5 Reasons Why You May Need a Pop-Up Outlet in a Kitchen Countertop
Countertop outlets are popping up in kitchens everywhere, but do you need one?
From convenience to appearance, and code requirements, here are 5 reasons why you may want, or be required to have pop up countertop power outlets.
1. Kitchen islands and peninsulas have their own unique electrical code
Some states or counties require at least one outlet to be in the countertop of an island or peninsula, however sometimes more are needed. The same rule that applies to walls, sometimes applies to islands. Code can require the same number of outlets every 2 feet in an island or peninsula, since it doesn’t have a wall.
2. Windows are in the way of wall outlets, sink and range considerations
Code requires walls to have outlet spacing every 2 feet in kitchens. If a window is where an outlet needs to be, then installing an outlet that pops out of your countertop might be your only option.
The countertop space behind a sink and a wall can't exceed 18" without an outlet on the wall behind it, the space behind a range and a wall can't exceed 24" and has the same requirement. If there is no wall behind your sink or range to install an outlet, and you have exceeded these limits, then you may need an outlet in your countertop to pass code.
3. Keep dangerous and unsightly cords from hanging over the sides of islands
With the popularity of large flat islands in recent years, it has become common to place outlets on the sides of islands. These hanging cords have become a safety hazard for children, from catching them with their arms while running, to the little ones pulling on the cords. A pop up outlet placed directly in the countertop keeps the cords out of the way so children can't trip or pull on them.
Side outlets on islands don’t always allow you to get that small appliance you need on your counter exactly where you want it, especially in the middle of long islands. Islands have become the resting place for food and drinks when entertaining. Pop up outlets let you put the receptacle anywhere you wish on your island, creating a cleaner appearance than cords running from the side of the island, to the middle of the island.
4. Charging convenience
Pop up outlets can not only be used for powering food related appliances, but also for charging your mobile devices. Laptops, tablets, and smartphones find their way to kitchen islands all the time. With the ability to charge from the plug, USB A and USB C charging ports, and a wireless QI charging top, there are numerous options to charge multiple mobile devices at once. From cooking, to kids doing homework, who doesn’t need an outlet to plug into?
5. Outlet free backsplashes
If you are remodeling your kitchen, or building a new home, chances are you spent countless hours picking out the perfect backsplash. It can be painful to then have to cut into your beautiful brand-new backsplash and clutter it with unappealing sockets. Pop up outlets are an alternative solution, and can be concealed in the counter where they are less noticeable. You can also put them in the bottom of your cabinets, they are hidden when not in use, but pop down when needed.
Check your local code before ordering
Code for countertop outlet enforcement varies from state to state, and even down to the county they are being installed in. As always, we recommend consulting with your local inspector and electrician to see what is required of your specific kitchen before remodeling, or building your new home.
Purchase a pop up approved for countertops
At KitchenPowerPopUps.com, we only sell pop up power outlets that are approved for use in countertops and wet locations in the USA and Canada. They are constructed to meet NEC Code 406.5E for countertop installations, and they have tamper resistant plugs. The entire unit is UL listed for USA installations, and cUL and CSA approved for Canadian installations. The tops are water rated to meet varying levels of water intrusion. They can be installed in wood, granite, marble, quartz, concrete, or any stone surface.
- Ryan H