Family Handyman Approved: Wago Lever Nuts
Wary of cheap, twist-on wire nuts? Then try these from Wago.
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I don’t trust twist-on wire nuts. Sure, the wiring in my walls is replete with those inexpensive twist-on connectors. But that doesn’t mean I need to use traditional wire nuts for future electrical projects and wiring add-ons like new ceiling fans and light fixtures. The wire nuts that often come with those projects seem particularly weak.
With Wago lever nuts, I have a better option. After I discovered these connectors, I tossed my color-coded traditional wire nut connectors. I’ll use only these nuts from now on.
What Are Wago Lever Nuts?
With a Wago lever nut, you flip open an orange lever, insert a stripped wire end and close the lever. Do that for the two or three wires you’re joining and you’re done. Closing the lever connects the wires. Give each wire a little tug to be sure it’s locked in.
These lever nuts work with solid and stranded wire, and they’re available for different wire gauges and in two-, three- and five-wire configurations.
Wago lever nuts are made in Germany by a large manufacturing company that makes much larger electrical equipment, too. The company has vast experience in electrical connection solutions, and the stereotypical German quality ethic is evident in the feel of these tiny connectors.
How We Tested Them
I recently added several surface-mounted electrical outlets in my garage, and the small outlet boxes made regular wire nuts difficult to use for all the pigtailing I needed to do.
On one of many trips to the hardware store during this project, I bought a box of Wago lever nuts — three-wire model 221. I needed a method to fit pigtail connections in small boxes that came with the surface-mount kit I used. I was adding seven new boxes and connections in my garage.
It takes some force to open each lever, and they close with a noticeable snap; these are not just push-connect fittings. The lever closure does the work and you can feel it.
You can see the wires as you insert them into the mostly clear plastic connector. This helps you make sure you’re inserting them all the way. A small gauge on the side of the device helps you strip the right amount of insulation from each wire.
It was easy to fit three Wago 221s — one each for the neutral, hot and ground wires — in my small outlet boxes. For extra security, I wrapped each lever nut in color-coordinated electrical tape so I can see what’s what if I open any outlet box. That’s not necessary, but it was easy and felt right.
Where to Buy Wago Lever Nuts
At $18 for a 50-count box, Wago lever nuts are more expensive than regular twist-on wire nuts. And they’re worth it. That’s why they’re Family Handyman Approved. Wago lever nuts are available at hardware stores and home centers.
Glenn Hansen, Deputy Editor, is magazine editor and writer by trade, Glenn gained experience in home repair when he bought his first old home while working side jobs in construction to supplement his starving-writer salary. He has built several furniture projects from the pages of Family Handyman magazine and worked through countless fix-it-up projects at home to save a few bucks.