Sparking Receptacle Cover

What may cause the cover to spark when switch is turned on?



What exactly is sparking? The plate to the center screw?

Yes, Pete. Thanks.

I would pull out the receptacle and check both it and the box for a good ground.

Does this only happen with something plugged in?
What switch are you referring to?
Do any breakers or GFIs trip?

Hi Pete,

Sorry, been a long inspection day for a change. :shock:

The hard to see white area on the plate is the on -off toggle. When the switch is turned off, a spark can be seen behind the swich. The home is old with no GFCI’s and does not trip any breakers. Nothing has to be plugged in order for this to occur. New 200 amp service panel looked good.

That sounds normal to me,since it is mechanical ,though if exessive it may need to be changed.

Normal for the plate to arc to the center screw ???

Normal for there to be a small spark, but to the screw may be an optical illusion

Recommend sparky for the spark if unusual, but I bet it is just an old switch that is wearing out.

If you look at a switch with the plate off you can often see a spark from the broken physical contact of the switch.
By nature it will produce an arc.

I’d hope not, I bet the receptacle was loose and the live was contacting with the J box.



I see the switch now.

I’ll make a prediction: The switch does not control the receptacle. I bet it controls something else, like a disposal, and the arc spark seen is typical of any switch made or broken under load.