How to Join Electric Wires

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How to Join Electric Wires
electric wires (Creatas/Creatas/Getty Images)

Joining electrical wires only takes a few seconds, but must be done correctly to ensure safety. Wires are colour-coded to make the job fairly easy for anyone to do. Follow these steps to ensure the joined electric wires function properly.

Skill level:
Easy

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Things you need

  • Wire strippers
  • Pliers
  • Wire nuts

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Leave 6 to 8 inches hanging out of the junction box where you wish to join two or more wires.

  2. 2

    Ensure the power is off to the area by turning off the breaker or mains switch.

  3. 3

    Start with the ground wires first as a safety precaution.

  4. 4

    Bend them so they all end at the same point. Grasp their ends with a pair of pliers and twist in a clockwise motion for three full rotations.

  5. 5

    Cover the end with a wire nut, it will twist on then click. Once the wire nut clicks, it is fully in place.

  6. 6

    Strip 1 inch of insulation off each white wire in the box then repeat Steps 4 and 5. Join any remaining wires that are the same colour and gauge in this same fashion.

Tips and warnings

  • Yellow wire nuts are good for connecting two wires. Use a red wire nut to join three or more wires.
  • Don't work on a hot circuit or you can be shocked.
  • It is best to leave electrical work to licensed professionals if you are unsure of what to do. Electricity is very dangerous and you can be burned, shocked or killed by even a small mistake.

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