I've got an old junction box that used to have a light fixture attached to it (it's been removed). I'd like to remove the junction box entirely and sheetrock over if it's not serving any purpose (for aesthetic reasons).

I think it used to have 2 switches that controlled it, but it has four 3-wire romex in the box. One of the old switch boxes is still around. Both that switch box and this junction box are hot. Further, in the box, both the black wire bundle and the single black wire are hot. There are no traveler wires anywhere. I would be wholly unsurprised if this box is wired weird/not-to-code by the former owners. I vaguely remember having intermittent trouble depending on what configurations the switches were in when that fixture was operable.

Here's a photo and a diagram for clarity. junction box wiring diagram What's going on here? Is this feeding something else in my house or did these runs all used to go to switches? Thanks!

  • You know that thing, where people install switched receptacles instead of overhead lights in a room. Builders do it to save $20 on wiring a room, and because this is common in cheaper housing, it’s perceived to be fashionable right now. Believe me, it'll get old fast. Probably outlaw it too, it's nothing but trouble for first responders. Commented Nov 22, 2017 at 10:55

1 Answer 1


The cable with the white wire in the black wire bundle goes to a switch and the single black wire is the switched hot.

The others feed through to something else.

The National Electrical Code requires junction boxes to remain accessible. So you can't cover it up.

However, they do make a Code-compliant splice device for NM cable that could be covered up. It is designed for only one cable though. So, you would have to remove enough of the existing wiring so you only have to splice one cable.

Or, you can rewire the circuit to move the J-box elsewhere.

Good luck!

  • 1
    Those are expensive and you can use several to eliminate the box. I have used them and they do work well where no box is requested, I think I paid about 18$ ea for the splice tap model but that was a few years ago probably cheaper now.
    – Ed Beal
    Commented Nov 22, 2017 at 14:17
  • Thanks, ArchonOSX. Quick follow up. I've added some new info to the original question. Does this new information change your original answer at all?
    – riiiiicola
    Commented Nov 22, 2017 at 16:49
  • 1
    No, it still appears as though you have one cable coming from the main panel (hot feed) and two other cables going on to other boxes. So, two cables are just making joints in this box. The fourth cable is the switch loop and is the white that is in with the blacks and the returning black wire. You may have had trouble because it looks like the crimp caps are not crimped. Hard to see in the picture. If you can pull a wire out of the crimp caps then you should crimp them good or replace them with wire nuts if you are going to leave the box there.
    – ArchonOSX
    Commented Nov 22, 2017 at 18:12
  • Use an inviso-plate.
    – Paul Logan
    Commented Nov 22, 2017 at 18:50

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