I've got two regular wall outlets controlled by one single pole switch. I want to replace them with new ones, and thought I just needed to grab a couple duplex plugins for them.

Except there's more wires than the duplex outlets have receptacles. I'm looking at 2 blacks, 2 whites, 2 reds (except on the furthest outlet there's only one red as the carrier) and I'm wondering what specific outlet type I need for this bugger to keep this configuration, or do I just cap the pairs and run one lead off them? See image for more details, any education welcome as always.

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  • Take a picture from the hot (red&black)side - these may have the tabs broken off, so only half the outlet is switched. Can't see in this picture, but it's the only thing that makes sense to me with that wiring setup. Probably the red is switched and the black is not switched, in the current setup. Check and/or picture of the switch, too - likely black in, red out.
    – Ecnerwal
    Commented Mar 25, 2014 at 23:54

1 Answer 1


If this is, in fact, a split outlet, you should be fine wire nutting the blacks and a black pigtail, the reds and a red pigtail, and you can connect the whites directly or wirenut them and a pigtail, as you prefer. You will need to break the tab connecting the receptacles on the hot side, at least (my guess is that they broke the hot tab and left the neutral tab connected, looking at the picture we're starting with.)

Connect that grounding wire to the new receptacle, as well...

  • Ya it's like you said with the tab (added image), I should have thought to check that! Sounds like I can just pair/cap the blacks/reds and make them single and use the duplex outlets I already picked up then? Or should I bother finding ones with this setup with the double hole inlets like that?
    – Chris W.
    Commented Mar 26, 2014 at 0:10
  • You're fine with wirenuts and the outlets you have.
    – Ecnerwal
    Commented Mar 26, 2014 at 0:12

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