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How to Install a Blade Series Outlet into a Bathroom Vanity DrawerUpdated a year ago

Step-by-step instructions on how to install a Docking Drawer Blade Series outlet into a bathroom vanity drawer.

“Hi, I'm Scott Dickey [of Docking Drawer] and I'm going to show you how to install a Docking Drawer in a bathroom vanity. 

So the first thing that I've done here is I've removed the top part of the vanity. It's a folding door here that gives me a good view inside of the drawer, and that's going to be necessary to see where the Docking Drawer is going to go and make sure there's no interference with the arms or anything like that. So it's really important to be able to have access from either the top or the bottom before you start the project. 

And you can see here that there's already an outlet installed back behind the drawer box. I had my electrician do that because I knew I was going to be doing this project, and it's really not that difficult. Most people aren't going to have an outlet back there, but a lot of bathrooms are going to have an outlet already installed somewhere near the vanity. And all the electrician had to do was cut a hole in the back of the vanity and then use this thing called a fish to run a wire from this outlet down to the hole in the vanity and then install an outlet there.

So a couple of hours' time from an electrician or maybe a moderate to advanced DIYer could do it, making sure, very sure that the power is turned off before you do any electrical work if you're not familiar with that thing. Anyway, step one is I've got my outlet back there. I know where it's going to go, but I've got my docker here and I'm going to play around with it and see exactly where I want to position it. 

Oh, and one more thing. So we have a choice between 15 amp outlets and 20 amp outlets. So how do you know which one to use? One of the little sockets is going to be shaped like a T if it's a 20 amp. If you have two sockets and neither one is shaped like a T, that's a 15A. So if you have a 20 amp socket, you need to buy a 20 amp Docking Drawer. You should buy a 20 amp Docking Drawer. So this is a 20 amp outlet because this socket here is shaped like a T. A 20 amp Docking Drawer has a plug that will only fit in a 20 amp receptacle because it's got a T-shaped pin here.

It doesn't matter which way you mount the Docking Drawer. It can be with the arms to the left or the arms to the right. 

So I'm just going to play around with it. Let me grab my Sharpie and I'm going to see what's the best way to fit this thing in here. And keeping in mind that I need to make sure to stay away from the P trap and make sure the arms don't interfere with the P trap. So I'm just going to hold this here and move the drawer back and forth to make sure that it's going to clear the P trap

Like that. That's what I'm talking about there. So I'm going to hold it in position and I'm going to grab my Sharpie and just roughly mark where this thing is going to go. Okay, that's good enough because we're going to take the drawer box out and cut it and you're using the template that's supplied with the Docking Drawer. So that's the first step, the planning stage. The next step is cutting the hole in the back of the drawer box. Okay, so now we are all set up to drill the hole in the back of the drawer box. And here's what you need to do. You need a little punch or maybe a nail set, tape measure, painter's tape, scissors, a little hammer, a jigsaw, and a power drill with a half-inch bit. 

So first thing I'm going to do is I'm going to take the template that's supplied to the Docking Drawer. There are actually two. There's one for a Docking Drawer Duo and there's one for a single. 

I'm installing a single so I'm going to use that template. I'm just going to cut the template out. I don't have to be super accurate about it but just cut out just past the outside dimensions.

There we go. There's our cut-out template with the marks for where I'm going to use the punch, and that's going to be where I'm going to drill four half-inch holes. Then I'm going to use the jigsaw to cut out the rectangular shape cut up. I'm going to line that template up with the marks that I made, and I'm going to use my tape measure to make sure that it's on their square. Okay, looks good. Just give me one more piece. All right, then I'm going to take my punch and line it up with the holes. So now I've got my marks for my drill. Use my drill, and line it up. Sometimes it's helpful to have a piece of scrap wood that you can back up against the hole where it comes out on the other side and it will keep the wood from splintering a little bit. I got that going. Okay. And then the next thing is I'm going to make some marks on the back here for my jigsaw. So I'm just going to line up against the bolts and make some marks so that I know where to go with the jigsaw.

All right, there we go. Now I've got my rectangular-shaped hole on the back and then I just need to go with the jigsaw from hole to hole. Okay, looks good there. Now we could just do a quick fit check. Okay, looks good. The hole does not have to be perfectly accurate because the cover plate will cover any gaps between the receptacle box and the hole that you just cut. And I think we're done. So clean things up a little bit here. We'll take it back upstairs and install it. So the next step, now that we're ready to go to mount the Docking Drawer and get it into the cabinet, is we're going to install the Docking Drawer in the back of the drawer box first. So the way you do that is just slide it in and then push it back out. Now, we're going to line it up equally from the top to the bottom, and then you're going to look at these holes in the mounting bracket and make sure that they are over the wood portion because the cut-out in the back of these robots is intentionally oversized so that it'll pivot and slide in.

So we'll get our drill set up and get this in the position where we want it. Okay, all good there. Now we're going to take the three washer head screws, put those someplace where we can get at them, and I'm going to set the drawer box on the glide. There we go. Might help to have a Sharpie to mark at least the first hole. 

So the trick here is to get the arms lined up so that they're parallel with each other and parallel to the bottom of the vanity and then centered in between the back of the drawer box and the back of the vanity.

Make sure that this bottom arm is parallel with the bottom of the drawer box or the top of the cabinet, and that it's parallel with this top arm as well. I used a square to draw a perfectly vertical line here. And then as I'm locating this rear bracket, I just make sure that this part of the bracket is parallel to my vertical line. And that will help you get these arms nice and straight.

Okay, so the way we're going to do that is we're going to move the drawer out and just hold the back of the rear bracket, guess where it should go, and then push the drawer in. Once it's in, we're just going to position it to where we think it should go. And you'll notice that if you move the rear bracket left and right, that's going to position the arms back and forth. So the idea is you're going to move it left and right until the arms are centered between the back of the drawer box and the back of the vanity.

Here's an example of how to adjust the arms on a Docking Drawer so that they end up in the middle of the gap between the back of the drawer box and the wall. These screw holes here, the mounting screw holes are slotted. If you push or pull according to the slots, that's going to center the arms. So what you want to do is find the center spot like that and then lock them in place with the screwdriver. And that is going to ensure that the arms are centered behind the drawer box and they don't hit either the drawer box or the wall when you close the drawer.

Okay, that looks good there. Now I'm going to just test it here. That looks good. Now I'm going to take my Sharpie and reach in here and mark. Yeah, that looks pretty good. Now I've got it marked, I'm going to grab one of the washer head screws and I'm just going to do whichever one is easiest.

Get that first one in there. Okay, there's one. There's two. Okay, there's three. Now we can just give it one more try. Looks good. Okay, the last thing is plugging it in. One thing you might want to do is I bought some little clips that are used for holding the electrical cable. You might want to just put one of these in to fix the cord up against the back of the drawer box so that it doesn't hit the arms. It's not really important, but it's a nice thing to do. I'm going to do two of them here. There's one. And that just holds the cord up and out of the way so it doesn't hit the back of the drawer box. But that's it. The last thing is we're just going to use the two screws to put the front cover on there. Got my cover plate and then my two screws. So obviously the vents in the cover plate line up with the thermostat reset button. That goes on there like that. All right. All good there. Hopefully, you can see that. Now, we'll give it a try. Grab a blow dryer or anything else you can use to test it. All good. That's it. 

And one quick troubleshooting thing that you can do if it doesn't work, the first thing to always check is the GFCI tripped on the outlet that's feeding this outlet. That's very common. The other thing might be the thermostat. 

So probably everybody knows that all Docking Drawers come with a built-in thermostat, and that's right behind this little grill here. If you turn this on and it's not working, the thing to do is to take a Phillips head screwdriver or a pen or something like that and push on either the little black or white reset button. If the thermostat has been tripped for some reason, pushing on this will reset it and should start it up. We can even test the thermostat to make sure it's working. If you hold the blow dryer on for several minutes, the power should go off. There we go. The power's off. Now, you will have to wait another several minutes for the thermostat to cool before it's able to be reset. Right now, it won't reset because the whole thing is still hot. But give it five minutes, reset it, and you'll be good to go again.”

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