How to Remove a Plastic Electrical Box

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Electrical boxes house light switches, outlets and the wiring that powers them. These boxes are easy to install -- and just as easy to remove if you wish to eliminate the outlet or switch inside.


Most plastic electrical boxes are held in place with nails. When removing these boxes, you will discover that it is much easier to cut the nails, rather than open up the wall and pry them out.

Things You'll Need

  • Screwdriver
  • Hacksaw
  • Before starting this task, make absolutely sure the electricity is turned off in the room with the electrical box. Disconnect the specific circuits or fuses that service the room.

    Use a screwdriver to remove the screw holding the face plate over the light switch or outlet. Take the face plate off the wall. Remove the screws holding the light switch or outlet to the plastic electrical box. Pull out the box.

  • Use a hacksaw to cut through the nails holding the electrical box to the stud. There will be two nails -- one near the top of the box and one near the bottom. Take care that you are not cutting through any hidden wiring.

  • Loosen the screws on the side of the outlet or light switch that hold the electrical wires in place. Remove the wire from the outlet or switch and untangle it, if necessary.

  • Push the box down into the wall so that the wiring is pulled out. Reach into the hole and pull the plastic electrical box up and out.

Tips & Warnings

  • If there are electric wires coming from both the top and bottom of the box, you will need to cut open the drywall a little to provide more working room.
  • Once again, before beginning this project, make sure all power to the room is turned off. Use a circuit-tester to make sure.

References

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