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Most Common Causes Of A Burnt or Melted Outlet

A melted outlet is a sign that you have an electrical issue that needs to be resolved as quickly as possible. Until you know what caused it you should turn the circuit off.

It’s a good idea to contact your Sydney electrician and get them to check out the circuit to identify the issue. They will then be able to replace the socket and any other wiring that is needed to get your appliances working again.


The most common reason for a socket melting or burning out is because it has been overloaded. Australian electrical circuits are radial, not ring main. In general, every circuit is designed to take eight sockets, although there should be dedicated circuits for specific appliances, such as heaters and stoves.

If you have eight sockets and half of them are in use and another one has a splitter then you can easily plug in too many appliances.

If this happens, the power coming through the wires will be more than it should be. This creates excessive heat in the wire. It can melt the outer protective cover and leave the electrical wire exposed.

The heat that causes the protection to melt can cause damage to the socket, melting it and creating a distinctive aroma. But, the exposed wires can also spark against each other. This creates more heat and causes a short circuit. This should be enough to trip the breaker and shut down the power to the circuit. It is also likely to melt the outlet.

It should be noted that a circuit breaker can trip without a melted socket and without the circuit being overloaded. In this case, you’ll need to check the appliances, one of them may be faulty and be causing the breaker to trip.

Bad Wiring

If the circuit hasn’t been overloaded then the most probable cause of the melted outlet is bad wiring. This can be due to age and natural deterioration of the protective sheath. Or, it can be a result of the socket being pulled roughly and the wires inside being damaged.

This will cause short circuits, heat, and potentially melt the outlet.

It is also possible that the wiring is old and simply too small to handle the current demands of modern homes.

Dealing With A Melted Socket

Once you understand what caused the melted socket it is easy to see that the socket will need to be replaced. The question is whether the wiring also needs to be replaced. This will depend on whether the wiring has been damaged by something or is simply old and perished.

If it needs repairing your electrician will look at all the wiring in your home to ensure it is an isolated case and not time to replace all your wiring.

You should note that while changing the outlet can seem like a simple task, this may not solve the issue. That’s why it is better to get the professionals to look at and deal with the issue for you.

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