Why is My Electrical Outlet Sparking?

It’s not uncommon to notice a small spark when you plug something into the electrical outlet, especially if it’s a large appliance. However, if the sparks from your electrical outlet are starting to worry you, call our electrical contractors as soon as possible. We’ll be able to find the source of the problem and give you a quote for electrical repair.

Continue reading to learn why your electrical outlet could be sparking. For more information, don’t hesitate to call our local electricians.

Normal (Small) Sparks

The electricity in your home constantly runs along available circuits before returning to the main grid. However, when you plug something into the wall outlet, you may see a slight spark jump from the outlet to the plug.

While small sparks are normal from time to time, you should call a residential electrician if the problem persists. An electric outlet that sparks all the time could be a sign of a larger problem, such as water damage or short circuits. In this scenario, we would need to evaluate the condition of your system before determining what electrical services are needed.

Overloaded Circuits

The circuit breaker is designed to prevent circuits from overloading from too much electricity, reducing your risk for fire. When you demand more electricity from a circuit than what is considered safe, the circuit breaker trips and automatically shuts off the power for your home. While this may seem like an inconvenience, the circuit breaker serves an important purpose by preventing fire.

Have you recently plugged in a new household appliance? For example, the new fridge you installed in your finished basement could be overloading the circuit. Since the electrical load is near maximum capacity, the circuit breaker trips when you plug in another appliance like a lamp or hair dryer.

It’s important to understand that the electricity that powers your home carries heat. This means that too much electricity running through your system will eventually build up heat in the wall outlet, melting important insulation covering wires. Once electrical wires are exposed, you run the risk of burning down your house.

If you suspect you have a short circuiting outlet, call our emergency electrician as soon as possible. Our 24 hour electrician will be able to resolve the issue and make your electrical system safe again.

Old Age

If your house is pretty old, you might want to have one of our residential electricians inspect your outlets. Over time, electrical outlets will eventually wear out and increase your risk of short circuits. Fortunately, our electrical contractors will be able to help you with replacing outlets so you can maintain a safe home.

We highly recommend child proof outlets (also called tamper resistant outlets) because they have spring-loaded cover plates that prevent a child from being able to stick an object into one of the receptacle’s contact points. A tamper resistant outlet looks just like other outlets, except they protect children from electrical shock injury.

Our Lowell electricians are able to inspect outlets and troubleshoot issues so you can avoid short circuits and other electrical problems. To schedule your quote for replacing outlets, call Flat River Electric at (616) 987-0596.

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Google Reviews

carol webb
carol webb

5 out of 5 stars

posted 8 months ago

Mike and his apprentice promptly took care of my electrical issue. They were professional and polite. Although they were very busy with more lucrative projects, they made time to fix my issue.They did not make me wait days although they could have. I will call them again if needed.

Philip Gerhardt
Philip Gerhardt

5 out of 5 stars

posted 7 months ago

I had a car charger installed by Mike from Flat River Electric. Mike and Heather both worked to accommodate my schedule, from doing a walk through after business hours to an early project start time to minimize time off of work.

Mike was extremely friendly and professional during the process, and even remembered my home from a project he had done four years earlier. To install the new breaker and run the line, Mike went out of his way to avoid cutting into my ceiling. As a result, the room with the breaker panel looks exactly the same as it did before, and the project was finished under the quoted price.

I couldn’t be happier with the work that Flat River Electric did. Everything was done on time, under budget, and looks great. This was my second time using Flat River Electric, and I won’t hesitate to call them if I need a third.

Chris Thomas
Chris Thomas

5 out of 5 stars

posted 9 months ago

We recently used Mike and his team to replace some outlets in our home and replace all of our smoke detectors. They were in and out very quickly and did a great job. Very easy to work with. I would highly recommend them.