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Strange outdoor "box", mounting block, and cover

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ctviggen

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I have been trying to replace the mount and cover for this
20200920_114010.jpg

Looks like the mount is 6.5 inches octagon, for vinyl siding. This is the old cover plate:

20200920_114014.jpg

The cover top is missing. If you take off the "bottom" of what was once the plastic cover, there's rubber-ish sealing material If you dig under that....you find a ROUND box, over 2 inches deep.

I cannot find a cover for a round box with a GFCI outlet installed. I could rig something with this:


But any cover I find is meant to cover a rectangular box, not a round box.

Anyone seen anything like this?
 

ctviggen

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Thanks for those. Of course, the easiest one to install is the hardest one to find. ;-)

This is for an in-law apartment, and I could install a GFCI breaker, although I'd have to see how things are wired. I have a spreadsheet (I'm an enginerd) with all the breakers and what they control, though I might have forgotten about tracing that one. No matter, I have one of those testers where you plug in the transmitter, then run the receiver over the breaker box to trace to which breaker the outlet is connected.

I'll try to do that this weekend.
 

ctviggen

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How the heck did you find that one? Very impressive. That one might work.

Let me see about getting a new mounting plate too. If I can figure out way to do this, I'll update with with new pictures.
 

Jeff Handy

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It looks like the old weatherproof cover was just a regular in-use cover for a square box.

So the attachment points would not line up for the existing round box.

But they cheated and just screwed it to the mounting block instead.

Which actually does not seem so bad, if the mounting block is secure, the gfci outlet is secure, and the cover keeps water out, I think I could live with it.

Maybe others can weigh in about it.
 

ctviggen

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I think when the old cover was on, it was likely fine. It's just that the top part of the cover is gone -- I think the plastic broke after a while. This is in a VERY sunny spot, which I'm sure does not help plastic survive over time. (It has basically destroyed our outdoor lights, which we bought to replace the previous lights, also destroyed by the sun.)

My mother, who lives in the in law apartment, is a bit particular about things and does not like it. Since I was installing another outdoor outlet in our shed, I figured I might finally tackle this one too, to replace with a proper cover. Then I started taking it apart...

Anyway, thanks for the help. Sometimes I think the research for certain things, like this, takes longer than the work does.
 

Jeff Handy

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Exactly right.

And clients don’t always realize how much research and leg work went into their “little five minute job”.
 

ctviggen

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As a homeowner who does a lot of stuff himself, you won't get any guff from me.

I often spend days, even several to many weekends, just doing research. For instance, I have an electrical engineering degree (two of them), so the basics of electrical come easy to me, but I always have to spend tons of time figuring out the codes, such as "How many wires can you put in a box?", "How many holes can you drill through a stud/joist, how big can they be, and where?".

I sometimes run a calculation in my head: how long will it take me to do the research and then the project (and do it correctly, including getting permits), as compared to paying for someone to do it? Sometimes, I do it myself; sometimes, I pay to have it done.
 

Snoonyb

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Not that it's a reflection on JEFF, but as often as not when you are just browsing around a site/s you run into things that you had no inkling existed, but are practical, in application.

I'll remember that cover.
 

Jeff Handy

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I have used this type of mounting block fairly often on siding like yours.

You have to make a cutout with a jigsaw or mini hack saw, to fit around the gfci outlet.

It is not nearly as firm as what you have now, but the support comes from the box below, if the box was installed properly and at the right depth.

 

MrMiz

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I'll throw out and "out of the box" idea. Look on Etsy and see if there is somebody with a 3dprinter in your area. Have them design and print an internal extension box that will get you exactly to the edge of your siding AND convert to the cover plate of your choosing ( the one you think will stand up to the sun the best). If they have done a lot of printing they'll know which material (plastic) will be best for the extension box and they'll be able to lookup all the measurements for the design. That way you get something simple that converts from custom to an exterior plate that you can get at the local home store. They'll probably charge you about $10 in plastic and then depending on how much design they have to do you can ask them about their design rate or create your own design in the application of your choosing. If they don't have to do any design work they shouldn't charge you more that $10 for the custom box.

I know this isn't exactly what your looking for but this is the beginning of your design and probably already has all the measurements figured out:

This also is an opportunity to justify buying your own 3dprinter if you have any interest. This is exactly the kind of thing I use my 3dprinter for... converting custom situations to more industry standard parts.

I wouldn't recommend printing the entire box for your situation (specifically direct sunlight) but the conversion would work great that would be buried in the wall.
 

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