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Insulate light switches and outlets

16 January 2009 511 views 2 Comments
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I was a little surprised by this one, and you might be too.

Try this: Go to a light switch on a wall opposite the outdoors. A hallway would be a good example. Take your hand, and feel if there is cold air blowing through.

Feel anything?

Now try removing the faceplate.

I couldn’t believe the amount of cold air blowing through even on a calm (but cold) day! On a windy days its very noticeable.

Fortunately the fix is simple and relatively inexpensive. Once again, at your local home improvement store they sell gaskets or precut insulation for light switches and outlets. Give these a try.

Installation is very straight forward. Just fit it under the outlet cover or faceplate.

The problem may exist in other switches and outlets as well, so don’t just stop with ones near the outdoors. Check out as many as you can.

You'll be very surprised to find how much cold air can enter a house through an electrical switch like this one!

You'll be very surprised to find how much cold air can enter a house through an electrical switch like this one!

Caution: Always, always use care when working around live outlets. Never allow the screwdriver to touch the wires unless the power is off.

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2 Comments »

  • Jonathan Allen said:

    light switches should be made from oxygen free copper so that they last longer~;-

  • Brian said:

    Great point! It’s often disregarded, but sticking the gasket under the panel is a good way to save money! You can save 40% on your heating costs with good foam insulation.

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