Light switch and power outlet screw direction

Which direction does the slot run on the screws in your ligh

  • Vertical

    Votes: 6 54.5%
  • Horizontal

    Votes: 2 18.2%
  • Random

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Don't know or don't care

    Votes: 3 27.3%

  • Total voters
    11

somdfunguy

not impressed
Which direction does the slot run on the screws in your light switch/outlet cover? -didn't realize the question was truncated in the poll question

Also when you moved into your current living arrangement did you alter the screws position?

Bonus question: Is the ground (looks like a cartoon mouse hole) up or down?
 
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I always leave the screw slots vertical when I install outlets or switches or their covers, but I don't necessarily police them to make sure they stay that way.

The ground hole is below the 120v and neutral slots. Do some people normally install regular 120v duplex outlets with the ground holes on top?
 
The ground up/down can depend on the code. There are some states that require the ground to be on the top side, not sure if MD is one of them.

As far as the screw position...... who is anal enough to care? Tighten them until snug and walk away.
 

PrchJrkr

Long Haired Country Boy
PREMO Member
Ad Free Experience
Patron
Screw slots MUST be vertical! I learned this when working as an electrician's helper many moons ago. Customers notice the damnedest things and look for imperfections...

As far as the ground pole on outlets go, residential applications just SHOULD have the ground pole at the bottom. My workshop has a mixture. Ground pole down for lead melting pots, stereo, small hand tools. Ground pole up seems to secure a bulky cord better (large power tools and extension cords).
 

Larry Gude

Strung Out
When I got my journeyman's card in VA last century, you'd have been laughed out of the building for even asking about 'proper' plate screw position.

As for the ground, you had a union background if you did ground up as that was DC code (Washington) and pretty much only union guys worked DC. If you didn't have a union back ground, you did ground down.

The reasoning goes like this; ground up, if something falls down a wall, say, a ladder or something capable of cutting into the cord, you wanted it to hit the ground first as socket mounted ground up meant the wires within the cord were such that the first conductor something could cut into was the ground.

In non union circles, the reasoning was that if something fell to knock a plug out of the socket or it fell out, gravity dictated that the last contact point to break would be the ground, thus, ground down receptacles. Also, if it is loose and kinda sagging, it is possible that, ground down, the hot and neutral can be exposed a bit.

I do ground down. When I see ground up, I think 'union guy was here'.

There is valid argument for both. Some extension cords are made so that ground down helps support the thing a bit better and help keep it from falling out.

6 on one hand, half dozen on other. :buddies:
 

MADPEBS1

Man, I'm still here !!!
wow, do people really worry about that, if they do they probabaly make sure the door is locked 5 times before leaving house.

Ground is on the bottom
 
When I got my journeyman's card in VA last century, you'd have been laughed out of the building for even asking about 'proper' plate screw position.

As for the ground, you had a union background if you did ground up as that was DC code (Washington) and pretty much only union guys worked DC. If you didn't have a union back ground, you did ground down.

The reasoning goes like this; ground up, if something falls down a wall, say, a ladder or something capable of cutting into the cord, you wanted it to hit the ground first as socket mounted ground up meant the wires within the cord were such that the first conductor something could cut into was the ground.

In non union circles, the reasoning was that if something fell to knock a plug out of the socket or it fell out, gravity dictated that the last contact point to break would be the ground, thus, ground down receptacles. Also, if it is loose and kinda sagging, it is possible that, ground down, the hot and neutral can be exposed a bit.

I do ground down. When I see ground up, I think 'union guy was here'.

There is valid argument for both. Some extension cords are made so that ground down helps support the thing a bit better and help keep it from falling out.

6 on one hand, half dozen on other. :buddies:
It also plays in with new requirements for GFCI/AFCI breakers in bedroom and kitchen circuits. If the ground is up and gets hit first, the GFCI/AFCI pops rather than an overload/short tripping a regular breaker.
 
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