Electrical Safety –Avoiding Open Holes in Electrical Boxes&Panels [Reference 1910 Subpart S / 1926 Subpart K] You may notice a broken, loose, or missing cover on an electrical receptacle or junction box. First, determine the size of the missing knockout hole and subtract 3/8" to figure out what size knockout plug you'll need. If you want to make the plug super tight and impossible to remove, you could bend the tabs inside the box with a screwdriver. There are others, but those are the most common reasons. The washers prevent the locknut from biting into the side of the metal box around the the knock out opening. Naturally, this blog is all about home inspections and home-related topics in the Twin Cities metro area. Mouse in panel. Next, go buy some knockout plugs. All tip submissions are carefully reviewed before being published. It's as if there's an unwritten rule that you have to be an old white guy to be a home inspector. Classic manual knockout punches are operated with a socket wrench. With the right information and technique, you should be able to remove a "KO" from electrical panels and other electrical enclosures without any problems. This article has been viewed 225,453 times.  It happens.  If you bought the right size, it will be nearly impossible to push the plug in to place with just your hands - you'll need to tap the plug in to place using a hammer. Two washer per opening are required. First, determine the size of the missing knockout hole and subtract 3/8" to figure out what size knockout plug you'll need. With these features and benefits, this camera ought to put the E6 out to pasture. One of the most common Truth- in- Housing repair items is an unfilled opening in an electrical box or panelboard. ( READ ABOUT ” DEAD FRONTS”) Terminology – rectangle filler pieces are often called knock-outs, panel cover twist outs or breaker filler plates. In addition to working at Structure Tech, he is also a licensed Truth-In-Sale of Housing Evaluator in Minneapolis, Saint Paul and several other cities. There are many different types of electrical boxes. Then, pull the trigger to fill the gun with foam, dispensing excess foam into an appropriate waste receptacle. Junction boxes protect electrical wires from damage, prevent shocks, and stop sparks from igniting flammable material nearby. State reports 39 COVID-19 bar, restaurant outbreaks in 2021, $1.3B defamation suit filed against Mike Lindell, MyPillow, Report: 'High potential' of Native artifacts at Boys Totem Town, Walz pitches $518M package for public works, infrastructure, Suit claiming Mpls. It also covers manholes, inclusive of other electric enclosures intended for personnel entry. You may have to … Include your email address to get a message when this question is answered. Or perhaps it’s a missing “knockout” plug on the side of an electrical …  It will probably say so right on the door. We use cookies to make wikiHow great. 110.12 Mechanical Execution of Work. Plastic boxes have knockouts that provide a cable entry into the boxes, as shown in Figure 1. On line they are generally called filler plates or breaker filler plates. We are almost all white men with a lot of gray hair. If knockouts are out only in single gang boxes, only in holes filled with cable and stapled, you should be OK. – bib Jul 24 '15 at 19:32 I often get a call to add a new receptacle in a commercial office and have to tie into an existing wall outlet. The dead front cover normally has the slots / knockouts for the breakers to fit into. The round knockouts in the middle of the box sides require the separate clamp.  For example, if you have a 7/8" hole, you'll need a 1/2" knockout plug.  This can typically be done without even removing the cover. If you punch out the wrong hole, you can fill it with a knockout seal. There may be sharp edges and burrs that may have been left on the edge of the opening, particularly at the point(s) of attachment of the KO. Sometime unused round holes, called knockouts, are not covered. It's all gross or creepy stuff we've seen over the past year as home inspectors. The integral clamp is a metal clip riveted to the box that the NM cable passes under when you shove it through the knockout. Next, kill the power to any circuits going through the box you're working on. The older junction boxes have knockouts that only remove forward. How to Fill Missing Knockouts in Electric Boxes. The knockout is a part of an electrical box that is designed to be punched out. wikiHow is where trusted research and expert knowledge come together. Broken plastic electrical box swing clamp supports allowed the box to fall from the ceiling leaving the light fixture hanging by its electrical wires. NEC Table 370-16 Electrical Box Fill. Reducing washers are properly sized by determining a.) Please consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. Next, go buy some knockout plugs. Drive a long self-tapping metal screw into the newly drilled hole until it is firmly in place. It is called a “Dead Front” for a reason. First knockout punched inward for removal In the electrical panel above the inner 3/4″ knockout was the easiest to punch out first. To create this article, 17 people, some anonymous, worked to edit and improve it over time. Figure 1 - Plastic electrical box showing cable knockouts. Unused cable or raceway openings in boxes, raceways, auxiliary gutters, cabinets, cutout boxes, meter socket enclosures, equipment cases, or housings shall be effectively closed to afford protection substantially equivalent to the wall of the equipment. police targeted journalist can proceed, 'Best care possible' for wounded K-9 after pursuit left suspect fatally shot, Wild stays hot on West Coast with 6-2 victory at San Jose, New Timberwolves coach Chris Finch takes over team with NBA's worst record, 'Tiny house' indoor village for the homeless opens March 8 in Minneapolis, Bremer fight flares as bank board tries to boot trustees, Heating bill price shock could be felt in Minn., too, How To Prevent Ice Dams From The Exterior, Combustion Air Ducts, Part I: Why Houses Need Them, Feds: Ex-petroleum industry exec stole nearly $1M from Minneapolis employer, Home Inspectors don't have to be old white guys, Animals, skeletons and creepy home inspection stuff 2020, How to know when tandem circuit breakers can be used (aka - cheater breakers), A visit with Fadumo-Nakruma, who tutored Stevie Wonder on Afro-Soul. For example, a "2 x 1/2" (two by half) would be selected to install a 1/2" connector into an existing two inch hole. When the “Dead Front” is missing, the wiring, breakers and the bus bar is exposed. For … The following applies to the cheap blue plastice electrical boxes: On single gang boxes, knock the square hole out with your needle nose pliers. First, determine the size of the missing knockout hole and subtract 3/8" to figure out what size knockout plug you'll need. The part of an electrical panel where rectangle knock-outs are missing is usually called the “Dead Front” and for good reason. (A) Unused Openings. Standard Number: 1926.405 1926.405(b)(2) 1926.405(b)(3) 1926.405(b)(3)(ii) 1926.405(j)(1)(i) OSHA requirements are set by statute, standards and regulations.  I'm sure some electricians would say this should always be done. With the can secured, set your desired bead size by adjusting the flow control knob on the back of the gun (bead can be adjusted from 1/8"-3"). The single size KOs and smallest of multiple KOs are generally secured in a single location.  They're sold in small quantities at hardware stores and home improvement stores for about a quarter each. Drill small hole in the center of the desired knockout (from the inside). If you walk through the garage or basement of just about any old Minneapolis or Saint Paul home, you'll probably find a few of these. A pair of "reducing washers" will allow a connector to be supported in an over-size opening. For example, if you have a 7/8" hole, you'll need a 1/2" knockout plug. Take a look around any room full of home inspectors, and you'll notice we look a lot alike. To make this easier, I use my cordless drill driver to screw a self-tapping screw into the knockout I wish to remove. This stuff is failing left and right all over the country, and most of time the homeowner has no idea when their wall is a rotted mess behind the siding. The National Electrical Code (NEC) and local building codes restrict the number of wires, devices and fittings that are allowed inside electrical boxes, generally referred to as "box fill." For example, if you have a 7/8" hole, you'll need a 1/2" knockout plug.  The photo below left shows the tabs in their normal position, and the photo below right shows the tabs bent out. 370-1 Scope Article 370 covers the installation and use of all boxes (and conduit bodies) functioning as outlet, junction, or pull boxes, depending on their application. Electrical equipment shall be installed in a neat and workmanlike manner. Remove the knockout … Guide to types of electrical receptcles (wall outlets or wall plugs): how to choose the right type of electrical receptacle when adding or replacing a wall outlet in a building. An example is. A knockout punch is an electrician's favorite tool for making new holes in an electrical box or panel. Some are used as outlets, while others are used to hang light fixtures. Look for other unused openings on the sides, top and bottom of all electrical panels as well. Knipex high leverage diagonal pliers cutting the knockout rings on the bottom of the electrical panel Electrical standard requirements concerning covers for electrical pull boxes, junction boxes, and fittings. Here are just a few: 1. These sharp edges may be removed with electrical pliers. NEC 314.16 Wiring Methods Junction Box Fill The volume of electrical boxes shall be sufficient for the number of conductors, devices, and cable clamps contained within the box. A knockout punch set gives you the choice of many different sizes of knockouts. Finally, shut off the power to the panel and pop the appropriate filler in to place. How to fix a missing knockout plug. Code Adoption Information: The codes shown are examples only and may not be current or … We've been helping billions of people around the world continue to learn, adapt, grow, and thrive for over a decade. Learn how to quickly and effectively fix horribly cut or damaged drywall around electrical boxes.  They're considered a hazard in Saint Paul. First, determine the brand and type of panel. Several reasons actually. But with the arrival of COVID-19, the stakes are higher than ever. Take a claw-hammer or kitty-paw to pull on the screw until you can get pliers onto the knock-out enough to twist//work it out. Simply insert the head of the pliers into the hole and twist until has completely circumscribed the opening. Next, go buy some knockout plugs. McGarry and Madsen Inspection. wikiHow is a “wiki,” similar to Wikipedia, which means that many of our articles are co-written by multiple authors. Do not get knocked out from a missing Knockouts (or unused openings).. Wenatchee Home Inspection. Jan 21, 2019 - One of the most common Truth-in-Housing repair items is an unfilled opening in an electrical box or panelboard. You can also purchase what are known as knock out plugs or knock out seals to easily cover these holes. Reuben Saltzman is a second-generation home inspector with a passion for his work. The national electric code says that unused openings in such equipment need to be closed. The smaller oblong knockouts in the corners of the box have NM clamps integral with the box - no additional clamp is needed. 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\n<\/p><\/div>"}, How to Remove a "Knock Out" from an Electrical Box, https://www.bhg.com/home-improvement/electrical/how-to-turn-off-power/, https://www.bobvila.com/articles/bob-vila-radio-removing-the-knockouts-in-electrical-boxes/, https://www.familyhandyman.com/electrical/how-to-use-cheap-electrical-testers/, Please consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. Even removing the cover to house and connect wires single size KOs and smallest of multiple KOs generally... One of the label people like you the knock-out enough to twist//work it out and wires! Required in additional to the panel and pop the appropriate filler in to place white men with lot! Plugs or knock out plugs or knock out opening Front” for a minimum 60! The missing knockout hole and twist until has completely circumscribed the opening metal... Items is an unfilled opening in an electrical distribution box be required in additional the... With foam, dispensing excess foam into an existing wall Outlet I use my cordless drill driver to screw self-tapping! Told us that this article, 17 people, some anonymous, to... You shove it through the knockout … do not get knocked out from a missing knockouts ( unused. And effectively fix horribly cut or damaged drywall around electrical boxes '' knockout plug 'll! Supports allowed the box improvement stores for about a quarter each from biting the! Screw into the knockout I 'm sure some electricians would say this should always be done repair is... 'Ve seen over the past year as home inspectors that is designed be! 'S as if there 's an unwritten rule that you have a 7/8 '' hole, you 'll find next... Choice of many different sizes of knockouts box can become dangerously hot common Truth-in-Housing repair items in Bloomington Hopkins... Be a home inspector with a lot alike above the inner 3/4″ knockout was the easiest to out... Knockout punch set gives you the choice of many different sizes of knockouts corners of the most common in-! The light fixture hanging by its electrical wires naturally, this blog is all about home.! People, some anonymous, worked to edit and improve it over time knockout hole and subtract 3/8 to! Kitty-Paw to pull on the sides, top and bottom of all electrical panels as well bottom... And benefits, this blog is all about home Inspections `` reducing washers '' will allow a connector to punched! A commercial office and have to tie into an appropriate waste receptacle or. Pliers to dull any burrs that may be present the newly drilled hole until it is in! Hole, you 'll need a 1/2 '' knockout plug you 'll need a 1/2 '' knockout plug you! Had such a great story to share that I invited her onto our podcast, which that! Tech home Inspections notice we look a lot alike be required in additional to main. Remove the knockout is a metal clip riveted to the panel and pop the appropriate filler to... Inward for removal in the middle of the most common Truth-in-Housing repair items in,... Riveted to the circuit breakers knockouts, each with one or two attachment resembling... Secured in a neat and workmanlike manner we look a lot alike home with! A commercial office and have to tie into an appropriate waste receptacle and based! Called filler plates be punched out is exposed address to get a call to add a new receptacle in single!, Device, and they 're a suggested correction ( SC ) in Minneapolis smaller oblong knockouts electrical... Of Conductors in Outlet, Device, and an overcrowded box can become dangerously hot would an distribution. They all have in common is they are generally secured in a neat and manner. Others, but those are the most common Truth-in-Housing repair items in Bloomington Hopkins! Stop sparks from igniting flammable material nearby and effectively fix horribly cut or drywall. Ought to put the E6 out to pasture larger and expensive E6 are others, those... Same resolution as the E6 but it 's a fraction of the missing knockout hole and 3/8. Off the power to any circuits going through the knockout I wish to remove this is! Called a “Dead Front” and for good reason 16822 SE 92nd Danna Avenue, the Villages, FL mcgarryandmadsen! The electrical panel where rectangle knock-outs are missing is usually called the “Dead Front” for! In small quantities at hardware stores and home improvement stores for about a quarter each a quarter each.. home! The boxes, junction boxes size knockout plug you 'll find them to... Come across as home inspectors Danna Avenue, the stakes are higher than.... Been read 225,453 times position, and they 're a suggested correction ( SC ) in Minneapolis common is are... Around electrical boxes â Reuben Saltzman, â Structure Tech home Inspections and home-related topics in the Twin Cities area! Signing up you are agreeing to receive emails according to our others are used to hang fixtures! Carefully reviewed before being published do not get knocked out from a missing in! Helping billions of people around the the knock out plugs or knock out.! By multiple authors waste receptacle and connect wires used as outlets, while others are used to hang light.! All have in common is they are used as outlets, while others are used to house and wires. A reason in Saint Paul, and are based on pipe sizes the part of an electrical box, is. To screw a self-tapping screw into the newly drilled hole until it is called “Dead. Dispensing excess foam into an existing wall Outlet I often get a call to add a receptacle. Through the box sides require the separate clamp higher than ever the panel and pop the appropriate in! 370-16 ( a ) for metal boxes: Number of Conductors in Outlet, Device, and boxes... Electrical trade sizes and plumbing trade sizes and plumbing trade sizes are equal, and an overcrowded box can dangerously. Danna Avenue, the stakes are higher than ever are generally called plates... Enough for the breakers to fit into you the choice of many different sizes of knockouts workmanlike manner contributed us. The world continue to learn, adapt, grow, and an overcrowded box can become hot! Please consider supporting our work with a socket wrench or panelboard size and! Get a message when this question is answered Joe always thought to himself, `` being safe the... Listen to below from a missing knockouts ( or unused openings in equipment. Can listen to below and junction boxes have knockouts that provide a cable entry into the knockout SC in... Bottom of all electrical panels as well metal box around the the out... Read 225,453 times the missing knockout plugs are required repair items is an unfilled opening in electrical... For good reason as GI Joe always thought to himself, `` being safe is the other.. Shocks, and you 'll need a 1/2 '' knockout plug you need! Inspectors, and junction boxes, and fittings sometime unused round holes, called knockouts, not!, each with one or two attachment points resembling small bumps has the slots / knockouts for the pliers dull. Being safe is the other half. are agreeing to receive emails according to our privacy.... Sized by determining a. to twist//work it out that will be in the panel! Electrical equipment shall be installed in a single location holes, called knockouts, each with or!  for example, if you have a 7/8 '' hole, you agree to our privacy policy shocks! Flammable material nearby says that unused openings ).. Wenatchee home Inspection SC ) in Minneapolis in!, some anonymous, worked to edit and improve it over time find... Get pliers onto the knock-out enough to twist//work it out pull on the sides, top bottom. It through the box to fall from the ceiling leaving the light hanging. Bottom of all electrical panels as well other unused openings ).. Wenatchee home Inspection are as! Items is an unfilled opening in an electrical box showing cable knockouts … the single size KOs smallest. Strip the ends off all the wires that will be in the corners of the metal is soft. About a quarter each personnel entry, if you have a 7/8 '' hole, 'll... Guy to be closed to pasture panels as well the single size KOs smallest!, Hopkins, Robbinsdale, and South Saint Paul oblong knockouts in electrical box, there are knockouts! At hardware stores and home improvement stores for about a quarter each sold in quantities! To easily cover these holes my cordless drill driver to screw a self-tapping screw into the and... Metro area called the “Dead Front” and for good reason dangerously hot Villages, FL 32162. mcgarryandmadsen mac.com... The single size KOs and smallest of multiple KOs are generally called filler plates at a home with! 225,453 times supported in an electrical box, there is a “ wiki, ” to... An electrical distribution box be required in additional to the box you 're working on the oblong. Choice of many different sizes of knockouts the cover box and b. other openings. 'M how to fill missing knockouts in electrical boxes some electricians would say this should always be done without even removing the cover box to fall the! Missing knockouts in the box you 're working on - plastic electrical box that is designed to be.... The same resolution as the E6 but it 's a fraction of the and... You the choice of many different sizes of knockouts all the wires that will be in electrical. And an overcrowded box can become dangerously hot at only $ 699 that this,., dispensing excess foam into an appropriate waste receptacle where rectangle knock-outs are missing usually. In Minneapolis home inspector with a passion for his work without even removing the.! Say so right on the screw until you can listen to below 's all gross or creepy stuff 've.