Trying To Add An Outlet....

Reply

  #1  
Old 11-10-10, 09:02 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Colorado
Posts: 144
Trying To Add An Outlet....

I've done some very simple stuff; like adding a light switch - and managed alright....but now I'm trying to add a new outlet to an existing room that has only one outlet.

So far, every outlet I've seen either had two pairs of wires going into it or one pair (each pair has 1 black/1 white). But this outlet had three pairs! I was expecting just one wire - and then I'd put my new wire into it, run it to the new outlet.

Is this normal? My new outlets don't seem to have room for more than 2 pairs; but the old outlet seems to have room for 4 pairs. It have four holes on each side - one says 'white' - can I just stick my new wire into the empty holes?

Thanks a bunch.
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 11-10-10, 10:51 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,041
If this is side wired with screws you turn to tighten a pressure plate on the wires, yes. If you mean that just have a hole in back and a spring to hold the wire, maybe, but I wouldn't recommend it. Instead attach pigtails to each group of wires and the pigtails to the receptacle.

In all cases all grounds must connected together, pigtailed to the receptacle and if the box is metal to the box with a second pigtail.
 
  #3  
Old 11-11-10, 04:49 AM
pcboss's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Maryland
Posts: 14,587
You may not have enough cubic inch capacity left to add another cable. What size is the wire used and how big is the box? Plastic or metal?
 
  #4  
Old 11-11-10, 09:37 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Colorado
Posts: 144
Thanks for the responses....I think I understand the pig-tail thing; I just need to figure out how I'm going to get a new wire back there without completely destroying the dry-wall.

The three wires that are already in the box all enter from the top - I can't tell from looking what size they are, other than to say they all look the same. I'm guessing it's 12-2 romex? I'm not sure if that's what you'd call it.

The box itself is metal and it seems fairly crowded. Would it be a bad idea to try and rip the box out and put in a 2-wide box?
 
  #5  
Old 11-11-10, 09:50 AM
Member
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: orange county
Posts: 285
I always carry a couple of high end (about three bucks maybe) receptacles with pressure plates to secure the wires, for this kind of scenario. I was personally never crazy about pig-tailing unless I had to. Hot spots can develop under poorly installed wire nuts if you don't know how to make a "nice twist". Just my opinion.
 
  #6  
Old 11-11-10, 10:00 AM
ray2047's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,041
The box itself is metal and it seems fairly crowded. Would it be a bad idea to try and rip the box out and put in a 2-wide box?
Not rip out but remove gently. Often the box is nailed in. Using a Sawzall or a hack saw blade you can cut through the nails between the box and stud. Replace with a single gang deep old work box. If your careful there should be no need for Sheetrock repair.
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes