electrical panel My electrical panel is mounted on plywood which is secured by 4 nails into a stud and the top 2x4. I want to drywall this last bit of wall. Can I pull those nails and temporarily prop the panel on something while I drywall? Do I need an electrician? Should I leave it alone and drywall around it? What should I do?

  • 3
    I am surprised this passed inspection with the romex exposed and in front of the studs. If this is in a dedicated electrical closet I can see it being allowed in some areas but if you have any electrical inspections be prepared to build a cover for the wiring with 1/2" sheetrock or plywood, the minimum in the last couple of states I have worked for wires below 8'.
    – Ed Beal
    Commented Sep 5, 2017 at 13:19
  • 2
    I agree with Ed. If you're converting this from an unfinished space (basement, garage, etc.) to a habitable room, the rules about how this box is wired change. It may not fit into your current plans, but building a small closet around the box might be appropriate. Just make sure you follow the codes for working space around electrical equipment, and entrance to and egress from working space.
    – Tester101
    Commented Sep 5, 2017 at 14:04
  • The panel is on an exterior wall near the foot of the stairs. We are making the basement just habitable enough for me to move my home office down there as well as being play area for the kids. I assume the original builder did the framing and insulation but I'm only guessing. That yellow tag claims that it passed inspection but I likewise wonder how.
    – Curtis
    Commented Sep 6, 2017 at 3:28

2 Answers 2


I would leave the panel as is on the plywood and install drywall right up to the edges.

Before installing the drywall carefully sneak some lengths of 1x3 or 1x4 pine boards up under the edge of the plywood with about half of its width exposed. Then screw through the face of the plywood into the pine boards in a few places to secure them in place. This will provide a decent edge to then secure the edges of the drywall to when you fit it into place butted up near the plywood edge. You might want to consider slipping some plastic end cap over the edges of the drywall before sliding the sheet in place. This would protect the edges of the drywall and provide a more finished edge to mud up against.

If the boards are installed carefully you should be able to avoid ripping away the poly moisture barrier. You may also need to do a bit of cleanup regarding that mess of coax cables.

  • 1
    The 1x3 splice backer is definitely the way to go. I would wtill go plywood out to the joists, because that plywood really needs more support than that. This is a hacked installation at many levels. Commented Sep 5, 2017 at 15:52
  • I'm thinking maybe I'll actually do a bit of extra "under-framing" with 2x4s half hidden behind the plywood edges so I can screw the drywall and the plywood to that and have it really solid.
    – Curtis
    Commented Sep 6, 2017 at 3:19
  • 1
    You can do that but it will mess up your insulation.
    – Michael Karas
    Commented Sep 6, 2017 at 8:47

It's probably also secured by nails behind the panel.

Actually, you don't want to do that. That plywood has an important utility purpose, it's where the power, phone and other utilities attach. You need it.

The one thing I would do is extend the plywood to span out to the joists. Feel free to lift up the cables and paint under them, might be hard to tell it's not drywall. Don't paint the cables, it's important to be able to read their markings. It's utility area, it's supposed to look ugly.

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