Boy
Lv 4
Boy asked in Home & GardenMaintenance & Repairs · 2 months ago

What is wrong with my wall socket?

Just finally pulled a table out of the way to see the wall socket my heater had been plugged into all winter.

What the heck is wrong with it?

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10 Answers

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  • 2 months ago
    Favorite Answer

    This is a common occurrence. Heaters draw a lot of power and the connection inside the outlet where the blades slide in are sometimes not that good. So they develop heat and it burns the outlet.

    You need to replace that outlet now as the connections are in bad shape. Space heaters tend to test the outlet and wiring connections and will show up weak points.

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  • 2 months ago

    that circuit get overloaded ,,more current drawn than it would handle,that socket possibly also the wire along that line and back to the circuit breaker are damaged,,sometimes,until you get an electrician out there,, you might feather with fine grit sandpaper the prongs of the heater..test another low current drawing appliance first,a short can explode in the socket, and poof you got a 911 situation,,best have an electrician scope it out

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  • hart
    Lv 6
    2 months ago

    loose contact,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

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  • 2 months ago

    The discoloration is caused by excessive heat on the hot terminal. A loose connection due to metal fatigue causes a friction point that generates heat. Shut the power off, remove the cover plate. Then remove the top and bottom screws holding the outlet to the box. Pull the outlet away from the wall; there should be 6" of wire so you can do this. Back the screws out and then reattach to a new 3-wire outlet. Note that your existing outlet has been installed upside-down. The ground lug (green wire) always goes to the bottom so the short slot is on the right. Next, take a emery board (nail file) and go over the plug prongs of your heater cord so the tarnish is removed. You want a tight fitting mate with low resistance. File until you see bright brass plug prongs.  

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  • Droopy
    Lv 5
    2 months ago

    They outlet was worn out.  Causing the blades on the plug to not make good connection in outlet. With the amps the heater pulled there was lot of arcing an heat.  That plug needs to be replaced check the plug on heater to

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  • 2 months ago

    In the UK, we'd call it "pin fizz".

    The contact pins on the flex were loosely seated in the outlet, resulting in poor contact and arcing/sparking/heating

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  • Barry
    Lv 5
    2 months ago

    It's buggered. Fit a new one. Don't forget to turn off the power first.

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  • Mark
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    It looks like the contract "grippers" in the outlet were not as tight as they should be, and the electricity "arced" between the microgap, in essence creating a minifurnace in the socket.  Replace the socket.  (They're REALLY cheap, and if you have basic skills, you can even do the job yourself.  Just plus a lamp into the lower receptacle, turn it on, and flip switches in your circuit breaker until the lamp turns off, which means there is no power going to that socket.  Remove, and replace the whole thing.  I still wouldn't stand in a puddle with wet hands, though.  (That might sound sarcastic, but there are actually people who do these things ON PURPOSE - Vuvu knows why.)

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  • 2 months ago

    Nothing at all. Looks perfectly OK to me. The top one has a bit of discolouration, though. Perhaps you want to put a bit of white paint, or something, over it just to make it look nice.

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  • 2 months ago

    The contacts inside the socket are worn and the current drawn by the heater caused the area to get hot and burn.  You were lucky it didn't burn the place down.  Get an electrician to fit a new socket and check out the wiring.

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