Hook up an outlet

If an outlet is loose, or anything that's plugged into it flickers on and off, it's time to be replaced. On its back side, an outlet is rated for voltage and amperage volts and 15 amps is most common.

Choosing a new receptacle outlet

Make sure to get a replacement with the same ratings. Turn off the circuit breaker that controls the outlet. Test that the power is off by sticking both circuit tester probes in the outlet slots of each socket. No light means the power is off. Take off the cover plate. Just to be safe, test the circuit again.

How to Install a USB Wall Outlet {Receptacle Outlet}

This time, touch the probe to the screw terminals on both sides where the wires are attached. Start with the top set of screws, and then test the bottom set. No light means no power, so the outlet is safe to work on. Next, unscrew the outlet and pull it out of the wall box by the mounting tabs. The wires should unfold and stretch out so you can access them. A grounded outlet has a round hole on the face in addition to the two slots. If there are three holes in the outlet face, there should be three wires attached to the outlet.

The black hot and white neutral wires carry the current, and the copper wire is the ground. Note that the outlet's screw terminals are certain colors. The white wire goes on the silver screw. The bare copper or green wire goes on the green screw. And the black wire gets attached to the brass screw. If the terminals aren't easy to identify by color, the ground terminal may be marked with a "GR. And the black wire always goes to the short slot side.

Gently pull the receptacle out of the wall. Grab the Phillips screwdriver and begin disconnecting the five wires 2 black, 2 white, 1 copper by unscrewing the screws. We just happened to start with the black wires. Notice how the wires have colored insulation? The two black wires are the hot wires, which provide VAC current sources. The two white wires are the neutral wires, which provide the return paths for the current provided by the hot wires.

The copper wire without insulation is the ground wire, which is a safety feature in case the hot or neutral wires come in contact with metal parts. Save the old receptacle and wall plate. We put everything in a plastic zip-loc bag. Grab your USB receptacle and start connecting the wires.

How to Wire a Split Receptacle

Also, notice how the screws are different colors. If you purchase a different outlet yours may not be laid out or labeled like this one. Brad always connects the ground wire first because he thinks it makes connecting the other wires easier. In this case, the ground wire was connected with the green screw. Connect the white wires by inserting them and then tightening with a screwdriver. In this case, the white wires were connected with the silver screw. Connect the black wires by inserting them and then tightening with a screwdriver.

In this case, the black wires were connected with the black screw. Now, all of the wires should be connected to the receptacle. Carefully put the wires and receptacle into the wall box. Attach the receptacle to the wall box with the two screws top and bottom.

Attach the USB outlet wall plate with a flat head screwdriver. Turn the power back on to the outlet.

DETAILED DIY: Wiring a 220v outlet step by step from breaker to outlet

Plug in a USB cord or two and test it out. When you plug an electronic device into the USB cord the green LED light on the outlet will turn on, well at least with this particular outlet. Now Brad is able to charge his iPhone, iPad, and plug the lamp into the wall. Did you geek out like me when you realized these outlets existed? Where would you install a USB wall outlet in your house? Did you like this post? Check out my post on how to install new electrical outlets! Complete this DIY project at your own risk. I am so doing this in my kitchen—eventually.

How to Hook Up an RV Power Outlet

It makes so much sense…maybe in the entry area too as a charging station. Thank you for sharing! This is so great! We are so technology reliant here…2 iPads, 2 iPhones and never enough charges! We put the two and two outlet in the kitchen over the weekend. I love it, or I would if we could keep up with enough cords to charge our phones! Soon, I will love it!! That is handy, is it not. I think we should be reaching a point in our technological world where USB outlets should come as standard as regular outlets.

Can I ask why did you not wrap the outlet with electrical tape before screwing it back into the wall? This is what I found from a master electrician: Wrapping wirenuts is completely unnecessary, except in cases where the connection needs to be further protected from water or chemical infiltration in such cases, special tapes and sealers are used — not standard electrical tape.

Electricians that claim that the tape helps to holds the wirenut in place do not know how wirenuts actually work and are just regurgitating false information taught to them by another misinformed electrician. The person suggesting that is probably implying that you were wrap the wire connections in electrical tape to prevent the wires from coming out of the wire nuts, which could be a fire hazard if any strands of the hot wire touch strands of the neutral or ground wire. Every time we go into Home Depot Kevin runs up to these the USB outlets and points out how awesome they are and how much we need them.

I had no idea those existed! We will definitely be utilizing those in our house soon. It could be a very nice thing to install one in the room you are using AT your in laws. A small unannounced and unheralded Thank You for the stay. My hubby put one in our kitchen when we remodeled. Yes, I geek out about little things like this, too. Thanks so much for the how-to, Chelsea! Have a great week! What a great idea, and great tutorial!

Buying and Installing Electrical Outlets

I can see a couple of these making their way into home in the near future. Nate has been debating one of these but we have approximately phone chargers so not quite top priority. But still nerdy cool! We recently bought a surge protector that came with a bonus outlet plug type thing — extends a normal wall plug into 6 normal plugs and 2 USB ports — and we love it! We always have stuff plugged in charging there, so I would definitely do these around the house! Gallon sized zip lock bag in a central location. I have no idea.


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The outlet I link to states: