Receptacle question

Discussion in 'Electrical Forum discussion & Blog' started by Nate R, Feb 5, 2008.

  1. Nate R

    Nate R New Member

    Messages:
    472
    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    Any reason I should use the screws instead of the push in connector on a receptacle? Why?
  2. frenchie

    frenchie Jack of all trades

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    Last edited: Feb 5, 2008
  3. Bob NH

    Bob NH In the Trades

    Messages:
    3,317
    Location:
    New Hampshire
    Only if reliability is important.

    I have repaired a few connections where the sharp device that captures the wire created a nick in wire, which subsequently broke at that point. Since then I have always used the screw terminals if they are available.

    On the other hand, I have some Square D QO tandem breakers from 1965 with push-in terminals that have served more than 40 years without any problems. There is no screw terminal on those breakers so there was no alternative to the push-in terminals.
  4. Lakee911

    Lakee911 I&C Engineer (mostly WWTP)

    Messages:
    1,328
    Location:
    Columbus, OH
    They tend to come out or create loose connections. The good receptacles allow you to insert the wire in the hole and then as you tighten the screw it clamps down inside--not just spring fit. Get that kind of take the extra minute to wrap them around the screw.

    Jason
  5. Mikey

    Mikey Aspiring Old Fart, EE, computer & networking geek

    Messages:
    2,714
    Location:
    Central Florida
    If you ever need to take the receptacle out you'll be glad you didn't use the back-stab. Also, the spec-grade back-stab receptacles I've seen don't allow #12 wire to be stabbed. I agree with Lakee911 -- the best are the back-wired ones that allow you to push the wire in directly, but use the screw to secure it.
  6. Alectrician

    Alectrician DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    689


    Yes.

    More surfuce area is contacted with this method.
  7. Nate R

    Nate R New Member

    Messages:
    472
    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    OK, points taken. Was replacing a broken light fixture with another one that will only be there temporarily, and the new one had both the slots and screws, so it hit me to ask here about it. I've always used the screws in the past.
  8. Bill Arden

    Bill Arden Computer Programmer

    Messages:
    584
    Location:
    MN, USA
    I like the "back Clamp" type better.
    You strip the wire, insert it and tighten the screw.

    Pros
    reliability
    Ease of use

    Cons
    receptacle cost
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