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I'd like to know if these two sentences:

These Electric Vehicles (EVs) are plugged-in to domestic plugs, while those EVs are plugged-in to public charging stations. Both of them should be plugged-out at 6:00 p.m.

are correct. In particular, my doubts are about:

  • is it right to use the hyphen?
  • is plugged-in correct, or should I use other forms (such as plugged, ...)?
  • is plugged-out ok, or should I use other forms (such as unplugged, ...)?
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    Use "plugged in" and "unplugged". Where have you read "plugged-out"? Commented Jul 12, 2021 at 15:44
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    Thank you, got it! Honestly, I don't remember where I read "plugged-out", but, after reading here, it seems to be a very uncommon expression, used in Ireland, and a few other countries.
    – rainbow
    Commented Jul 12, 2021 at 20:05

1 Answer 1

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The word plug can mean two very different things:

  • something that blocks a pipe or other conduit carrying fluid, etc.
    • Context is typically plumbing or piping.
  • something on the edge of cable that connects it to a socket.
    • Context is typically electrical.

Plain non-phrasal plug will typically imply something to do with plumbing or pipes.

The drain is plugged with hair.

Plug in, or plug up in some cases, will typically imply an electrical context.

The power cord is plugged in the wall.

Plugged up sometimes means plug in, especially if we're talking about a job or setup process with connecting cords to sockets, but it can also refer to something being clogged, so context is important for plug up.

I plugged up all the cords. What's next (setup or job context)

The bathtub is plugged up so no water is getting out.

Plugged out does not mean a cord is disconnected from an outlet. The best it could mean is that there's some blockage in a pipe outside, but even then it's somewhat awkward.

Also none of these use the hyphen.

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  • Ok, thank you, very clear! Another question: in my specific case: "plugged into domestic plugs/charging stations" could be a good alternative to "plugged in to domestic plugs/charging stations"?
    – rainbow
    Commented Jul 12, 2021 at 20:19

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