Why Rewire Your Outlets?

Rewiring electrical outlets in your home can provide several benefits:

Dangers of DIY Electrical Work

Before beginning, understand the risks associated with home electrical projects:

Preparing to Rewire Outlets

Follow these steps before working on any outlets:

Assess Existing Wiring

Turn Off Power

Gather Materials

Safety Gear

Rewiring an Electrical Outlet

Follow these step-by-step instructions to safely rewire an outlet:

1. Turn Off Power at Breaker

Double check that the outlet is not live using a non-contact voltage tester. Test after flipping breaker off.

2. Remove Old Outlet

Unscrew the cover plate and outlet from the electrical box and disconnect wires. Note existing wire colors and terminal screw locations.

3. Install New Electrical Box (If Needed)

Outlet boxes wear out over time. Replace damaged boxes with a new metal or plastic one matching the wall depth. Secure it with screws.

4. Feed Cable into Box

Bring the replacement NM cable into the back of the box through one of the knockouts. Leave 6 inches of extra wire at the box.

5. Connect Wires

Match wire color codes and terminal screw locations from the old outlet. Wrap clockwise around screws and tighten securely.

6. Install New Outlet

Line up the outlet holes with the electrical box screws and securely fasten into place along with the cover plate.

7. Test and Restore Power

Turn the breaker back on. Verify outlet is wired correctly using a tester and by plugging in a lamp. Then turn the breaker back off.

8. Connect Additional Outlets

Use cable clamps and anti-short bushings when running multiple outlets off the same circuit. Follow code for box fill limits.

Special Considerations

Certain situations require additional safety steps or rewiring options:

When to Call an Electrician

While basic outlets are within DIY capabilities, more complex projects or fixes involving the main service panel, heavy appliances or voltage > 250V may require a licensed electrician. When in doubt, call a professional.


Rewiring outlets is a worthwhile DIY project to enhance your home's functions and safety. With proper materials and safe procedures, you can save on electrician fees. However, use caution and seek help when needed, as electrical mistakes can be costly or deadly. Take it slow and double check everything.