Electricity: Installing a Floor Outlet


Not all lamps or appliances are destined to be wallflowers, especially when you’re furnishing a large space. The solution is a strategically placed floor outlet. Plan the project with wire routing problems in mind. Working over an unfinished basement offers the simplest solution; finished ceilings present greater challenges.

Most local codes require floor outlets to be part of an approved assembly consisting of a special box, gasket seal, special receptacle and strong cover plate with a moisture-proof cover. Locate the floor box where you can tie into a nearby circuit.

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1. Position outlet so it falls between joists. Drill through wood floor with long bit or through carpeted floor with straightened clothes hanger wire with angled tip to avoid carpet snags. Locate wire below.

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2. Outline box on floor. Cut out hole using a jigsaw or keyhole saw. For carpeted floor, cut away carpet and pad, drill through corners and cut out hole from underneath. continued...

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Attach cable clamp to cable, then snap clamp into box. Secure cable to joist within 12 in. (30 cm) of box with a cable staple....

3. Attach cable clamp to cable, then snap clamp into box. Secure cable to joist within 12 in. (30 cm) of box with a cable staple.

4. Fasten box to floor and attach wires to receptacle. Connect ground wire to ground screw in box, then to receptacle. Position receptacle in box and secure it.

5. With power off, tie new outlet to existing circuit in box with constant (not switch-operated) hot feed. Find incoming hot wire and connect new wires with wire connectors.

Last modified: Saturday, 2007-11-03 1:15 PST