner online today!


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We can offer quality and reliable equipment at fantastic prices, delivered direct to your door including chainsaw hire, wood chipper hire, a range of strimmers and hedge trimmers, lawn mowers and much more!

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