You know those little plastic plugs that go in outlets to keep kids from sticking stuff in and getting a shock? I can’t stand ‘em. No home inspector can, because they make it a big hassle to test outlets. I did a quick poll (two people), and as it turns out, nobody likes them. In fact, studies have shown that most two-year-olds can remove the plastic plugs, so they’re not really all that great to start with. I have good news – they will soon be a thing of the past.
The 2008 National Electric Code (NEC) required all new or renovated outlets in homes to be tamper-resistant. That’s right, no more annoying child-safety plugs. This new requirement has already gone into effect in Minnesota, and these are the only outlets allowed in new construction homes today. Tamper resistant outlets are designed so that if you try to insert an object in to just one of the slots, it won’t go in. They will only accept a standard plug.
I’m currently in the process of replacing all of the outlets in my house with tamper resistant outlets. This way I won’t have to worry about my toddler trying to stick stuff in the outlets. Tamper resistant outlets cost about three times as much as standard outlets, but it’s a small price to pay for the convenience of not having to deal with plastic plugs, and to make sure your outlets are safer for children. Click the video below for a demonstration of these great devices.