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How to Weatherproof Outdoor Electrical Outlets

It is quite handy to have outlets available outside for tools and other equipment, but if those outlets are not weatherproof, they could threaten your safety. An unprotected outlet could shock or electrocute you under certain conditions, and it can increase the risk of fire in your home. To ensure your home is as safe as possible, it is important to make sure all your exterior outlets are properly weatherproofed.

How to Inspect Outlets for Proper Weatherproofing

Outdoor Lighting Installation from Lon LockwoodIt is a good idea to inspect your outdoor outlets periodically for leaks, moisture, corrosion, or signs of damage, and you should inspect them before each use. For the best protection, a properly weatherproofed outlet should include:

  • A GFCI outlet – A ground fault circuit interrupter monitors incoming current and shuts the circuit down if an abnormal current flow is detected. This reduces the chance of electrocution and minimizes shocks. GFCI outlets should be used anywhere where moisture is present, including exterior outlets, and they should be tested often with their built-in test function to make sure they work properly.
  • A properly sealed box and cover plate – When not in use, the outlet should have a faceplate with covers that flip over the outlets, sealing them, as well as a weatherproof gasket between the box and the faceplate. Check your outdoor outlets often for a good seal at the outlets between the box and faceplate and between your siding and the outlet box.
  • A weatherproof cover – When the outlets are in use, it is a good idea to still have a weatherproof cover to protect the plugs and receptacle from moisture intrusion. Often made of plastic, these boxes feature openings at the bottom for cords while surrounding the plug and outlet with a bubble-like case to keep water out. Inspect the weatherproof cover occasionally for cracks, weather damage, or leaking seals.

If water makes it into the outlet’s interior, it could cause short circuits, fires, electrical shocks, and more. Even when your outdoor outlets are properly weatherproofed, it is best to avoid using them during inclement weather. Only use extension cords when necessary, and keep them out of high-traffic areas where they will become trip hazards. When you do use extension cords, inspect them often, and dispose of any with damaged or frayed insulation, missing ground pins, or loose terminals.

Outdoor Outlet Installation & Replacement in Webster, NY

When you need safe, properly weatherproofed outdoor outlets in Webster or Rochester, talk to our experts at Lon Lockwood Electric. We offer outdoor outlet installations and replacements, and we can inspect your current exterior outlets for leaks, wear, or damage that may pose safety concerns.

Our company serves Webster, Rochester, and the surrounding communities, providing complete residential electrical services that include everything from outlet and lighting installations to service panel upgrades and whole-home rewiring. We feature experienced, professional electricians with full background checks, on-time service, an A+ BBB rating, and a 100% satisfaction guarantee on all our services.

Call us today at 585-766-4702 or contact us online to schedule exterior outlet installations in the Webster or Rochester areas. We are eager to help with all your home electrical needs!