How To Make Outlet Not Controlled By Switch
Homeowners in the Providence County, Rhode Island area are no strangers to the challenges that come with maintaining and updating their homes. Whether it’s dealing with harsh winters, humid summers, or unpredictable weather, homeowners in the 02908 zip code of Elmhurst know the importance of having a reliable and efficient electrical system. That’s why B&K Electric, a family-owned and operated electrical business based in Warwick, RI, has been proudly serving the residents of Cranston, Warwick, and all of Rhode Island for over seventeen years.
As licensed electricians, our team at B&K Electric has seen it all when it comes to electrical issues in homes and businesses. One common request we receive from homeowners is to make an outlet not controlled by a switch. Many people are unaware that it is possible to change the functionality of an outlet, and are left frustrated when they can’t use their outlet without the switch being turned on. Don’t worry, though – in this article, we’ll walk you through the steps on how to make an outlet not controlled by a switch in your home.
Understanding How Outlets are Controlled by Switches
Before we dive into the steps on how to make an outlet not controlled by a switch, it’s important to understand how outlets and switches work together. In a typical household, outlets are usually wired to a series of switches. These switches control the flow of electricity to the outlet, allowing you to turn it on or off at your convenience.
It’s important to note that not all outlets in your home are controlled by switches. Some outlets may be wired to constantly receive electricity, while others are connected to a switch for added convenience. Outlets controlled by switches are often located in areas such as living rooms, bedrooms, or hallways.
Reasons to Make an Outlet Not Controlled by Switch
There are a few reasons why a homeowner may want to make an outlet not controlled by a switch. One common reason is to have a dedicated outlet for a specific appliance or electronic device. For example, you may want to have an outlet that is always receiving electricity for a TV or computer, instead of having to remember to turn on the switch every time you want to use it.
Another reason may be related to safety concerns. If you have small children or pets in the home, having outlets constantly receiving electricity may be a more secure option to avoid accidents.
Lastly, some homeowners may simply prefer the convenience of having an outlet that is always on, without having to worry about the switch being flipped.
Steps to Make an Outlet Not Controlled by Switch
Now that you understand the reasons behind wanting to make an outlet not controlled by a switch, let’s go through the steps on how to make this change in your home.
Step 1: Turn Off Power to the Outlet
Safety always comes first when it comes to dealing with electricity. Before you begin, make sure to turn off the power to the outlet you want to change. You can do this by turning off the circuit breaker that controls the outlet.
Step 2: Determine the Wiring of Your Outlet
It’s important to understand the wiring of your outlet before making any changes. You can determine the wiring by unscrewing the outlet cover and carefully examining the wires. If there are only two wires (a black wire and a white wire) connected to the outlet, then the outlet is operating on what is known as a switch loop. This is the type of outlet that you will be able to change to not be controlled by a switch.
Step 3: Install a Jumper Wire
To make an outlet not controlled by a switch, you will need to install a jumper wire. A jumper wire is simply a short piece of wire that connects two points in an electrical circuit. In this case, you will need to connect the two wires in the outlet.
Step 4: Disconnect the Switch Loop and Connect the Jumper Wire
Using a pair of pliers, you will need to disconnect the switch loop by removing the black wire from the outlet. Then, take your jumper wire and connect one end to the screw where the black wire was previously attached. On the other end of the jumper wire, connect it to the black wire that is leading to the circuit breaker.
Step 5: Test the Outlet
Once the jumper wire is securely connected, it’s time to test the outlet. Turn the power back on and try plugging in a device to see if it works without the switch being turned on. If everything is working properly, you have successfully made an outlet not controlled by a switch.
Step 6: Secure and Cover the Outlet
After making sure that the outlet is working as intended, you can now secure the outlet cover and turn the power back off at the circuit breaker. It’s important to cover the outlet as it protects the wires and the device being plugged in.
In summary, making an outlet not controlled by a switch is a relatively simple process that can save you time and provide added safety in your home. However, it’s important to remember to always turn off the power and take the necessary precautions when working with electricity. If at any point you feel unsure or uncomfortable, it’s best to call a licensed electrician like B&K Electric to handle the job.