How to Make a Hidden Compartment in Drywall

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Homes have all kinds of nooks and crannies where small items can be hidden, but the space between walls is the traditional place to stash stuff. For small things such as jewelry, money and important papers, few hiding places work as well as an openly visible yet fake electrical receptacle.

Things You'll Need

  • Stud finder
  • Screwdriver
  • 2-receptacle circuit box
  • Keyhole saw, rotary cutter, utility knife or other instrument to cut through drywall
  • Pencil
  • 1/2-inch wood screw
  • 2-receptacle faceplate with screw
  • Velcro
  • Contact glue
  • Locate a point in the home where it would be reasonable to have an electrical receptacle box. It should be at the same level as the other outlets in the home. A light switch would work for a hiding spot a little higher on the wall but is easier noticed as a fake, since nothing happens when the switch is moved.

  • Find a stud by running the stud finder over the wall and listening for the beep. Poke a hole through the drywall with the screwdriver just to the side of where you know the stud is.

  • Cut toward the stud until you hit the edge. This is the near edge of the opening you will soon cut.

  • Place the circuit box against the wall, covering the cut and lining the edge of the box up with the edge of the stud. Draw around the box and remove it.

  • Cut around the drawing of the circuit box. It is critical that you cut the exact space out so that when you put the cover plate on the wall it hides all cuts that might attract attention.

  • Slide the circuit box into the hole. Adjust the cut in the drywall if necessary to make it fit, however the fit should be tight so if you need to force it just a little instead of cutting that is acceptable.

  • Screw the screw through the side of the circuit box into the adjoining stud. This keeps it from slipping downward between the drywall sheaths.

  • Cut a thin strip of the Velcro and attach it to the four sides of the drywall surrounding the hole. Add matching strips of Velcro to the plastic cover plate and push the plate onto the wall-placed Velcro. This should form a strong bond that will not come off with out a strong tug, be hidden from the public.

  • Place a bit of contact glue on the screw that fits into the center of the faceplate and push it into the hole where it belongs.

Tips & Warnings

  • For added reality occasionally have a vacuum cleaner or other small appliances plugged into the receptacle when guests come over. Pull the plug out of the wall in front of the guests and remove the appliance so that no one tries to turn it on.
  • Glue a small hinge such as for a jewelry box to the inside of the faceplate and the circuit box so that you can just flip the faceplate open like a door.

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