What Makes Electrical Outlets Spark?

When you plug an appliance into an electrical outlet in your home, it may spark for a brief moment. In most cases, this is completely normal, and the sparking will stop as soon as the electrons that are moving through your home’s electrical wiring start flowing into the appliance. However, you should call a residential electrician near Columbus if this sparking takes place on a regular basis or if you notice sparks near an electrical outlet when nothing is plugged into it, as this could indicate a serious problem. Here are some reasons your electrical outlet might be sparking.

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Your electrical outlet has a short circuit.

If your electrical outlet is subjected to heat for a long period of time as a result of something that’s plugged into it, the heat could potentially melt the insulation that covers your outlet’s electrical wiring. This will expose your wiring and increase the chances of the wiring sparking and causing a fire. Without insulation, the electrons in your home’s electrical system will be able to leave the wiring, which will cause sparks to fly. You should have electrical work done right away if you notice that an electrical outlet or the wall surrounding it feels warm.

Your electrical outlet has been exposed to water.

Electricity and water do not mix, so you should replace an electrical outlet immediately if it is ever exposed to water. Water can cause your electrical wiring to short out and, when that happens, your outlet will often start to spark. In addition to replacing outlets that have been exposed to water, you should install electrical outlets equipped with ground fault circuit interrupters near sinks in kitchens and bathrooms. They will shut outlets off if they are ever exposed to water.

Your electrical outlet is old and worn out.

Over time, the electrical wiring in your home’s outlets will begin to wear out. The connections inside of them will become loose, and they will likely short circuit simply because of their age. An electrician can help you replace old electrical outlets to reduce the risk associated with using them.