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Question DetailsAsked on 6/6/2013

how much should an electrical outlet and light switch cost to install?

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Depends entirely on how far the wires have to be pulled from, and access (unless you don't care about drywall holes). A new outlet (not sure if you are talking plug outlet or for a new light ? - I will assume that, since you also say light switch) has to have power pulled from a circuit with adequate available power rating for that use, and in some jurisdictions the electrical code prohibits pulling light circuit power from wall outlet circuits, so it may have to come from an adjacent room's lighting circuit or even the breaker box. The wire has to be pulled to the switch, then from the switch to the light outlet, so you may be talking 50 feet or more of new wiring.

If readily accessible from a basement with exposed wiring and joists (or easily removed suspended acoustic tile ceiling) or from an accessible attic, or able to pull from an immediately adjacent wall outlet and then run up to an open attic and across to the light fixture location, could be as little as about $125-250 though generally more like $200-300. If requires pulling horizontally through walls (i.e. access holes every few feet in the drywall) then could be a much as $500, plus $200-400 drywall repair and repainting.

The toughest is installation in concrete, cinder block or solid brick walls, and in ceilings without an open attic above them to freely run the wires. In extreme cases, I have seen siding removal as the best solution to install the wiring from outside the house thenn putting the siding back on, to avoid tearing into pricey interior finishes. Obviously, that can run to $1000 and more.

If you get into this type of situation due to difficult access, you should consider running the wiring in races (metal or plastic troughs or tubes that are fastened to the inside of the walls, with the wiring concealed inside), or even track lights with a long cord to a wall outlet and an in-line cord switch. That is what I did in two places in our house to avoid tearing into insulated exterior walls - the white cord is not really very noticeable against beige walls and white ceiling, and do-it-yourself cost today would be only about $50-100 for a 4-8 foot track with 3-4 adjustable light heads.

Answered 7 years ago by LCD




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