Everyday Life - Electricity
Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) is a major provider of electricity to the Kanto region including Tokyo and Yokohama, as well as Yamanashi and parts of Shizuoka. Since the liberalization of the energy market in 2016, it has been possible for customers to choose their own energy supplier. Unfortunately, foreign language support from most providers is lacking, so it is difficult to compare prices if you don’t read Japanese. As such, you may find it simpler just to apply for electricity service through TEPCO.
TEPCO Customer Center https://www7.tepco.co.jp/ep/index-e.html
Contact TEPCO to apply for or terminate the electricity service, or to request the “payment by credit card” application form.
TEPCO Customer Center Contact
|Service Area||Applications||General Inquiries|
|Koto, Sumida, Edogawa, Katsushika, Taito, Arakawa, Adachi,Shibuya, Setagaya, Shinagawa, Meguro and Ota wards + Daiba||0120-995-001||0120-995-002|
|Chiyoda, Chuo, Minato(excluding Daiba), Shinjuku, Bunkyo, Itabashi, Kita,Nerima, Suginami, Toshima, and Nakano wards + Islands||0120-995-005||0120-995-006|
|Tokyo area excluding 23 wards||0120-995-661||0120-995-662|
|Kawasaki-shi and Yokohama-shi excluding Izumi,Totsuka and some parts of Konan wards||0120-995-771||0120-995-772|
|Kanagawa Prefecture excluding the above area||0120-995-775||0120-995-776|
Devices from overseas
Japanese devices use two-pin plugs like those used in North America, and the main voltage is 100V. Devices from outside Japan with an AC adapter displaying 100v-240v (such as laptops and phone chargers) will work in Japan, but may need a plug adaptor if not from North America. Devices requiring a significantly higher voltage than 100v will not function without a transformer.
Large electronics chains such as Bic Camera, Yodobashi Camera and LABI sell everything from cameras and computers to kitchen appliances and gadgets. Some online retailers, such as Amazon Japan, have English-language versions of their websites. If you do not mind buying used items, Craigslist Tokyo has a steady stream of expats looking to offload items, and there are second-hand “recycle” shops across the city selling all manner of appliances and furniture.
|Bic Camera||Shinjuku, Yurakucho, Shibuya, Akasaka-Mitsuke, Yokohama,etc||http://www.biccamera.com/
|Yodobashi Camera||Shinjuku, Akihabara, Ueno, Yokohama, etc.||https://www.yodobashi.com/ec/store/list/
|LABI (Yamada Denki)||Ikebukuro, Shinjuku, Shibuya, Jiyugaoka, etc.||http://www.yamadalabi.com/
Home Appliance Settings
The following is a list of commonly-found buttons and settings found on controls for household appliances, with their English translations.
- change function
Washing machine switches
- regular cycle
Washlet Control Panel
- shower (backside)
- soft shower
- bidet (for ladies)
- water pressure
- strong flush
- gentle (half) flush