AC 120V Blue Plastic Outlet Box

Is it ok to use those blue plastic boxes found at Home Depot to install a light switch using romex 12/3 in drywall. I asked 2 employees and they said yes but they say yes to anything. It was in the electrical section next to the metal boxes and some grey ones but they were out of grey which they had displayed with the switch. I was just wondering if the blue was the same as the grey because I know they use blue for low voltage.
Thanks, Noel
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It better be okay, cause I have used a bunch of them. I like the blue ones more than the the gray, though I don't know why; maybe the color.
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Yes. many of the low voltage boxes are blue plastic but most of them also have no back! Question, if HD folks "say yes to anything" why did you bother to ask?
If the drywall is already in place, I hope you got the "old work" box or got some Madison straps.
Stan
On 18 Nov 2003 12:05:04 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com (Noel) wrote:

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On 18 Nov 2003 12:05:04 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com (Noel) wrote:

If it's approved for AC, then yes. Personally I hate plastic boxes, and only use metal ones. Of course at my age, I stick to "tradition".... :) Besides, plastic is flammable, metal isn't.
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I assumed that the plastic is sufficiently fire resistant to handle anything the wiring could throw at it. Now, I have no actual knowledge of that, but I hope I am right; since I happen to like plastic boxes.
Anyone with an authoritative opinion?
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Wade Lippman wrote:

Hi, No markings(specs.) on the box? Tony
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anything
Those blue boxes are extremely durable, borderline indestructable. Put a propane torch on one once and see what I mean. I wouldn't worry about it anyway. The wooden framing the box is attached to is certainly not fire retardant. Dave

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Metal is a conductor and rusts. Plastic isn't and doesn't.
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HA HA Budys Here wrote:

Hi, Also it may be a better insulator for air infiltration. I used couple when I need more outlets out at my cabin. Was easier to work with than metal box. There is even one with butteryfly screws so it can be mounted where there is no stud but drywall. Tony
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Noel,

If this were an outdoor outlet (i.e. in a carport or something), I would say no. The blue boxes are not weathertight.
However, since you mentioned you were installing the switch in drywall, I'm assuming your switch will be mounted indoors.
I'm guessing the drywall is already in place, and you'll be cutting a hole in the drywall to install the box? If that's true, you'll need the "old work" or "remodel" type of box. The box slips into the hole in your wall, then a couple of little arms flip out on the back side as you tighten the mounting screws. This basically "clamps" the box to the drywall, and is actually quite sturdy. In fact, I have often used the "old work" boxes to do certain new work as well.
The blue boxes are less expensive than metal boxes and are actually very sturdy. More importantly, they are non-conductive, much like most power tools these days that are "double-insulated". If a wire should happen to come loose at some point in the future, the box itself will not conduct electricity.
I haven't tried it personally, but I've also heard that the boxes are fairly fire resistant, within reason of course.
I'd say it's really a matter of opinion (and possibly local codes) which box you use. I prefer the blue plastic boxes myself, but occasionally use metal boxes as well in some situations.
Anthony
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The plastic boxes are nice too because you don't have to ground them. Thanks, Tony D.
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Wrong. Orange is for low voltage....at least in this state.

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Thanks for the answers. The blue box has wings that flip up to attach to drywall for 'old work'. I'm installing in a remodeled kitchen. I have used the metal outlet 'old work' with the tie straps but found this plastic easier because the wing is attached. The plastic box was the same price as metal (99 cents) but you don't have to buy the tie straps seperate. I ask the home depot employees hoping they're not just restocking the isle. Some have been in the business and know their stuff then interrogate you to make sure you know what you're getting into while others just look at you and nod their head. I had what seemed like an 18 yr old ask me if I needed help and I knew right away he was going to waste my time so I thought I'd see if I was right. I asked him for 4 inch piping for a french drain and he looked around and pointed to what seemed like piping and said - 'that's all we have', of course it wasn't.
Anyway, the blue box seems fine.
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