Install Electrical Outlet Cost

How much does it cost to install an electrical outlet?

Most modern households are heavily reliant upon electrical energy supplies, and many people find the need to run power cords all over their homes to get electrical service in the places desired. It is both simple and efficient to install a new electrical outlet (or even upgrade and expand the existing number within the home) in order to eliminate unwanted extension cords and to maintain home safety. For this discussion we will look at the costs of increasing the number (and quality) of outlets in the average home, including both 120 volt and 220 volt equipment.

The Craftsman Book Company indicates that the average number of outlets per room in a 2500 square foot home tends to be two or three in each space. These are not always conveniently located, which is a major reason for additional installations to be necessary. Additionally, a homeowner may do something as simple as upgrading a gas-powered appliance to one relying on electricity, and this will demand the installation of a 220 to 240 volt plug too.

Cost breakout

Unless the homeowner is knowledgeable in home electrical systems, the installation of outlets is not to be considered a "DIY" project. This is particularly true if new circuits are required in the fuse panel too. Traditionally installation is done by a professionally licensed electrician. The costs for a project will include:

  • Provide electrical wiring and lighting to code - This is going to depend upon the amount of work required, but electricians average from $65 to $85 per hour. Any given project might be priced on a per item basis, or the electrician might simply craft a bid based on the number of tasks to be performed. Generally, it is recommended to have an electrician perform several installations or projects while in the home.
  • Standard outlets of 120 volts - less than half of an hour and usually around $100 each;
  • Heavy-duty outlets of 220 to 240 volts - less than half of an hour usually around $100 each;
  • Grounded outlets for kitchens, bathrooms and any areas near water or moisture - less than an hour and usually around $120 each;
  • Installing a new circuit on the electrical panel and running the appropriate amount of conduit to the new location - this might take up to a full hour's time and cost around $185 each;
  • Upgrading panel for heavy-duty outlets which involves adding a 220 to 240 volt circuit, running conduit, and installing receptacle - this can take several hours and tends to cost around $650 for each addition.

Enhancement and improvement costs

  • Installing child-proofing on all plugs and outlets;
  • Requiring electrician to also install decorative switch plates during any installations or upgrades;
  • Updating switches while electrician is in the home. A set of three-way switches includes wiring, two switches, and a box at a cost of $70;
  • Upgrading two-prong outlets to modern, grounded three-prong variants; and
  • Expanding a single outlet into a duplex receptacle as this can reduce the cost of the project while also increasing the number of outlets to which the owner will have access.

Additional considerations and costs

The wisest course of action for electrical outlet installation is to work with a licensed electrician who can help to accurately determine the appropriate number of outlets for the home or the room in question. A homeowner must always request references, proof of insurance, and obtain information about warranties on the work. It is a good idea to also seek at least three bids before selecting the provider if doing a full upgrade project as this will lower total costs considerably.