I am in a dilemma whether to caulk electrical box face plates or not. The reason to do it is to improve the R value of the house but a downside is that any removal will be slightly more messy and will likely tear the paint around the plate.

Where I live, US Mid Atlantic, is not too terribly cold, I can see why they would do it in colder climates.

  • Imagine you've caulked all your faceplates, then a year later you decide to redecorate the room and want to change their color. You'd need to pry off the plates, scrape away all the caulk, touch up the paint, put on the new plates, caulk again... and then your partner changes their mind....
    – MattDMo
    Nov 20, 2021 at 1:40
  • This is up to the high end client that doesn't care how much stuff might cost later while looking good in the meantime. I won't unless you ask specifically, unless I think my paint job won't come out good because it sticks out 1/4".
    – Mazura
    Nov 20, 2021 at 2:31
  • Next question: Some jerk caulked all the face plates, now what? : Utility knife; don't cut yourself and don't cut past the plate and mess up the wall. Bang it with the other end of your screwdriver a few times; falls right off.
    – Mazura
    Nov 20, 2021 at 2:38

1 Answer 1


Definitely don't caulk.

Get appropriate (i.e., UL or ETL listed, fire retardant, etc.) foam designed for this purpose, such as this Frost King kit from Home Depot:



Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.