The Great Outlet Comparison: Lutron, Leviton, or LeGrand?

Lutron, Leviton, LeGrand Review
Lutron, Leviton, & Legrand: Duplex Outlet Side-by-Side

When undertaking a new project, the choice of which outlets to use is likely not the first question that comes to mind.  Usually, larger (and more fun) topics like space planning or material composition are our first considerations.  And rightly so: big moves are the most prominent features of a project and make the biggest impact on our finished spaces.  However, it's always important to remember that there's much more to a project.  As Charles Eames famously said: "The details are not the details.  They make the design." This sentiment is baked into FLUSHTEK, the idea that good detailing brings a project to its highest level.
So what does this have to do with outlets?  Well, just like a beautifully designed piece of furniture, an outlet is a designed product with nuance all its own.  In this post, we're turning a critical eye to the three most common screwless-wallplate duplex outlets: Lutron, Leviton, and LeGrand.  We'll break down the pros and cons of each and explain why the Lutron Claro is the best system to build your next project around.
 
Charles Eames Detail Quote
 
Charles & Ray Eames Poster from the Vitra Design Store

 

Lutron v Leviton v LeGrand

We'll start with a quick rating of each brand's Design, Finish, and Build Quality for those just here for the quick-and-dirty.

Brand Cost Design Finish Build Quality
Lutron Claro $15 ★★★ ★★★ ★★★
Leviton Adorne $12 ★★☆ ★☆☆ ★★☆
Legrand Radiant $10 ★☆☆ ★★☆ ★☆☆

As shown above, the Lutron Claro is the clear winner. It's got the best finish options, the best match between receptacle and faceplate, and it's built well.  The price is what most-often makes users question going with Lutron, but as you'll see below, you really get what you pay for.

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Lutron Claro: The FLUSHTEK favorite.  Not only will using the Claro line with FLUSHTEK get you modern flush outlets throughout your project, your other outlets will be good-looking, solidly built, and consistent.

Lutron Claro Review

 

  • Design: The design is simple and elegant, without added complications that make some of its competitors appear cheap.  The size feels right as well: not too large, and not too small. It's subtly rounded corners add a touch of modern sophistication.
  • Finish: The finishes options with the Claro line are expansive.  They offer glossy, matte, textured, and metallic finishes, with perfect matches between the receptacle and faceplate.  This is huge for us.  The outlet should read as a single object and not an assembly of two poorly matched parts.  Lutron does this very well.
  • Build-Quality: The build-quality of the Claro line is everything you'd expect from a well-designed product.  The faceplate and outlet are both flat and without imperfection.  The attachment method is via four plastic hooks near the corners: we've found that it secures the faceplate well and removes nicely when required.  The assembly is streamlined without feeling cheap or weak.

Lutorn Claro Faceplate Construction   Lutron Claro Receptacle Detail

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Leviton Decora: This is a fine outlet, but it has some issues that were difficult to look past.  It's a bit cheaper than the Lutron Claro, but feels lacking in both the design and quality departments.  See below.

Leviton Decora Outlet Review

  • Design: The design of the Leviton outlet was okay, although the slightly chamfered edges felt a little cheap.  The size is nice; a bit smaller than the other outlets we reviewed.  However we really don't like the embossed logo on the face of the receptacle, which is an issue with the  LeGrand as well.  Good design means not having to look at a company logo when you walk through your own home.
  • Finish: The Leviton's finishing leave a lot to be desired.  The faceplate is very glossy, and it highlights the poor build quality (more on that later), and the receptacle doesn't even match!  It's somewhat glossy, but noticeably different than the faceplate.  There are less options for color and finish as well, although I'd recommend seeing both faceplate and receptacle in person before moving forward with any of them.
  • Build-Quality: The build-quality of the Leviton is mediocre.  It attaches via four ratcheting clips at each corner, and you detach it from a single pry-point at the bottom.  We don't love the single-point mechanism as it often feels like you must exert a lot of force to get it off.  It also runs the risk of local damage to your walls around that particular area.  Otherwise it feels pretty sturdy, although the biggest issue is the manufactured flatness of the faceplate and receptacle.  Both have prominent rippling on their face, which is apparent when viewing the outlet from an angle. This is its biggest issue, and ultimately makes the outlet look cheap.

Leviton Decora Outlet Issues   Leviton Decora Outlet Faceplate Detail   Leviton Decora Outlet Receptacle Detail

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LeGrand Radiant: Like the Decora, the Radiant can't really compete with the clean look and high quality of the Lutron Claro.  Its design is a bit overdone and the build-quality feels quite poor.

LeGrand Radiant Outlet Review

  • Design: There are three prominent issues with the LeGrand Radiant.  First, it's recpetacle and faceplate do not sit flush, further emphasizing the two-piece construction of the design.  Next, the faceplate has a bow from the edges out towards the center of the receptacle.  It's a small detail but really brings a lot of attention to the outlet (something we believe should disappear).   Finally, like the Adorne, the receptacle has a prominent company logo featured on it.  Again, we do not want to see logos in our homes!  That alone is enough to sink the design!
  • Finish: The Radiant finishes are nicer than the Adorne, but still leave a bit to be desired.  It's fairly consistent between faceplate and receptacle, although the difference in plane and bow of the faceplate make them appear different at an angle.  I'd call the finish more of a satin, it's got a light pebble to it that's nice.
  • Build-Quality: The build quality of the Radiant is probably it's biggest downside.  The faceplate connection is very flimsy, and although the plastic feels and looks nicer than the Adorne, it does not feel secure.  This is primarily due to the screw-less faceplate mounting, which clips into a super thin plastic backing.  The faceplate rattles on the receptacle and seems apt to fail sooner than the outlets above due to the thin plastic backing.

LeGrand Radiant Review   LeGrand Radiant Faceplate Detail

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When the FLUSHTEK system was in early development, we briefly considered all three of the outlets listed above.  Viewing them online, and comparing costs, they each appear as if they could work well in a flush application. However, there's no substitute for holding the object in your hand and really getting a feel for each product's nuance.  As you can see from our in-depth review above, the Lutron Claro suite is clearly superior in person. Not only that, we feel that the extra few dollars is a small price to pay for the superior design, finish, and build-quality.  And now, thanks to the FLUSHTEK System, you can seamlessly integrate it with baseboards, trim, and cabinetry throughout your projects.  Have a look at our How it Work Page to see just how easy it is to bring your projects up to the next level.  Thanks for reading!!!
August 2022 Update:
Due to the popularity of this post, we've been working on a follow up that features a few other outlet brands.  In addition, we've found the below videos from Everyday Home Repairs to be super helpful in understanding the internals of these different brands.  Check out some of his videos below:

2 comments

  • Thanks for the heads up Roger! We’ve gone ahead and fixed the errors : )

    Flushtek Support
  • Hi Flushtek !

    Have one more editor review your spelling and editing: alot ? apprenent ?

    best -

    Roger tryhotwire.com

    Roger Newill

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