When smoking or burning occurs on an electrical fixture like a light socket or an outlet, the homeowner should check whether he can safely turn off power in the house, and do so if it is possible. Such occurrence definitely merits a call to the local fire department because this is an urgent situation and may cause electrical fire. Moreover, this presents an electrical shock hazard that could be dangerous, if not fatal for anyone who can come into contact with the said fixtures.
Usually after the fire department has ruled out fire trouble in your home, they will advise you to seek the help of a professional electrician to diagnose and repair the problem. Such advice should be immediately heeded for the safety of everyone in your household.
In one of their web posts, home design website Hunker.com explained possible reasons for an electrical outlet to smoke.
“The most immediate cause of an electrical outlet smoking is a short circuit generating heat. This means something within the outlet is connecting negative and positive parts of the socket. As with any time an electrical outlet is smoking, this is a fire hazard. If the outlet has seen frequent use, or has old appliances plugged into it, debris from electrical plugs may have caught within the outlet.” The continuation of the explanation can be found here. https://www.hunker.com/12223714/electrical-outlet-smoke-causes
Family and home safety website Safebee.com meanwhile reminded its readers that sparking and smoking electrical fixtures should always be treated as a fire hazard and an emergency and should never be shrugged off.
“This is never a good sign. How you deal with it depends on where it’s coming from. If a breaker panel, fuse box or outlet is sparking, get an electrician in ASAP. But a sparking appliance may mean that the fixture itself is damaged, in which case you should call an appliance repairperson. He can test the appliance and usually the outlet that powers it as well.”
Smoking receptacles and fixtures should never be ignored. It is a sign of immediate trouble that should be dealt with immediately.
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