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How to Change Screwless Flat Plates

Updated April 17, 2017

Screwless outlet flat-plates provide a cleaner appearance in comparison to toggle light switch covers. Use them with standard duplex or dimmer light switch receptacles. Screwless flat-plates, however, are incompatible with round-face duplex outlets and toggle light switch models. The tongue-and-groove, snap-shut installation makes this housing project a breeze for homeowners wanting to add a finishing touch to existing interior design.

Switch off the power circuit in the home's electrical control box. Use a Phillips screwdriver to dislodge the old outlet plate's four screws. Turn the mounting screws counterclockwise about 1/2-inch from the drywall. Place each corresponding sub-plate behind the mounting plate, then interlock both halves by snapping the tongue-and-groove design shut. Be sure the sub-plate rests on flat drywall or hardened plaster. Assess the evenness of the structure with a level.

Align the mounting strap's screw holes with the sub-plates guide posts, then snugly tighten the mounting screws back into position. Do not over-tighten the mounting screws.

Read the directional markings inscribed on the backside of the screwless outlet flat-plate. Position the screwless outlet cover over the electrical socket in accordance with the directional markings. Lightly push the screwless outlet cover until hearing a faint clicking noise.

Things You'll Need

  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Two sub-plate halves
  • Level
  • Screwless outlet flat-plate
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About the Author

David Gaines began writing professionally in 2010 for various websites including laminate construction companies, wholesale furniture companies, blog operators and sole proprietors needing promotional advertisements. Mr. Gaines attends Hillsborough Community College and is currently working towards an Associate of Arts in liberal arts. He plans on eventually obtaining a Bachelor of Arts in English.