How to Replace a Switched Electrical Outlet


How to Install a Replaced Electrical Outlet

Replacing your switches and outlets in your home yourself can save you a lot of money. Most times it is pretty simple to do. We find that DIYers can get hung up on three way and four way switches and also switched outlets. In some cases, someone may have replaced a switched outlet before you and did it incorrectly. If you have a room with a light switch in it, that does not seem to do anything, then this is probably the case.

If you open up your receptacle box and find that there are red and black wires behind the outlet then this receptacle was probably once wired to be a switched outlet. The most important thing to remember when wiring up a switched outlet is that you need to break off the metal tab that bridges the 2 hot screws together. If you do not, then the black (or hot) wires will always feed the top receptacle, rendering the switch wire (red wire) useless. The easiest way to break off the metal tab is by using needle nose pliers. You only want to break the tab off for the hot screws. Do not break off the tab for the neutral wires.


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