I recently purchased a early 1970's home that has this interesting outlet installed in the master bedroom. It is the only outlet in the entire house like this and I'm not real sure what it is for and if it should be removed. I haven't checked it for voltage or current yet as I don't have a multi-meter handy.

Unknown outlet installed in 1973 home

Just by looking, can anyone identify this for me? Is it safe, should it be removed? I haven't been able to see what it's wired to in the attic yet either as the wall is hard to get to in the attic.

  • 1
    What country do you live in?
    – Steven
    Jul 8, 2013 at 2:51
  • Looks like a french outlet to me.
    – DMoore
    Jul 8, 2013 at 3:00
  • 1
    Dallas/FortWorth area - Texas, USA
    – Kyle
    Jul 8, 2013 at 3:02
  • I had a weird thing similar to this in my home. But yours looks like it's down near ground level. Mine was up high and was for an electric clock according to the electrician.
    – hookenz
    Jul 8, 2013 at 4:01
  • Put a voltmeter across it to see if it's dead. It doesn't match any style of power point and if it did it's a dangerous design.
    – hookenz
    Jul 8, 2013 at 4:11

3 Answers 3


My guess is that it is a 300 ohm terminal for a rooftop television antenna. I'm surprised it doesn't have any labelling molded in. If you pull it out, I think you'll find a flat 300 ohm (non-coaxial) antenna cable inside. I googled a bit, and found this thread where someone followed their attic antenna lead down to an identical wall plate.

  • There was an old antenna we unmounted on the roof...
    – Kyle
    Jul 8, 2013 at 21:09
  • 1
    No power registered, attached cable appears to run up to the chimney where we cut the antenna off the roof. I'm still in the process of getting the attic into a state where we can easily move around without worrying about falling through, but just by using a flashlight and following the wire I think you nailed it. Thanks for the idea, I hadn't even though of an antenna having a special connector and faceplate.
    – Kyle
    Jul 9, 2013 at 13:05

Take the cover off and see if it is electric, wiring for an alarm system, intercom, or whatever. If it is just electric you can do whatever you want with it but you cannot hide it behind drywall - that might be the reason the plate is still on there.

If it is just speaker wire or low voltage that is not in use then you can cover with drywall.

  • I intend to pick up a multi-meter tomorrow to test it, how would I know if it was an alarm or intercom? The house has several disconnected components of an old alarm system we plan to get quotes on having removed and replaced with a complete new system.
    – Kyle
    Jul 8, 2013 at 3:12
  • Chances are if it was an alarm that the master bedroom was the hub so it might have low voltage and electric. I am guessing it was an alarm system (90%) and I am 50/50 on if there is electric in it. Most alarm hubs don't need electric but not sure why they would have a plate on it if no electric... other than laziness.
    – DMoore
    Jul 8, 2013 at 3:20

I have one like it and when my parents built their house it was for a TV antenna in 1973. Ours is definitely pre cable TV antenna.

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