If you tried to charge your devices and you noticed that the electrical outlet is not working, the solution might be easier than you think. There are several solutions to fix the outlet without calling a professional electrician, but you might do so at any time if you are not comfortable fixing it by yourself. Let’s check out the next 6 possible solutions if your electrical outlet isn’t working!
1. Test the Outlet
In most cases, there is a high chance that the outlet still works, but your charger or device might be broken. To eliminate this cause, try to plug in something different in the outlet. If it works, it might be the right time to replace the broken charger or device instead of calling an electrician.
2. Check the Circuit Breaker
The circuit panel is often located in the basement or a utility room and this might be the solution to fix your outlet. Circuit breakers happen to trip in order to prevent other hazards if they detect unintended electric currents. The first step is to check the other outlets in your home – if they are also not working, then check the circuit breaker.
When it trips, you will notice that the lever is either in “off” position on the panel or it is in the middle. If it tripped, firstly unplug all the appliances you have. The cause of the trip might be that you plugged in too many devices at the same time. Switch the circuit lever back on and see if the outlet works.
3. Reset the Outlet
Some outlets are GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupter), especially if they are placed in the bathroom, kitchen, laundry room, or outdoor. If this is the case, you will find a test or reset button between the two plugs. Simply press the reset button after you unplugged all appliances or devices from the outlet.
4. Short Circuits
If you flipped the circuit breaker on, but then it flipped back off immediately, it means that you have a short circuit somewhere along the electric setup. This can be caused by accidental touch between wires and can be extremely dangerous as they may lead to a fire. In this case, the only thing you should do is call a professional electrician.
5. Loose Wires
Have you noticed any off signals before the outlet stopped working? Outlets sometimes require new wiring and you can notice a buzzing sound, flickering lights, burnt marks or a burnt smell coming from the outlet, among others, case in which these should be replaced by a professional.
However, the outlet may also stop working because wires are loose. You can check the wires by yourself. Firstly, turn the breaker off. Unscrew the faceplate using a screwdriver and the screws on the outlet, detaching the outlet a few inches from the wall so you can check the wires.
The wires should be securely fastened underneath the outlet screws. If any of them are loose, you can reposition the wires to their corresponding screws and tighten them.
6. Faulty Outlet
The outlet might be faulty, so you should buy a new one to replace it. Make sure the breaker switch is turned off, remove the outlet cover and disconnect all the wires using a screwdriver. Install the new outlet and connect all wires: the black wire to the gold screw on the side of the outlet, the green or wire copper goes to the bottom, and the white wire must be connected to the silver screw on the remaining side.
All in all, there are multiple causes that can make your outlet stop functioning. If you followed the steps above and you could not fix the problem, you should consider calling a professional.