Replace standard electrical outlets with tamper-resistant outlets for a safer home. They're inexpensive and easy to install.
By the DIY experts of The Family Handyman Magazine:June 2010
The interior cover on a tamper-resistant outlet opens only when two plug prongs push on it simultaneously.
Turn off the power at the main electrical
service panel and remove the outlet. Hold
the non-contact voltage detector against
each wire in the box to make sure the
power is off before removing the old outlet.
The price of tamper-resistant outlets has
dropped to about a buck apiece, now that
they're required by electrical code and manufacturers
have ramped up production. Replace
the outlets in the rooms your kids use the most
and get rid of those pesky plastic outlet plugs,
which are inconvenient to use, easily lost and a
choking hazard. The new tamper-resistant outlets
look just like regular outlets but have an
interior cover that will open only when the two
prongs of a plug are inserted simultaneously.
This prevents children from sticking something
into one of the slots and getting burned or electrocuted.
According to a 10-year
report released by the
U.S. Consumer Product
approximately 2,400 children
room treatment every
year for injuries caused
by inserting objects into
CONNECT the new wires to the new outlet: white (neutral) wire to a silver-colored terminal screw; black (hot) wire to a gold-colored terminal screw; bare wire to the green grounding screw. Make sure the cable sheath remains secured inside the box.
Replacing an outlet is simple. Start by turning
off the circuit breaker or removing the fuse
that controls the outlet at the main service
panel. Then, after checking to make sure there's
no power to the outlet, carefully unscrew the
outlet and replace it with a tamper-resistant version.
Have the necessary tools for this DIY project lined up before you start—you’ll save time and frustration.
Avoid last-minute shopping trips by having all your materials ready ahead of time. Here's a list.
Copyright © 2013 The Family Handyman. All Rights Reserved.