Pros and cons of the electrical box

Pros and cons of the electrical box


It is difficult to find a dwelling, where there is no power supply system. Use in this case, two options for laying utility networks - hidden and open. Below we will consider the second method, when the wires are placed in a special electrical box. It can be plastic, in the form of a plinth, metal, wooden, with latches or without them. The box hides electrical wiring and ensures its safe operation.


  • 1What is an electrical box
  • 2How to choose an electrical box
    • 2.1Metal boxes
    • 2.2Cable-channels from a tree
    • 2.3Plastic Cable Channels
    • 2.4Manufacturers of electrical boxes
  • 3Self-assembly of the electrical box
    • 3.1Installation of boxes for self-tapping screws
    • 3.2Installation of cable ducts on dowel-nails
      • 3.2.1Video: dowel-nail - the most common and most controversial fastener
    • 3.3Fastening of an electrotechnical box on liquid nails
    • 3.4Recommendations for installing cable channels
      • 3.4.1Video: how to mount on drywall
      • 3.4.2Methods of fixing the cable channel
      • 3.4.3Video: how to make an angle on the cable channel
    • 3.5Rules for installation of the box
    • 3.6Video: installation of plastic cable duct

What is an electrical box

The use of hidden wiring in the house can cause a lot of inconvenience when repairing its individual sections or when it is necessary to completely replace the cable route. To do this, violate the integrity of the wall covering.

The wires laid in the boxes can be changed or repaired at any convenient time

New technologies have saved the owners of the premises from such "dirty" and expensive work, offering special products for laying open electrical wiring. Let's highlight their advantages over the hidden way of laying cables:

  • Easy access to wiring anywhere in the circuit;
  • reliable protection against mechanical damage and moisture;
  • security.

Electrotechnical box is made in the form of elements of square or rectangular section and can have different length, width and volume. In addition, you can buy all the necessary accessories: corner connectors, tees, plugs, etc.

The presence of various connecting and decorative elements allows the use of cable channels for the laying of networks of any configuration

The electrical box consists of:

  • grounds. In the cross section, it resembles the letter "P which is formed by the bottom and side walls. On the lower part there are holes for fixing the product to the surface. If they are not enough, you can drill your own in any convenient place. To fix the upper part there are latches on the walls;
  • the upper part (lid). Reminiscent of the base, but has a smaller height of the side walls, in which the recesses are made for clamps on the counterpart. The face is smooth, monophonic or patterned. Fixation to the base occurs until the click.
    The electrical box consists of a base and a lid, which are connected with a latch

The type of section and dimensions of the box are selected based on the type and number of cables to be laid.


How to choose an electrical box

Industry offers different types of boxes for electrical wiring. They differ in the material of manufacture, the place where they can be installed and the appearance.

Cable ducts are made of plastic, wood or metal

Metal boxes

Metal persistently tolerates the impact of external factors on it. Pros - high strength, excluding damage to the cable inside from impact or fire. To prevent moisture from getting inside, rubber plugs are used, which turn a conventional product into a sealed one. The disadvantage is a low electrical safety: if the cable insulation is damaged or insufficient, the breakdown on the box will occur, which can cause electric shock.


Do not install metal boxes in places with high humidity due to the danger of damage to the material by corrosion from constant contact with moisture.


For the installation of metal cable ducts you will need:

  • Hacksaw or scissors for working with metal - for fitting to size;
  • electric drill or screwdriver - for manufacturing mounting holes.

Cable-channels from a tree

The advantages of wooden boxes:

  • environmentally friendly non-toxic material;
  • does not conduct electricity;
  • there are no special requirements for insulation of wiring.


  • rapid destruction in case of improper operation. One of the main reasons is the effect of moisture: although the box is covered with materials that can soften its influence, it is not possible to completely protect the tree from decay;
  • flammability - short circuit can cause fire and fire in the room. To reduce the risk, wooden products are treated with non-combustible mixtures.
    Wooden cable channels do not conduct electricity, but easily ignite and are afraid of moisture

The installation of wooden boxes is carried out with the help of:

  • hacksaws for wood;
  • manual or electric drills.

Plastic Cable Channels

The most common type of product. The popularity of plastic boxes is facilitated by:

  • low cost of materials;
  • resistance to acids, fire, moisture and temperature (there is a special heat-resistant cable duct for saunas);
  • Dielectric properties even in places with high humidity;
  • resistance to mechanical damage;
  • easy installation;
  • large selection of colors;
  • the possibility of simultaneous use of boxes of different sections;
  • easy installation or addition of switches and sockets.
    A plastic cable duct can be installed in humid environments

To install a sufficient construction knife and scissors.

Manufacturers of electrical boxes

From manufacturers of boxes for an electric cable we will note such companies as:

  1. "Ecoplast".
  2. Insta;
  3. Chelyabinsk ZEMI.
  4. CJSC "Ruvin".
  5. DKC.

Self-assembly of the electrical box

Most boxes are attached to the wall, rarely to the ceiling or floor. Next, we will consider all options for installing a plastic cable duct to different surfaces, including:

  • gypsum board;
  • bricks;
  • concrete;
  • tree.

Installation of boxes for self-tapping screws

The method of fastening to self-tapping screws is used when laying an electric cable in wooden houses or in premises with wall surfaces from GKL (gypsum board). It is necessary to use wood screws with a length of 40 mm with a pitch of 400-500 mm between them. The calculation is based on the load on the cable channel. When installing on an aluminum profile, used for plastering gipsokartonnoy walls, use self-tapping screws for metal. They are suitable for any metal surfaces up to 2 mm thick.

For mounting, you can use an electric screwdriver (drill) and a self-cutter with a length of 40 mm

On uneven surfaces, the step of fastening the screws should be reduced to hide the wall defects.


Installation of cable ducts on dowel-nails

To fix the plastic cable duct to the walls of brick or concrete it is recommended to use dowel-nails. Prepare a perforator with drill Ø6 mm.

  1. Drill a hole Ø6 mm in the base of the cable duct with a pitch of 400-500 mm.
  2. Mark the place of their location with a marker on the surface, attaching an electrical box to it.
  3. Punch the holes for the dowel-nails.
  4. Fix the base of the box to the wall with dowels.
  5. Hammer nails into them with a hammer.
    After preliminary drilling of a hole, a dowel-nail is inserted into it and hammered with a hammer

Video: dowel-nail - the most common and most controversial fastener


Fastening of an electrotechnical box on liquid nails

For installation on a ceramic tile or a smooth surface, for example, of metal, you can use a special glue called "Liquid nails". We recommend that you use this method only when you can not use other options. It is best when the glue acts as an additional fixation means with self-tapping screws or dowel-nails.

  1. Make a markup on the surface.
  2. Apply glue to the bottom of the box.
  3. Attach the base to the wall surface and glue it back.
  4. Wait until the glue begins to set.
  5. Attach the electrical box again to the markings and press it tightly, but carefully, so as not to damage the product.
    Mounting on liquid nails is used as a supplement to fixing on self-tapping screws or dowel-nails

Recommendations for installing cable channels

  1. The smoother the surface, the larger the step of fixing the box.
  2. Use a chair to create corners under 45o when connecting cable channels to each other in the corners. You can also use ready-made connectors for the manufacturer.
  3. Observe verticality and horizontality during installation, using a plumb line and a building level, respectively.
  4. Before installing the electrical box, mark the surface where it should be fastened.
  5. Use special dowels for gypsum board if the cable channel is to be fixed in a place where there is no sheathing.
    To fix the box to the plasterboard in those places where the profile frame is not installed, a special dowel, the walls of which, when the screw is screwed in, diverge and are pressed against the surface of the wall from the back side
  6. It is advisable to start the laying from the corner, so it will be easier to cut and join later on.
  7. Install the cable-channel at the final stage of repair, for example, on wallpaper, so as not to cut them later.
  8. Installation on the ceiling is similar to the wall.
To install a cable channel, a place under a decorative ceiling skirting

Video: how to mount on drywall


Methods of fixing the cable channel

A plastic cable channel can be laid in two ways:

  1. With the use of accessories. To do this, together with the box, additional accessories are bought - bends, corners, tees and plugs. When using hardware, it is easier to lay the cable and not depend on the turns of different radii. There is an opportunity to correct uneven angles.
  2. Without accessories. Docking in corners and junctions of cable lines is due to trimming of the box. Carefulness and precise calculation is required in order not to leave gaps in the junctions, otherwise the design will look ugly. But if the work is done correctly, you can significantly reduce the cost of materials.

Video: how to make an angle on the cable channel

Rules for installation of the box

  1. It is forbidden to heat boxes with cables into the wall, they should always be freely accessible. Do not cover them with decorative panels or wallpaper.
  2. In the skirting board, the wires should be located at least 15 mm from the floor.
  3. The degree of protection of the electric plinth must be not lower than IK 07.
  4. If there is no skirting board, the lower part of the cable duct should be located on the wall at a height of 100 mm from the floor.
  5. Do not place cable ducts closer than 100 mm from the chimneys.
  6. In the box, the wires must be laid freely.
  7. It is possible to place wires in a cable channel from different electrical circuits, but their insulation must correspond to the highest voltage.
  8. For laying low-current lines, it is desirable to use a separate box or place them in a separate groove of the box with a partition.

It is desirable to connect sockets, switches and other wiring accessories with the channel base. Otherwise, they may eventually fall out.


Video: installation of plastic cable duct

When choosing the method of laying an electrical cable in a room, do not forget about safety and further work related to repair or full replacement. The use of an electrical box solves these problems, and the methods, selection rules and installation instructions given above will help in this.

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