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How to Conceal Electrical Wires with Crown Molding

Ask This Old House master electrician Scott Caron uses crown molding to conceal wiring and bring more electrical outlets to a bedroom

Steps:

  1. Turn off power at the circuit panel and use a voltage tester to ensure power is fully off.
  2. Begin to install the crown molding by snapping a chalk line three inches down from the ceiling all around the room. That will serve as a guide to mount the molding track.
  3. Insert a screw to secure the track every three feet using fasteners and a drill/driver.
  4. Above an existing outlet, drill a hole in the track using a spade bit. This will allow the wires to be fished up from the existing outlet to the new track.
  5. Fish new wires from existing outlet up through the new hole in the track.
  6. Run wire around track by screwing it in with a zip tie every few feet.
  7. When you’re ready to add a new outlet in one spot, drill another hole using a spade bit into the track, then cut out an outlet hole using an oscillating saw.
  8. Fish two sets of wire down the wall to the new outlet hole--one to feed the new outlet and one to continue feeding power to the other outlets on the circuit.
  9. Seal wire holes with flexible putty.
  10. Measure your crown molding lengths, subtracting for the prefabricated corners, and make a straight cut.
  11. Install the crown molding pieces and any prefabricated corner pieces or keystones to join longer lengths.
  12. With the crown molding in place, finish off each outlet by making the proper wire connections. Tie ground wires together, using a special wire nut that allows one wire to come out and tie to the ground screw on the outlet.
  13. Neutral white wires connect to the silver screws and black hot wires connect to brass screws.
  14. Cover the outlets with an outlet plate.
  15. Turn the power back on at the circuit panel.