Can You Drywall Over a Junction Box? (Read This First!)

So you’re renovating your home and want to get rid of those pesky junction boxes. Can you just put some drywall over them and be done with it? While it may seem like a time-saving measure, it’s not always the best one. 

You should never Drywall over a Junction Box as it’s not only considered bad practice but also a very dangerous one. Instead, you can use several other options such as a Poster Board junction box cover, Vintage window, Dropcloth Magnet Cover, Woven wall hanging, Rustic wooden sign, Picture frame, or a Portable mirror.

Any professional will tell you that Drywall over a Junction Boy will create potential problems down the road. But why is this, and what would happen if you do Drywall over a Junktion box? We should first look closely at junction boxes and find out when you can and can’t drywall over them and any better alternatives.

Is It Okay To Drywall Over A Junction Box?

The short answer is no. You should never drywall over a junction box. Not only is it against the local building code, but this practice can also cause several issues in the future. Therefore, Drywall over a junction box is not a good idea if wires are not long enough or even if a small part of the wire is damaged.

The biggest problem with drywalling a junction box is that it’s illegal in most states. According to the local building code, the junction box must always remain accessible. Even if you make a tight connection to increase durability, it’s still illegal.

While completing a house renovation project, it’s recommended to Drywall around the junction box – instead of over it. With this approach, you’ll be able to attain a smooth finish. Afterward, you can cover the junction box using other alternatives and paint over it to hide it as much as possible.

What Happens If You Drywall Over A Junction Box?

A junction box contains electrical wires that run through the ceiling and behind the walls of your home. It contains heat and sparks from a short circuit and protects the wires from accidental damage. So, if you conceal it permanently, you might have to tear up the Drywall in case of an emergency.

The biggest safety-related issue with concealed junction boxes is that it is nearly impossible to evaluate and fix dangerous conditions. For instance, if your home has encountered a high-voltage surge, you’ll need to inspect junction boxes to identify the damage. However, if you have covered it using Drywall, it’ll be impossible to inspect, promoting even more dangerous conditions. 

How to Hide a Junction Box?

Now that hopefully you’re convinced that Drywall over Junction box is not only bad practice but also dangerous, let’s look at how you can do it correctly.

There are several approaches that you can take to hide a junction box, such as:

  • Poster Board junction box cover
  • Vintage window
  • Dropcloth Magnet Cover
  • Woven wall hanging
  • Rustic wooden sign
  • Picture frame
  • Portable mirror

How Do You Drywall Around A Junction Box?

Here’s a complete step-by-step guide on how to drywall around a junction box:

Measure and Prepare the Drywall

First of all, measure your room’s dimensions and determine where the first panel will end. To do so, you can measure out from the joists or the corner -perpendicular to the strapping. If the drywall sheets do not cover the entire surface, you’ll need to cut the panels beforehand.

To cut Drywall, mark the area of your needed drywall sheet. Put a T-square alongside the mark and score it with a utility knife. You don’t have to put a lot of pressure. Afterward, stand the sheet and snap it to cut the sheet.

Drywall Ceiling before Walls

It is recommended to Drywall the ceiling before the walls. Yes, drywalling a ceiling is much harder than walls, but it will make the job easy and fast. In addition, the walls will provide support to the ceiling drywall, reducing the chances of cracks and failure.

To cover your ceiling, hoist the first sheet into one corner and ensure the edges are perpendicular to the joists or strapping. Afterward, hang the remaining sheets on both the ceiling and the walls. 

Cut the Drywall for Junction Box

While hanging the drywall sheets, make sure to mark the areas with junction boxes. Once you are done with hanging the drywall panels, it’s time to cut the Drywall for the junction box. For ceiling drywall, you can use a rotary cutout tool to cut the panels.

  1. Plunge the rotary cutout tool into the center of the mark
  2.  Move it outward until it strikes the inside of the electrical box
  3. Afterward, withdraw the rotary cutout tool
  4. Plunge it back in (This time outside the box)
  5. Move the tool counter-clockwise around the junction box

For the wall’s Drywall, you can use a keyhole saw. Using this tool is quite simple:

  1. Measure the junction box cutouts from all four sides
  2. Transfer the measurements to the Drywall
  3. Cut the electrical box openings by running the keyhole saw

Repairing the Drywall around the junction box is not a piece of cake. So, make sure to put extra effort into planning and sawing the cutouts. If you notice imperfections around the junction box, you can use drywall mud and tape to cover it.  

Finish Drywall

Afterward, screw the drywall panels using a screw gun. If you are hanging 1/2-inch drywall panels, use 1-1/4-inch fasteners and set them below the paper’s surface. Put at least 2 coats of drywall mud to hide the drywall joints and run drywall tape over it.

Afterward, put another coat of drywall joint and sand the surface. Finally, primer the drywall sheet to get a smooth finish. Once done, you can paint or wallpaper your Drywall if needed!


Can You Enclose A Junction Box In A Wall?

No! Enclosing a junction box in a wall is against the local building code. Although it’s dangerous, this practice is also impractical. This is because if you need to access the electrical box in case of an emergency, you’ll need to cut a hole into the wall! 

How Do You Hide A Junction Box In A Wall?

Instead of concealing the junction box, the better approach for you is to hide it. You can use picture frames, portable mirrors, and electrical box covers to hide a junction box. While hanging the Drywall, you can also put the sheets on the sides of the box. This way, the box won’t jut out from the wall!

Can A Junction Box Be Under Insulation?

As long as you can remove the insulation without damaging the junction box, you can place the insulation over it. Without insulation, the junction box can become rusty or catch on fire. So, putting insulation over a junction box is actually a good idea (If you can remove it easily!). 

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