My residence is a town home built in the late '90s, thus having non-tamper-resistant outlets. I assume that they are grandfathered in NEC? Am I required, by NEC, to install tamper-resistant when replacing an outlet?

  • Also, not all outlets, even if swapped out, are required to be tamper-resistant. There are currently four exceptions in the NEC, but your local authority may be different. Those exceptions are 1) any outlet over 5 1/2 ft. 2) any outlet behind appliances. 3) any duplex outlet readily accessible but is plugged in by two appliances, or a single yoke outlet that is plugged in by one appliance. 4) Or any outlet not in a habitable area of the house like attics, crawl spaces, and maybe outdoors. I say maybe outdoors because of habitable cabanas or other similar areas. – Kris Nov 10 '15 at 20:21
  • To where on the receptacle is that 5 1/2 feet measured? – Phil N Nov 11 '15 at 0:00
  • the code doesn't specify that. It just says receptacles 5 1/2 ft above the floor. – Kris Nov 11 '15 at 0:24

Yes. If you're not making changes, there's no requirement to swap them out. If you are changing out the receptacles for any reason, you'll have to install tamper resistant receptacles. You cannot replace the receptacles with non-tamper resistant receptacles (technically).

| improve this answer | |
  • I think you answered it more fully here – bib Nov 10 '15 at 16:31
  • Thanks to both Tester101 and bib for their answers. They cover the original question well. – Phil N Nov 11 '15 at 0:01

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