The Step-By-Step Approach To A New Outlet

18 September 2017
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Wall outlets are essential to anything you do that requires electricity. Some homes have too many outlets in the wrong spots, while others have too few outlets overall. If you need a new outlet or have to move another outlet, your local electrical contractor can help. Otherwise, you will need to follow these steps.

Find the Wall Stud Nearest the Spot Where You Want the Outlet

Wall studs are the vertical boards behind the plaster and paint. All outlets, regardless of type, are screwed into the stud boards to hold the outlets in place. Usually, stud boards are every twelve feet, but they may be spread farther out if there are lots of windows in your home. Plan to put the outlet on or very near the stud board after you have located it.

Turn off the Power to This Area of the House

Before you start messing with any wires, turn off the power to this area of your house. You do not want an electric shock when you connect new wiring to old or new wiring to the power box! Then continue with the next steps to complete the project.

Measure and Mark off the Opening

Next, use the outlet box's measurements to mark off the size of opening you will need in the wall. Use pencil to create a cutting guide on the wall. Then use a small reciprocating saw to cut the square or rectangle hole out of the wall.

Run 14-2 Wire from the Opening into the Basement

Special wire for outlets is commonly called "14-2" wire. It is a set of wires bundled and insulated inside a flat sheath of heat-resistant vinyl rubber. It needs to run from the hole you just created into the basement. Leave a few feet of wire dangling from the hole while you head downstairs to find the other end. When you find the other end, pull it down through the basement ceiling/first floor.

Connect the 14-2 Wire to a Power Source

If you are creating a new outlet instead of moving one, you will need to connect this wiring to the nearest fuse box or breaker. Hopefully, that is not farther away than the wire has length. If you are just relocating an outlet, disconnect the wiring from the old outlet and connect/couple its wires to the new wiring. You can reuse the old outlet box, if you want. Test the power by turning it back on to see if the outlet works. Then finish screwing the new outlet into the stud wall.

Contact a service, like Dunedin Electric Co., Inc., for more help.