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What to Do if an Electrical Outlet is Smoking 

June 3, 2024

Electric plug on fire

Discovering a smoking electrical outlet can be a frightening and urgent issue, indicating a potential danger within your electrical system. Such incidents require quick and effective actions to ensure the safety of your home and its inhabitants. Chesapeake Electric is here to guide you through the crucial steps to take in the event that you notice an outlet emitting smoke. 

These steps will help you manage the situation safely and prevent the problem from escalating into a more serious and hazardous condition. Follow this comprehensive guide to understand what immediate actions are necessary when faced with a smoking electrical outlet.

Turn off the Power

The first and most critical step is to turn off the power to the affected area. Locate your circuit breaker and switch off the breaker that controls the part of your home where the smoking outlet is located. This will help prevent further damage or an electrical fire.

Unplug All Devices

Once the power is off, safely unplug any appliances or devices that are connected to the smoking outlet. Do this carefully to avoid any contact with the outlet itself, as it might still pose a risk of shock or burns.

Avoid Water

It might be instinctive to use water to douse a smoking outlet, but this can lead to electrocution or further electrical damage. Water is a conductor of electricity, and introducing water into an electrical fire can escalate the situation.

Assess the Situation

After the immediate danger has been mitigated, assess the situation to determine if the smoking has stopped. Look for visible signs of damage to the outlet such as blackening or melting. Smell the area for any burning odors that persist after the outlet has stopped smoking.

Ventilate the Area

Open windows or doors near the affected area to help ventilate any smoke out of your home. This not only clears the smoke but also helps reduce the risk of smoke inhalation, which can be harmful to your health.

Do Not Use the Outlet

Even if the outlet seems to have stopped smoking and appears undamaged, do not use it again until it has been inspected by a qualified electrician. Continuing to use a potentially faulty outlet can result in further damage or fire.

Contact a Professional Electrician

This is where Chesapeake Electric comes in. Contact a professional to inspect the smoking outlet as well as your home’s entire electrical system. An expert can determine the cause of the issue, whether it’s due to faulty wiring, an overloaded circuit, or an aging electrical system.

A smoking electrical outlet is a serious warning sign of potential electrical failure or fire. If you encounter this issue, the safest approach is to follow the steps outlined above and contact a professional immediately. For residents in Maryland, Chesapeake Electric is your go-to expert for all electrical needs. Our team of licensed electricians can ensure your electrical systems are safe, efficient, and up to code.

Electrical Services in Maryland

Don’t wait for electrical issues to escalate. Contact Chesapeake Electric today to schedule an inspection or for emergency electrical services. We’re here to keep your home and family safe from electrical hazards.