multi-plug adapters

When you come across a multi-plug adapter, do you call it out? Not talking about a power strip, but the one that goes right over the duplex receptacle and add six outlets. Often times there’s a screw in the center that screws into the duplex receptacle behind it. Just curious how others handle these.

***Counter Receptacles

  • Inadequate number of receptacles present.
  • Recommend electrical repair with the installation of additional GFCI rated receptacles.***

What’s to write up? And who said it was on the counter?

Maybe someone had a bunch of devices they needed to plug in at some point. Just seeing the outlet extender isn’t by itself an issue, unless things are overloaded.

So the answer is “it depends”.


I merely cut and pasted a sample comment…
I do comment no matter where it is found…

What exactly would you call out, needs more receptacles?

I wasn’t picking on you, relax. :slight_smile:

Just curious… other than the screw in center which you mention (which I have not yet seen on any)… how is this any different than a power strip which you also mention.

Not suggesting either are ideal and depending upon use may be the incorrect solution, however what is difference between the two mentioned items.

I use them and expect many others do too.
If low load I see no big concerns .

Chevy Chase could have used one in Christmas Vacation. :mrgreen:

No I do not call them out.

I do call out lack of outlets over extend portions of counter tops and walls.

I just watched that tonight:D one of my favorites.

Simply because the current owner needs them has no reflection on any possible future usage.


I always call them out because it usually means a lack of receptacles in the area, and people love to overload outlet multipliers and extension cords, creating latent fire hazards.

In the picture below, the seller had disclosed that he was having electrical problems. Well duh.

During my follow-up for questions and comments, one of the most consistent comments I get is a thank you for noting the overuse of extension cords and outlet multipliers, the lack of receptacles, because it’s not inexpensive to add outlets to a room. My clients love it when the seller is the one who pays to add those outlets before close of escrow.

If the number of receptacles in a room were code compliant when the house were built how can you say that they’re not enough receptacles and allow the buyers use this as leverage to get seller to install them at the seller’s expense?

Very easily.

First, I have no idea if the number of receptacles in a room were code compliant, and I don’t really care anyways. I’m not a code inspector, and I’m certainly not a code inspector for every house built at different times under different codes.

Second, I recommend lots of things that we didn’t even have when most of these homes were built, like GFCI or AFCI upgrades. Recommending that a home have enough receptacles for all the crap we have in our homes nowadays is just plain common sense, which, as my wise old grandmother told me back in 1966, is not very common.

Third, times change. Even older homes have people living in them who have a computer, a printer, a monitor, a stereo system, a television, and a phone charger in every room. If that room only has two receptacles, I’m recommending having more receptacles installed.

I’m usually looking for at least one receptacle per wall, and in McMansions with long walls, one receptacle about every six feet. That will prevent the overuse of extension cords.

Back in 1978 my best friend’s house burned down. Fire investigators blamed it on overuse of extension cords.

I’m a firm believer that extension cords should only be used on a temporary basis, and I don’t consider temporary to be 30 days for Christmas lights.

I do not call it out as a defect in the home but do make mention of it in the report.
“Due to then age of the home, there are very few electrical receptacles in the home. This causes occupants to run extension cords or multi plug strips. This can be a fire hazard and can also be inconvenient for you. You may wish to have an electrician add new receptacles for you.”

I am sure they do. They are buying a used house not a brand new custom built home. Perhaps they want all the bells and whistles of a new home and don’t mind trying to screw someone else for their wants. The seller should not be coerced into supplying something to suit the needs of a future buyer based on the whims of an inspector citing something as a “defect” that may have been perfectly compliant when installed or feeling forced to make concessions for fear of losing the sale. The buyers need to weigh whether the shortcoming are worth overcoming and how much they are willing to pay to make it suitable for their needs and wants.

This is a much more reasonable response:

If the issues are safety concerns or a lack of maintenance issue my opinion changes based on the issues.

The spacing requirements are one of the least changed items in the codes. It is not that hard to keep track of. Do you comment on receptacle placement based on possible furniture positions?

Why are you expecting to see twice the number of required receptacles? Maximum spacing is no more than 12’ between. Cords are 6’.

Temporary is defined as less than 90 days by codes.

Uh, that’s a huge part of what a home inspection is. Duh.