new receptacles are crooked!!

hairmetal4everNovember 12, 2009

I installed new GFCI receptacles in my kitchen as well as one "standard" outlet. While they work just fine and are mechanically correct, I can't get them to "line up" in the box, they are all tilted to one side or the other.

I even unscrewed them and tried again - it almost feels that, especially for the GFCI, that they take up so much room in the box that they don't quite fit...but even the standard ones are crooked.

Is there a "trick" to doing this?

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davidandkasie

i take it you replaced old ones, correct? if so were they straight? if they were then you are simply not getting them adjusted correctly. both the top and bottom screw holes are slotted to allow for adjustment, you just need to get them straight.

    Bookmark   November 12, 2009 at 10:57AM
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macv

The box may not be sized for the number and sizes of the wires in it so it can be difficult to get everything to fit.

    Bookmark   November 12, 2009 at 12:09PM
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hairmetal4ever

1. No matter how tight I make the screws, they slide into a crooked position. Yes I replaced old ones that were not crooked.

2. Haven't added any wires...but it's possible the receptable itself is too big.

    Bookmark   November 12, 2009 at 3:19PM
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brickeyee

"1. No matter how tight I make the screws, they slide into a crooked position. Yes I replaced old ones that were not crooked."

#12 wire and a GFCI receptacle in a shallow box can be a real PITA.

Turn off the circuit, pull the GFCI out, and make sure there are some bends in the wires going to the device.

It may take you a few tries to pack the wires so that the device will stay aligned, but it can be done.

    Bookmark   November 12, 2009 at 5:08PM
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maryland_irisman

I agree, some take a little work but you can do it. I think the trick would be to add the bends as Brickeyee mentions. Sometimes, the tension from the wire pulls from one side or the other. If that's the case, manually turn the receptacle until it appears straight, make sure the wire is looped so it will fold into the box as you push the receptacle in and tighten it.

    Bookmark   November 12, 2009 at 6:01PM
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mrfixit_eh

I've had some receptacles that just seemed to pull themselves crooked when I tightened up the screws. I found that it helped to hold the receptacle in correct alignment with a pair of needlenose pliers while I tightened the screws. The pliers give a little more resistance to the receptacle torquing than you can provide with just your hand holding the receptacle.

Steve

    Bookmark   November 17, 2009 at 3:48PM
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