Surface back boxes are designed to be used where installation within the wall is not possible or desired. This means that surface mounted back boxes are required to install wiring devices, which can result in less labour and mess as the walls do not need to be chased or chiselled. However, pattress back boxes can be more prone to accidental damage as they are exposed and protrude from the wall. Although commonly available in plain styles, some decorative options are also available. Surface back boxes are offered with a choice of gang options and depths to suit the requirements of the installation
Under certain circumstance you may not be able to, or want to, put back boxes in the wall. When this is the case you can also buy surface mounted back boxes, also know as pattress boxes. These are often available in the same finish as the sockets and switches, so they match the front plate, but be aware these are not universal sizes, so some plates, especially larger plates, may not sit well on the front of them. Check the details before buying.
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