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Installing Decora Device Against Tile or Granite

A problem many homeowners run into is this: new tile or granite is installed without enough room to clear the electrical devices. This is especially problematic with Decora devices such as rocker switches, block and GFCI outlets and slide dimmers.

Get Decora Rocker Switch Plates to Tighten Properly

Fix Decora cover plate screws that are too long.

Here is an example of 3 rocker switches sitting right up against the tile in a newly renovated kitchen backsplash.

Rocker Devices Against Tile Backsplash

The tile opening isn't quite large enough, so the devices are resting right up against the tile.

Since rocker plates screw into the outer parts of these devices, the 5/16" screws (standard for rocker plates) are too long and will hit the tile during installation.

One solution is to lift the devices up a bit with spacers, but that results in them sitting too high, which leaves a gap between the cover and the wall. If you go that route, you need these deeper beveled switch plates instead of standard ones.

Since shorter switch plate screws aren't available, the only solution for covering rocker switches and GFCI outlets that sit on granite or tile is to cut down the screws.

Use a pair of bolt cutters or screw cutters to snip off the ends of the switch plate screws, then use a file to remove any extra burrs. You can also buy plastic switch plate screws and cut them down to size, then paint them to match your plates.




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