Installing Electrical Outlets: Which way is up?

Install electrical outlets with the ground hole either up or down

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

By the DIY experts of The Family Handyman Magazine

Ground hole up or down?

You usually see outlets installed with the ground hole down (Photo 2). But it's no better than installing them the opposite direction (Photo 1). Electricians endlessly debate this and vigorously exalt the virtues of installing it one way or the other, but we'll tell it to you straight—it just doesn't matter. Both ways are correct. The electric code doesn't specify which direction the ground plug hole needs to face. One way isn't safer than the other—as long as the outlet is wired correctly.

It all comes down to aesthetics, so install them whatever way looks best to you. Incidentally, the ground plug is typically down in the United States, the opposite of how it's generally installed in Canada.

Similar Projects

Popular How-To Videos