How to Wire a Plug

Installing or replacing plugs is a straightforward yet crucial aspect of maintaining an efficient electrical system. This comprehensive guide will walk you through the necessary steps for wiring or rewiring plugs, ensuring you have the knowledge needed for the task.

Materials required:
You can wire or rewire a plug using a handful of readily available and commonly used tools:

  • New plug
  • Wire strippers
  • Wire cutters
  • Screwdriver

Step 1

As with any electrical task, the initial and crucial step is to disconnect the power supply to the appliance you’re working on, ensuring safety during the process.

Step 2

Next, take out the old plug and discard it appropriately, ensuring proper and safe disposal.

Using a screwdriver, unscrew the screw on the plug’s face and set it aside. Then, loosen one side of the cable grip to free the cable from the plug. Afterward, gently unscrew each terminal pin to release the wires before disposing of the plug.

Exercise caution while removing the plug to prevent any damage to the wires.

Step 3

After removing the old plug, strip off 50 millimetres of the outer sheath from the cable, then separate the wires into Live, Neutral, and Earth.

For newer appliances, the wires are typically colour-coded as follows:

Live: Brown

Neutral: Blue

Earth: Yellow and Green

However, for older appliances, the wire colour coding may differ slightly:

Live: Red

Neutral: Black

Earth: Green

Step 4

Referencing the new plug for guidance, use your wire cutters to trim each wire to the correct length. Typically, in most standard plugs, the brown/live wire should be the shortest, while the yellow and green/earth wire should be the longest.

Step 5

With the wires at the appropriate lengths, use the wire strippers to remove a section of insulation from each wire, leaving just enough exposed wiring to match the depth of each terminal in the plug.

Before inserting the wires into the terminal, ensure to gently and tightly twist the exposed wiring by hand, allowing all the wiring to fit securely into the terminal.

Step 6

Now, proceed to insert the wires into the terminals. It’s crucial to ensure that each wire is inserted into the correct terminal, as indicated by the markings on each terminal.

Step 7

Once the wires are firmly in their respective terminals, proceed to tighten the terminal screws and then the cable grip to ensure a secure connection between the wires and the plug.

Note: Loose terminal screws can lead to overheating, so ensure they are tightened properly.

Step 8

After tightening all internal screws and ensuring there is no loose exposed wiring, proceed to test the plug for security.

To do this, pull sharply on the cable. If everything remains in place, the task is complete. All that remains is to put the plug cover back on and secure it in place.

By following these steps, wiring or rewiring a plug can become a remarkably straightforward process, as long as it’s approached with extreme caution. If you lack confidence, it’s advisable to seek assistance from a professional electrician, such as one of our engineers at Ability.

Need an Electrician?

Feel free to contact Ability by filling out the form on our website, giving us a call at (+44) 01892 514495, or sending a message to Be assured that we prioritise rapid responses and will promptly attend to your inquiries. We aim to offer you the assistance and guidance you need without any unnecessary delay.

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