Installing an electrical outlet can be a daunting task for some people. Electrical outlets are necessary, however, and it is important to install them correctly the first time so that you don’t have any problems later on. If you have never installed an outlet before or if your knowledge is a little rusty, this article will help walk you through the process of installing one step by step.
- Step One: Make sure the outlet box is securely mounted to a wall stud. Use drywall screws for this purpose and make sure they are in all four corners of the outlet box. If you have access from behind, insert an anchor screw into each corner as well.
- Step Two: Now measure how far away your electrical panel is from where you want to install your new outlet (this will determine if you need an extension cord). Measure it out on the floor with tape or pencil marks so that there is enough space left over for future outlets should you need them down the road. Once measured, cut two lengths of 14/0 wire about six inches long and strip both ends off using a pair of pliers. You will need to also strip off about two inches of the plastic coating.
- Step Three: Twist one end of each wire together with a regular screwdriver and then install them onto the appropriate terminal screws on your electrical panel. The neutral wires should be connected to either silver or brass screws, while black wires are for hot cables that go into outlets as well as light switches.
- Step Four: Now it is time to bore an access hole in the wall near where you want your new outlet installed. In order to do so, insert both thumbs into the pre-drilled holes at an angle – push hard until they pop out through the other side of the drywall (you may have some help from someone else). It can take up to an hour of sawing back and forth for the hole to be big enough.
- Step Five: Use a pencil or marker to trace out as many holes (both vertically down from the top edge, horizontally across on both sides) that will accommodate your electrical box size – this can range anywhere between 14 inches square up to 24″ x 12″. The most common size is usually 20″x14″, so I’ll use these measurements in my example below.
- Step Six: Now it’s time to install the new outlet! Make sure you have all your necessary wires hanging through one side of the wall first before proceeding with installing anything else; we don’t want them getting stuck behind drywall later when they are pulled through other holes.
- Step Seven: Screw the metal outlet box into your hole (keeping in mind that it’s always best to install boxes from below if possible). This should take about three screws.
- Step Eight: Now you’re ready for the electrical work! Strip off a few inches of insulation with wire strippers so that there is bare copper exposed on both ends and push one end of the black, white, red, or green wires up through an opening along one side; repeat for all four holes.
- Step Nine: Connect each color wire to its corresponding screw terminal inside the outlet – this can be tricky but just use trial and error until they are connected correctly. Black goes onto brass-colored terminals, brown goes onto silver-colored terminals, white goes onto gold-colored terminals, and green goes on copper-colored ones.
- Step Ten: Now twist the black wires together so they are touching one another; there will be a small gap in between them where the white wire should go. Place your fingers over that gap to hold it tight while using pliers to wrap two turns of electrical tape around their connection – this is essential for safety reasons as it prevents you from accidentally plugging anything into an outlet without first turning off the power!
Bonus: Use more electrical tape (or shrink tubing if preferred) to make sure all connections inside the box are tightly secured against accidental disconnections. To install a new ground screw on top of your outlet, simply place it through any hole in the box and tighten it by turning with a screwdriver.
Tips for your electrical Outlet
- Tip One: Whenever possible, install receptacles near room entrances for easy access without having to bend down or crawl on the floor. This can save time when trying to unplug cords at night while getting ready for bed – simply duck behind furniture and flip off power from the wall instead of crawling around under furniture looking for outlets!
- Tip Two: Running new electrical wire through walls will require additional tools like a hammer drill; if doing so as part of a home remodeling project, check with a professional Boca Raton Electrician about how to do it safely.
- Tip Three: Make sure you install the receptacle in an area where there is enough space for plugs and cords to connect easily without hitting anything else. This will make life so much easier!
- Tip Four: If doing any electrical work around water or outdoors be very careful of what you’re doing when plugging in cords as moisture can cause them to spark and potentially start a fire.
Always remember that before installing new outlets, always turn off power at the breaker switches located on walls nearby; this ensures safety during installation while preventing accidental shocks from electricity being exposed near water sources like sinks or bathtubs.
- Tip Five: Use a step ladder to install receptacles high on the wall if you need to clear things from hitting them or they will be too close for comfort. This way, your installation is safe and won’t come undone any time soon!
- Tip Six: Install electrical outlets with ground fault circuit interruption (GFCI) so that water cannot enter and create an electric shock hazard as this can potentially kill someone instantly. If it does not have GFCI protection then make sure there are no areas where water could cause contact with current-carrying parts in order to prevent electrocution hazards.
- Tip Seven: Use lamp sockets with a grounding screw for lamps that are not grounded to install them safely.
- Tip Eight: When installing the electrical outlet, make sure you have enough wire before cutting it. This will help prevent surprises in which too little wire is available and has to be purchased after installation of the new receptacle because it may cost more money at this point than initially expected.
- Tip Nine: If there is an existing ground fault circuit interruption (GFCI) receptacle then this should be replaced by a tamper-resistant GFCI outlet if possible as they cannot be turned off without unplugging them or using tools like pliers on specific wiring connections inside of the device’s faceplate. These protect you from electric shock or electrocution.
- Tip Ten: When buying a new electrical outlet, make sure the wiring is compatible with the system in your home. This means that if you have aluminum wiring then it will be best to buy an outlet that also has this same type of wiring because other types may not work properly and could cause fires.
With a little bit of time, you can take care of this project yourself. The following 10 simple steps should get the job done in no time at all! You’ll be able to enjoy your new outlet in no time and save some money on hiring a Boca Raton electrician.