Power bricks are often so big they partially cover adjoining outlets and make it difficult to plug all your gear onto a single power strip. Here are our favorite solutions for dealing with chunky plugs.
It almost seems like every company is a part of a secret competition to see who can make the biggest power brick, which leads to consumers trying to find creative ways to plug all of them in like you’re trying to put together a jigsaw puzzle. The jigsaw metaphor feels particularly appropriate when different plugs have different plug-prong orientations that result in long narrow plugs covering multiple outlets on the strip. Overall it’s a pretty frustrating experience just about anyone can relate to.
A Word of Caution
Before we dive deep into some awesome solutions for your power bricks, a word of caution is in order before you go plugging everything you own into your new power strip.
Just because you can plug a whole bunch of stuff into a single outlet, doesn’t mean that you should. An electrical circuit can only handle so much current, and if you end up plugging a bunch of power-hogging devices into the same outlet, there’s a good chance you’ll overload the circuit and trip the breaker. Or even worse, start a fire.
So before you go crazy parking everything on one power strip, take stock on what devices you have and whether any of them use a lot of electricity (what you care about here is the watts used by each device on the strip. Stuff like a space heater or a gaming PC use a lot of energy. Stuff like a cellphone charger (even a whole power strip worth of them) uses very little energy. The real benefit to using these strips isn’t the ability to run 20 high-watt items simultaneously, but to plug all your gear in at once so you’re not crawling under your desk to unplug your printer so you can use your paper shredder.
Now, let’s get into our top picks for the best power strips to handle all those dumb power bricks.
Bestten 24-Outlet Heavy Duty Metal Power Strip ($48)
If you want a power strip with the most outlets, this Bestten 24-outlet power strip is your best bet.
It has an aluminum body, so it’s great for a garage or workshop where it’ll be exposed to some rough conditions, but it’s also perfect for casual usage in a home office where you need to plug in a bunch of stuff.
The outlets aren’t spaced apart to leave room for power bricks, but the nice thing is that there’s still plenty of space to plug in plenty of devices. So even if a power brick covers up adjacent outlets, you still have plenty of other outlets at your disposal.
And as you may have noticed from the photo, it’s nearly three feet long, so make sure you have a desk long enough to mount it to, or some other place where it will fit.
Belkin 12-Outlet Pivot-Plug Power Strip Surge Protector ($30)
If you prefer to stick with a traditional-looking power strip, but still want some flexibility (quite literally), then Belkin’s Pivot-Plug power strip is a great option.
It has four fixed outlets for plugging in regular power cords, and then eight outlets that can each individually rotate 90 degrees so that you can accompany your bulky power bricks without it blocking adjacent outlets.
Oh, and it’s also a surge protector, so you’ll have that handy protection against electrical spikes and fluctuations.
APC 8-Outlet Surge Protector Power Strip ($16)
If you need something a bit more compact, but still want plenty of room for a few of your larger power bricks, this APC 8-outlet power strip will do the job.
It has three outlets that are spaced out enough so that you can easily fit in your power bricks, as well as five outlets that are regularly spaced.
Plus, it’s the cheapest out of the bunch, so if you’re strictly on a tight budget, $16 is a pretty good price for a surge protector.
If You Want to Keep Your Existing Power Strip
I don’t blame you if you like your current power strip—perhaps its the amazing surge protection or just the overall quality that you love. Either way, if you want to use your existing power strip, this ten-pack of 1-foot extension cords for $22 will make room for your power bricks.
Basically, these allow you to still plug in your power bricks into your power strip, but the 1-foot extension means that the power bricks are off to the side, rather than being plugged directly into the power strip and taking up valuable space.
It’s a really simple solution for dealing with power bricks, and they’re even great for dealing with bulky smart plugs.