HOW TO WIRE A RECEPTACLE / OUTLET

When working with electricity always:

  • Turn off the power.
  • Test the wires to ensure the power is off.
  • Lock out the panel box, so no one can accidentally turn the power back on while you are working.
    There are basically two steps for wiring a receptacle / outlet
  1. Wire the receptacle
  2. Ground the receptacle

NOTE: -Aluminum Wires- If you are using aluminum wires in this situation, it is very important that you use fixtures and/or wire connectors or wire nuts that are UL (Underwriters Laboratories) approved for use with aluminum and copper wires. 

1) Wire the receptacle

If replacing an existing receptacle, take out the old receptacle. You may need to note how the old receptacle is wired or make a diagram. NOTE:  The old receptacle could have been wired wrong in the first place so you can't totally rely on this.

Connect the black hot wire to a brass screw terminal, and the white neutral wire to a silver screw terminal. Tighten the screws so that the loop follows the same direction as the tightening of the screw.

2)  Ground the receptacle

Attach the ground wire (bare copper wire or green wire) to the ground screw of the new receptacle. If more than one ground wire is in the box, twist them together along with a pigtail with a wire connector (wire nut) or a crimped connector. Next, attach the pigtail ground wire to the ground screw on the receptacle. If you are using a metal outlet box, make sure a pigtail ground wire is connected to the ground screw on the box.

NOTE:  Before putting the cover plate on the receptacle, make sure the receptacle is aligned straight vertically before you tighten it down (to be visually pleasing). Also, do not over tighten the screws for the cover plate, as it may crack. ​

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