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What to Consider When Upgrading Existing Outlets to Include USB Ports


In today's world, we are constantly plugged in. With all the devices each of us own, such as phones, tablets, laptops, and e-readers, it can be a juggling act to remember to charge them regularly. It’s even more challenging when you live in a house with other people, who also need to charge their devices. If you're tired of fumbling around for a USB charger or dealing with the clutter of multiple chargers, you may wonder if it’s time to make the system more efficient. Although that sounds like a win-win, there are still some pros and cons to think about. Here’s what to consider when upgrading existing outlets to Include USB ports.

Pros and Cons of Upgrading to USB and USBC Outlets

  • Convenience: One of the biggest benefits of upgrading to USB and USBC outlets is convenience. With these outlets, you can simply plug your device into the wall and start charging. No more fumbling around for a USB charger or dealing with the tangle and clutter of multiple chargers.

  • Speed: USB and USBC ports can charge your devices faster than traditional outlets. This is because they have the ability to deliver more power to your devices.

  • Safety: USB and USBC ports are designed to be safer than traditional outlets. They have built-in safety features that can help to prevent fires and other accidents.

  • Aesthetics: USB and USBC outlets can add a touch of style to your home, since they are available in assorted colors and finishes that you can match to your décor.

  • Cost: USB and USBC outlets are more expensive than traditional outlets. However, the cost difference is relatively small, and the convenience and benefits of these outlets can make them worth the investment.

  • Compatibility: Not all devices, especially older models, are compatible with USB and USBC ports. However, most newer devices are compatible with these ports.

  • Installation: Installing electrical outlets can be tricky, so this is probably not an ideal DIY situation. It's safer and smarter to hire a professional electrician.

Should I Upgrade All of My Outlets?

The decision of whether to upgrade all your outlets to include USB and USBC ports is a personal one. If you have a lot of devices that need to be charged regularly, or multiple people who need to charge their devices, then upgrading every outlet in your house may be a good idea. However, you may not need to upgrade all your outlets if you live alone, or if you only have one or two devices that need to be charged.

The Middle Ground

If you are unsure whether to upgrade all your outlets, you may want to consider the middle ground. For example, you could upgrade the outlets in the higher-traffic areas of your home, such as the kitchen and the living room. This would allow you to easily charge your devices without fumbling around for a charger. On the other hand, you could leave the existing outlets in the bathrooms, or the dining room, as those areas are not as likely to be used for charging devices.

Ultimately, deciding whether to upgrade your outlets to include USB and USBC ports is really based on your needs, or your family's needs. Before going all in, several factors should be considered, such as the cost involved and the compatibility of your devices. If convenience is your key motivator, then it may be well-worth the investment to upgrade your outlets.


Wilcox Electric serves customers in Washington DC and the surrounding areas. If you'd like us to install USB and USBC ports in your home, in one room or throughout the entire house, give us a call. Contact us today to schedule an estimate for an outlet upgrade, or for any of your home electrical projects. 

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