HOW TO REPLACE AN ELECTRICAL SOCKET – Electrical sockets come in a variety of styles, for example chrome or brass, and colours. You can now fit electrical sockets to better fit the decor in your rooms. In this guide we’ll show you how to replace the existing electrical socket for a new one. Remember that you are dealing with wiring and that electricity is extremely dangerous so if you have any doubts call in a qualified electrician to do the job.
NOTE: This guide is intended for the UK ONLY. Remember to TURN OFF the Mains Power before you begin working on your electrical system.
Before you undertake any electrical work in the home you must ALWAYS turn the power off from the main electrical box. Once you have turned it off, be sure to let everyone in the house know that you are working on the electrics and as a further precaution place a Post It note on the cover to let others know not to touch the power.
You can test to see if the power is off by plugging in an appliance, such as a hair dryer and turn it on. If it doesn’t come on, then you know the power is off.
Using an electrical screwdriver, remove the screws on the face plate of the socket. It’s a good idea to keep these as the new screws may not be long enough to reach the socket casing in the wall.
Gently pull the socket casing away from the wall to expose the backside of the socket plate and the wiring.
Note carefully the ‘EARTH’ cable. If you have a plastic socket case in the wall then the ‘EARTH’ cable will only be attached to the socket plate. However, if you have a metal case then the ‘EARTH’ cable will be attached to the socket plate and metal box. The ‘EARTH’ cable is coloured GREEN and YELLOW.
Take a pen and paper and note where each wire goes on each terminal.
UK Wiring Colours – GREEN/YELLOW = Earth, BROWN = Live and BLUE = Neutral. IMPORTANT – If you live in an older house then the colours may be different, for example RED = Live, BLACK = Neutral and GREEN = Earth.
Take your new socket plate and turn this over. You should see that each terminal is clearly marked – E or Earth Symbol = Earth – L = Live – N = Neutral.
Carefully following the instructions that came with the new socket, connect each wire into the correct terminal. Make sure that no copper wire is visible when connected to the terminal. If the exposed copper wiring is too long then cut off, using wire cutters, until the copper wire fits in the terminal with no copper wire showing.
Carefully place the new socket plate to the wall and use the old screws to secure it to the wall if the new screws do not fit.
Turn your power back on at the mains and test using an appliance, such as a hair dryer.
Acknowledgements: Video – B&Q