Some things are a painful eyesore around the house, and even though they might be quite small, you can’t help but notice them. Cracks on the ceiling, scratch marks on the floor, a noisy plumbing system, and poorly painted outlets can drive home owners nuts.
The good news is that these items are fixable. You don’t have to spend a fortune to save yourself from these annoying problems. As always, there’s the right way to do it and a wrong way. Before you dive in and try to pull out a painted-over outlet to clean it, you should familiarize yourself with the proper procedure.
Why Are Painted Outlets Unsafe?
Contrary to popular opinion, painting outlets and using them afterward is unsafe. If you ever find yourself with a brush in your hand near one, make sure not to apply a layer of paint over it. Proper protection is necessary so that paint doesn’t get near it.
Pay additional attention to protecting the outlets and replacing the painted ones.
Although they’re quite simple, outlets still have a wiring system inside them. Once the paint breaches the outlet slots, it will dry and create a layer where one shouldn’t be. This will prevent certain plugs from achieving full contact with the metal pieces that are designed to power them.
The paint layers inside the outlets will warm up each time you plug something in. It might seem like a benign, small matter to be worried about, but a painted outlet can damage your appliances and cause problems in your home wiring system. It can also put you and your family members in harm’s way.
Painted Outlets Need to be Replaced
Instead of investing your effort into fixing the problem, you should replace the outlets with new ones.
Cleaning a painted outlet is a job for an electrician. Even they will tell you that it’s a lost cause and that you should get new ones. The great thing about outlets is that they’re inexpensive, so this little DIY project won’t cost you a fortune.
It’s worth the trouble and you won’t have to look at those ugly outlets ever again.
How to Remove a Painted Outlet?
In most cases, outlets that have a layer of paint on them can be problematic to replace. When painting an outlet, people also add a layer of paint on the screws that hold them. This unintentional action tightens the outlets and makes them harder to remove.
In order to remove the outlet safely, you’ll need to use a suitable tool. Screwdrivers can be quite helpful here, but when the screws are sealed in by paint, you might have trouble unscrewing them.
Using paint dilutions, in this case, might be dangerous. Any type of liquid that can breach the slots might lead to an electrical shock, so you need to be extra careful in this process.
If you don’t consider yourself handy, the best thing to do is contact your electrician and have a professional take care of this for you.
Conveniently Order from an Online Catalogue
This is the fun part. Although replacing a painted outlet might seem problematic by now, you should keep your eyes on the prize. You won’t have to look at an ugly outlet ever again. Outlets come in all shapes and sizes and you don’t have to go with the classical appearance. Browse through an online catalog, select a color that you like, and decide on a new interesting shape.
Now that you know how unsafe painted outlets can be, you should take immediate action to replace them. Have this in mind in case you move to a new place or when you decide to add a fresh layer of paint to your walls.