Sockets into plasterboards

Summary: How to fit electrical socket boxes and switch boxes into plasterboard walls

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Wires through wall image Fitting and fixing socket boxes into plasterboard is a really simple operation. Proprietary plasterboard, or Dry wall, socket boxes are available (They can be bought in the tool store below or by clicking through to Neweys Online) which simply clip into place when the hole is cut for them. Dry wall socket boxes are a joy to work with and as you tighten the face plate onto the socket, or patress, box the box grips the plasterboard tighter. The same method is used for switch boxes as socket boxes.

Laying on plaster imageWhen you are ready for plastering onto your stud, or plasterboard wall it should look like this. The electrical cables are in place (This is called electrical first fixing) and the plaster is ready to be laid on. You can fit the socket and switch boxes now if you like, then remove them again for plastering, but it is usual to wait until the wall is plastered before they are fitted as shown on the right.


Switch box intallation into plasterboardOnce the wall is plastered you can follow the simple steps below.

Draw around socket box imagecut hole for socket box imageFinished hole image

  • Hold the socket box in position and mark round it with a pencil.
  • Use a pad saw to cut out the hole. There are obviously cables behind the plasterboard so push these out of the way as you cut.

Patress box with clips out imageimage Socket box with clips inSide view of socket box image


  • The image above left shows a plasterboard socket, or patress box. The red clips either side are what holds the box to the plasterboard. As you can see from the centre image they can be pushed into the box to allow them to fit in the hole you have cut in the plasterboard. The right hand image shows the patress box from the side.

Push box into hole imageOpen clips to grip plasterboard imageBack of patress box image

  • With the clips pushed into the box the box can be pushed into the wall. The lip at the front of the box sits flush up against the plasterboard. The clips are now pushed out and sit behind the plasterboard as can be seen in the right hand image above. This is a view you will never see yourself!
  • When the face plate is wired up and the screws are put through the holes in the face plate they screw into the holes in the clips of the patress box. As they are tightened they pull the clips up tight to the back of the plasterboard.

Finished box image

Go to our video section on "cutting plasterboard" to watch a three part film on how to cut plasterboard correctly.

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