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Wiring Outlets

Learn how to wire outlets, test GFCI circuits, troubleshoot dead outlets with tips to work safely.

  1. Replacing Electrical Outlet

    Is there a way to replace a two-slot outlet with a three-slot outlet without running a new ground wire halfway through the house?

Other Projects for DIYers from The Family Handyman:

  1. How to Install a Tamper-Resistant Outlet


    Replace standard electrical outlets with tamper-resistant outlets for a safer home. They're inexpensive and easy to install.

  2. Add an Electrical Outlet


    Eliminate those ugly and often dangerous extension cords. You can add a new outlet quickly and easily without tearing open a wall, if you already have an outlet in the other side of the wall. No extra holes. No messy patching and repainting.  The procedure we show here allowed us to center our TV ...

  3. Tighten a Loose Outlet


    Do you have outlets with cracked cover plates? The outlet box was probably set too deep, leaving the outlet unsupported. Here's a quick fix that doesn't require a trip to the hardware store.

  4. How to Add an Outdoor Outlet


    Add an outdoor electrical outlet to get power to where you need it, especially for holiday lights. Do it safely and easily with this simple through-the-wall technique.

  5. Installing Electrical Outlets: Which way is up?


    Install outlets (receptacles) with the ground hole either up or down. Both are correct. But be consistent.

  6. Testing GFCI Outlets


    All GFCI outlets have one little-known flaw: their circuitry eventually wears out, usually after about 10 years, at which point they no longer function properly. Here's the whole story.

  7. Repair Electrical Outlets: Fix Loose Outlets


    Electrical switches and outlets that move around because the box is too recessed can be a safety problem. Outlet shims offer a quick and inexpensive solution.

  8. Adding a Receptacle


    Switch boxes can sometimes be used as a power source for a new outlet, but only if the box is large enough and has neutral and ground wires running through it. Here's how to figure it out.

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