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Space heater and electrical outlet issues

DBReedDBReed Registered User regular
edited January 2011 in Help / Advice Forum
I had a Holmes space heater plugged into the outlet in our bedroom. A couple of days ago, I heard a buzzing sound by the heater. I went over to investigate, and the sound was coming from the plug. I turned off the heater and unplugged it, and the plug had some dark spots on it. It looked like it had been overheating.

I'm not sure if this is an issue with the heater or with the outlet. Everything else I've plugged into that outlet doesn't make the same sound. However, everything that I plug in fits loosely, and I've read online that means the outlet is worn out, which could lead to appliances overheating. So should I replace the heater, or contact my landlord and have him check out the outlet?

DBReed on

Posts

  • RuckusRuckus Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    DBReed wrote: »
    I had a Holmes space heater plugged into the outlet in our bedroom. A couple of days ago, I heard a buzzing sound by the heater. I went over to investigate, and the sound was coming from the plug. I turned off the heater and unplugged it, and the plug had some dark spots on it. It looked like it had been overheating.

    I'm not sure if this is an issue with the heater or with the outlet. Everything else I've plugged into that outlet doesn't make the same sound. However, everything that I plug in fits loosely, and I've read online that means the outlet is worn out, which could lead to appliances overheating. So should I replace the heater, or contact my landlord and have him check out the outlet?

    Outlet, definitely. Outlets have little metal contacts in them that are supposed to press in to either side of the blades/prongs to create a solid connection for the electricity to transit. If those contacts get worn out or loose, they won't make a good contact. Poor contact = resistance and arcing, and additional resistance means that any device has to draw extra power just to perform normally.

    A new duplex outlet only costs a few bucks anyway, and it's something a lot of landlords would probably do themselves (turn off breaker, remove old outlet, install new outlet, turn on breaker).

    Ruckus on
  • DBReedDBReed Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Awesome, thanks for the advice!

    DBReed on
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