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Home Improvement Blog

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Screw That: 3 Reasons Wall Plates Shouldn’t Have Visible Screws


Glance over at the nearest light switch plate or outlet cover. What do you see above and below the switch or outlet openings? If you have standard wall plates, you probably see two little screws. No big deal, right? While you normally wouldn’t think twice about seeing those screws on every wall plate in your home, it’s time to give it a little thought right now. Keep reading to consider three reasons why those wall plates shouldn’t have visible screws.

Everything Else Hides Its Hardware

When you assemble furniture or hang décor in your home, do you leave the nails and screws visible? Of course not! In fact, a lot of unassembled furniture includes plugs or other kinds of covers specifically designed to hide the hardware that holds that furniture together. So why is it just generally accepted that those wall plates can leave their hardware out there for all to see? It’s practically indecent!

People naturally try to hide the hardware in every other part of their home because they recognize that it isn’t an attractive feature to leave visible. You want a nice, seamless look in your furniture and your décor, and your wall plates shouldn’t be an exception.

Cracks Can Happen

Have you ever been putting a wall plate back on, only to tighten that screw too much and crack the plate? Guess you didn’t know your own strength! While plates do sometimes get cracked in other ways, overtightening a screw is the most common cause. Of course, a material stronger than the standard cheap plastic could prevent this from happening. But hiding the screws can help as well.

If your incredible strength overtightens a screw and something cracks, a screwless wall plate would have that crack hidden behind the front faceplate, keeping the wall plate looking good as new, free of any signs of your superpower.

Screws Get Lost, New Ones Don’t Match

Have you ever had a wall plate missing a screw? Looking at that big hole in the front of your wall plate feels like looking at a boxer’s gap-toothed grin. If the screw goes missing somehow, the hole is incredibly obvious with a standard plate. And if you want to replace it, you’ll be hard-pressed to find an exact match to your plate’s color anywhere in your toolbox.

Screwless wall plates hide the screws behind a faceplate that snaps on, hiding the screws. That way, you can easily replace a lost screw with a mismatched one and nobody will know the difference.

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