Thursday, October 21, 2010

Yo lo enchufo

Every week I have an intercambio with my amiga from Peru.  Well, on this particular occassion while I was setting up my laptop she says:

Yo lo enchufo

Surprisingly, while I didn't understand what she said, my eyes didn't glaze over.  I politely said "¿Cómo?", and she repeated it again.  That's when my eyes glazed over, because my ears just weren't getting the job done.

Yo lo enchufo 
I'll plug it in

She was referring to the power cord for my laptop.  It's amazing how after 5 years of learning Spanish it never occurred to me learn how to talk about plugging things in, nor had any book ever bothered to mention it.  Oh well.

Let's go into a little more detail.

to plug in

Dámelo para enchufarlo
Give it to me so I can plug it can

¿Puedes enchufarlo?
Can you plug it in?

Well, now we know how to talk about plugging a cord in, but we still don't know how to talk about what we plug the cord into.  The word for socket, plug or outlet is enchufe.  You can also say tomacorriente.

But this is where things get a little tricky. A search for enchufe fotos returns the following:

As well as:

 It turns out enchufe can mean both the wall socket and the actual plug.  The search also turned up one other photo:

I just thought that one was kinda funny.  Let's get back on track.

If you want to talk about the actual plug without the ambiguity, then use the word clavija.   

Now that we've got the thing plugged in, the verb desenchufar means to uplug.

Ya lo desenchufé
I already unplugged it

Está desenchufado
It's unplugged

Puedes desenchufarlo
You can unplug it

If you'd like a little more practice with enchufar, then check out this great free podcast.


Created by the good folks at Learning Spanish Like Crazy, this podcast will help you learn the correct usage and conjugation of the verb enchufar .   But make yourself comfortable before you start listening, because it's 17 minutes long.

So there you go.  Next time you need something plugged in or unplugged in Spanish, you'll know exactly what to say.

Lastly, if you enjoy the podcast, you may find the Learning Spanish Like Crazy downloadable audio courses a great way to learn Spanish.  The learning method is exactly the same as the podcast. There are 3 levels, one for each stage of the learning process - Level 1 (beginners), Level 2 (intermediate) and level 3 (advanced).

¡Nos vemos!


  1. Tus bloges son bien maravillosos. A cuento a la palabra "enchufes", este puede significar tambien "contactos", por ejemplo si quieres encontrar una chamba bien remunerada, tienes que tener "enchufes", o sea amigos o parientes alli. Saludos desde Polonia :)

  2. what about "te lo enchufe por detroit"

  3. plogear <> to plug it