I recently replaced drywall in my bathroom but made the mistake of not checking to see if the existing electrical outlet boxes lined up properly. The result is that the electrical outlet box (and more importantly the receptacle itself) are sunken in about 1/4 inch and don't line up correctly with the outlet cover wall plate. At this point the drywall is already set so I can't (or more accurately, don't want to) tear down the drywall.

Is there some sort of product that I can safely use as a spacer to have the outlet stick out an extra amount of space from the electrical box?

I'll try to get a picture or two up soon...

3 Answers 3


I have used a plastic spacer from a Mechano set on the screws that holds the receptacle in the work box. That one was about 1/4 inch by 1/4 round.

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They look like this although the one in the picture is not the same size.

  • That's EXACTLY what I'm looking for. I didn't know those actually existed lol. Thanks
    – Mike B
    Dec 6, 2014 at 22:26

If you use a spacer the inset must be equal to or less than 1/4 of an inch to be NEC compliant.

See this question for relevant information: How do I extend outlets after installing a backsplash?

Personally, I would just get a box extender like the one in the answer to the question above. They are fairly cheap and better by design (in my opinion).


Code says that the box can't be recessed further than 1/4", so you're right at that limit. If the boxes are recessed further than that, then legally speaking you have to use box extenders. If they're recessed at all and the material exposed in the recess is combustible (wood, paper on insulation, etc.), then you have to use box extenders so that there isn't a gap.

In any case, box extenders would be another way to get everything lined up nicely.

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