Adding An Enhanced Outlet For A Home Planetarium Projector On Valentine's Day

Posted on: 27 January 2017

Since Valentine's Day is in the middle of February, it's not likely that you can lie outside under the stars with your love on that night.

However, you can bring the stars into your bedroom with a home planetarium projector that slowly spins while the heavens open up before your eyes.

However, you may have an issue when you attempt to find an available electrical receptacle near your bed. The nearest outlet is likely to be filled with a charging adapter for your love's cell phone and a table lamp.

Never fear, love will find a way. You can replace the current outlet with a USB enhanced model.

What you will need to install a USB enhanced outlet

The USB outlet

These types of outlets have two USB ports in the center between the two receptacles, so you can charge two phones or tablets and still have two free receptacles.

Open cover plate

Because the USB ports need to be accessible, you can't use your old cover plate with the divider between the two receptacles.

An open cover plate is a simple rectangular frame that snaps onto a sub-plate that is held in place by the outlet itself.

The sub-plate is included with the open cover plate purchase.

A flat head and a philips head screwdriver

Removing the old outlet

You must first turn off the circuit breaker that controls the power to the outlet that you intend to replace. If you fail to do so, your tale of love may resemble more of a tragedy such as Romeo and Juliet.

If you're not sure which breaker is the correct one, plug a working appliance into the outlet and turn off your chosen breaker. If the appliance goes off, you've made the right choice.

When the power is off, remove the old cover plate with the screwdriver, then loosen the two screws that hold the outlet inside the gang box in the wall.

Pull the outlet out and disconnect all attached wires by loosening the terminal screws on the sides of the outlet. Remove the outlet.

Connecting the new outlet

You'll start by placing the sub-plate for the cover plate around the outlet. You will have either one or two sets of three wires that you disconnected from the old outlet.

If only one set of wires was found, connect the black wire to the top brass colored terminal by looping the bare end of the wire around the terminal screw and tightening the screw securely.

You will then connect the white wire to the top silver terminal and the green wire to the single green terminal at the top of the outlet.

If a second set of three wires remains, connect the second black wire to the bottom brass terminal, the white wire to the bottom silver terminal, and the second green wire to the single green terminal with the other green wire.

Push the new outlet into the gang box inside the wall and tighten the upper and lower screws to secure it, then snap the cover plate onto the sub-plate.

Using the USB enhanced outlet

After turning on the breaker, your outlet will be ready to use. No need for cumbersome charging blocks that rob you of receptacle use.

Just plug in your home planetarium projector and surprise your love with a night sky full of stars.

You can even buy models that have occasional shooting stars that blaze across your ceiling, inviting you and your love to make a wish for Valentine's Day.

If this isn't something you're confident doing on your own, hire an electrician from a place like Action Electric