How to Fix a Burnt Wall Outlet

burnt wall outlet

Having a burnt wall outlet poses a range of concerns: from the inconvenience of not being able to access electricity in that particular area of your home, to the worry of whether it poses a fire hazard. You need to take care of it as soon as possible.

But is this one of those issues you can troubleshoot on your own, or should you call an electrician? And what caused the outlet to burn in the first place?

The first thing to do when you notice a burnt outlet is take immediate action. No matter how busy you are, putting it on the back burner could have dire consequences, since the outlet is now a fire hazard.

What Causes Burnt Wall Outlets?

Burnt outlets occur either because of overloaded circuits or faulty wiring (e.g. a wire may have become loose or is worn out from normal wear and tear).

How to Troubleshoot a Burnt Wall Outlet

Before getting started, gather the tools you’ll need. These materials include:

  • Screwdriver
  • Non-contact voltage tester (available at hardware stores and big box stores)
  • Wire strippers
  • Flashlight (if the room is dark due to the burnt outlet)
  • New outlet

Step 1. Unplug any power cord from the outlet and shut off power at the breaker.

Step 2. If the outlet is connected to a light switch, set the switch to “On” before testing the outlet.

Step 3. Use a voltage tester to determine whether there’s an electric current in the socket. Do this by placing the tip of the tester against the slits in the outlet.

Step 4. If there is no electric current detected by the tester, unscrew the faceplate on the outlet.

Step 5. Check for visibly burnt wires. If you see burnt wires, remove them with the wire strippers.

Step 6. Install the new outlet. The black wire goes next to the gold terminal. The white wire is inserted into the silver terminal. The third wire (which could vary in color) goes into the green terminal.

Step 7. Screw in the new outlet.

Climate Design Can Help

At Climate Design, we provide HVAC and electrical services all over Tampa Bay: Clearwater, Largo, Palm Harbor, South Tampa, St. Pete Beach, Eastlake, Tarpon Springs, Safety Harbor, St. Petersburg, Sarasota, Bradenton, Lakewood Ranch, Palmetto, and New Port Richey.

If you’re having electrical or HVAC issues, we can help! Call us 24/7.

Call (888) 572-7245 to Schedule Your Appointment