why does an electrical outlet spark when plugging in

Why Does an Electrical Outlet Spark When You Plug In An Appliance?

Fireworks may look amazing up in the sky, but it’s definitely going to send you in panic mode if you see sparks flying out of your electrical outlets! These may not look like it can cause a huge amount of damage, but there might be a need to look into it. In this article, let’s list down some of the most common reasons why you see a spark when you plug something into an electrical socket.

Are All Sparking Incidents Cause For Worry?

Before we get into the list of reasons, let’s get one thing straight: An electrical outlet sparking is a pretty common occurrence that (in most cases) is considered normal.

Electrical current runs continuously through your home electrical system, from the main panel to the wires, fixtures, and outlets, and back. The moment you plug in an appliance into the socket, a portion of the electricity gets transferred to the plugged device. The transfer is fast and may result in a visible spark caused by static electricity.

Reasons for Electrical Outlet Spark

Having said that, there are some cases wherein the spark may be an indication of a more serious electrical issue. Here are some potential reasons behind electrical outlet sparking:


When water seeps into an electrical outlet, it may cause a spark as soon as you plug in an appliance. Check the source of the moisture entry – it may be an accidental spillage or a roof leak.

If you have a ground fault interrupter outlet, the power may automatically get shut down as a safety mechanism.

Old system

Electrical systems that have been in existence for decades contain wires and outlets that may have deteriorated over time. Loose connections or worn out wires may result in a short circuit and lead to an electrical spark.

Short circuit

As its name implies, this occurrence involves a potential shortcut in the electrical current. Short-circuiting is one of the leading causes of electrical outlet spark. It is something that you need to address immediately.

Worried About Electrical Outlet Spark at Home?

If your power outlets have any of the electrical spark mentioned above, give us a call at Wire Craft Electric.

We can help you fix the issue as soon as possible. An electrical spark may be common. Still take note that it may also be telling you about an undiscovered problem in your electrical system.