Difference Between Power and Distribution Transformers
By Andrew Parker - July 22, 2022

A transformer is an electrical device set up to transfer electrical currents from one alternating current circuit to one or more circuits, usually with little to no physical contact between them – an effect of the magnetic induction principle – and without changing the frequency or phase of the current. Usually, a transformer works by increasing the voltage of the current, known as stepping up or reducing it – known as stepping down.

Table Summary

It can either function as Step-up or step-down, but usually step-up.It is strictly a step-down transformer.
Designed to withstand low load fluctuationsDesigned to withstand high load fluctuations
It has a power rating of more than 200 MVAIt has a power rating of less than 200 MVA
Maximum Efficiency is set at 100% loadMaximum Efficiency is set at 75% load. 


A Power transformer performs the duties of a typical transformer, which is the transformation of alternating voltage and current of different values at the same frequency through electromagnetic induction to transmit electricity.

A Distribution transformer is used to transfer power to individuals on an electricity distribution system. Also known as a service transformer, it is responsible for stepping down the voltage in the distribution lines right before it is transferred to the consumer. The insulation type classifies different distribution poles, number of phases, voltage class, and even where it is mounted before use.

Power Transformer VS Distribution Transformer

A Power Transformer functions differently from a distribution transformer as the voltage of power it transmits is usually a high voltage. All Distribution Transformers operate by stepping down high incoming voltages. This is not the same for all Power transformers. Due to the different amounts of energy they work with on average, they are also designed to withstand various load fluctuations, Power Transformers for low loads and Distribution Transformers for high loads. Power Transformers are set up far away from the consumer in commercial electricity distribution, while Distribution Transformers are set up much closer.