Plug pin melted into wall socket

67
Found 24th Apr
One of the pins is stuck after melting into the wall socket.

I just unplugged what was plugged into that socket after a few weeks and this has happened.

I had noticed my hair dryer's plug was very hot when I unplugged it from the same set of sockets.

What has happened and how do I get the pin safely out now? Thanks in advance.
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In all honesty; you don't. Something is DANGEROUSLY wrong.

If the hairdryer plug gets hot an another socket, replace the hair dryer and replace the socket

If the hairdryer plug does not gets hot an another socket, replace the socket

Or call an electrician.
For starters what pin is stuck?

before you do anything isolate the supply. Remove the pin and or the whole wall plate with a view to replace it.

What fuse was in the hair dryer?

what power rating is the dryer?
Edited by: "Dannyrobbo" 24th Apr
It wasn't the hairdryer the problem. It's the pin of a fan heater's plug that has melted. The bottom left pin is the one that's melted. The hairdryer's plug seems fine plugged into other sockets.

The fan heater itself worked fine before plugged into different sockets in the house.

I don't intend to use the faulty sockets again.

I just want to take the pin out if possible. I would replace the socket myself but it seems it requires electrical knowledge I don't have. Or is it easy to do?
Edited by: "hearts22" 24th Apr
hearts2211 m ago

It wasn't the hairdryer the problem. It's the pin of a fan heater's plug …It wasn't the hairdryer the problem. It's the pin of a fan heater's plug that has melted. The bottom left pin is the one that's melted. The hairdryer's plug seems fine plugged into other sockets. The fan heater itself worked fine before plugged into different sockets in the house. I don't intend to use the faulty sockets again.I just want to take the pin out if possible. I would replace the socket myself but it seems it requires electrical knowledge I don't have. Or is it easy to do?


If you have no knowledge of doing such a task then DONT. Get someone in to do the work for you
Bin the fan heater and get an electrician or capable friend to replace the socket . The socket may be OK but best not to take chances . The pin will probably be in the socket as the plastic on the plug melted due to the heater drawing too much current (should have blown the fuse though) . Was a wire still not attached to the offending pin ? The wire itself should not have melted even if the insulation and plug body did .
rogparki9 m ago

Bin the fan heater and get an electrician or capable friend to replace the …Bin the fan heater and get an electrician or capable friend to replace the socket . The socket may be OK but best not to take chances . The pin will probably be in the socket as the plastic on the plug melted due to the heater drawing too much current (should have blown the fuse though) . Was a wire still not attached to the offending pin ? The wire itself should not have melted even if the insulation and plug body did .


I'm not too sure why you would say bin the fan heater. Everything points towards a faulty socket. A new plug on the fan heater is a relatively simple job.


OP If you can isolate the electricity to the socket I would just suggest replacing the socket if you have the confidence. Take a photo of the wiring and replicate it with the replacement socket. If you haven't got the confidence then get an electrician around or a capable friend.
I asked my partner if he can do it. He said he's gonna ask for advice at work to his colleagues who do electrician stuff.


Basically, I went to unplug the heater as it's warmer now and I don't need it and couldn't pull the plug out. I pulled hard and the pin remained in. There's burning on the plug itself and the plate. I don't see wires exposed. The whole pin came off the plug.
Edited by: "hearts22" 24th Apr
rogparki3 m ago

The only way a pin would come loose from the plug is if the plug itself …The only way a pin would come loose from the plug is if the plug itself melted thereby releasing the pin . Indicating there is a problem in the plug - loose wire ,incorrect fuse etc . You aint going to pull a pin out of a healthy plug without a really big set of pliers - try it .


Yes, but then when I used the socket on the same plate with a hairdryer it makes the plug of that get hot too. I did notice but stupidly just thought it was because I was using the hairdryer on the hottest setting.

If I use the hairdryer upstairs in the bedroom it doesn't do that.

It seems to me the sockets are both faulty on that plate. Maybe the fan heater caused the problem.
rogparki6 m ago

The only way a pin would come loose from the plug is if the plug itself …The only way a pin would come loose from the plug is if the plug itself melted thereby releasing the pin . Indicating there is a problem in the plug and/or the heater - loose wire ,incorrect fuse etc . You aint going to pull a pin out of a healthy plug without a really big set of pliers - try it .


The question is why did the plug melt? It's either a faulty socket or a faulty product (I suppose it is possible, but unlikely to be both). The OP has already indicated that she noticed an unusually warm plug on another appliance utilising the same socket. That to me would indicate a faulty socket rather than a faulty appliance.
Edited by: "OllieSt" 24th Apr
If you're in rented accommodation, inform the landlord. They need to get it seen to by a qualified electrician. Changing a socket is easy enough but don't do it if you are renting
Pic of the damage: 33688908-QFbXo.jpg
hearts2211 m ago

Pic of the damage: [Image]


Don't bother attempt to touch nor remove the pin. That crack emrging upwards from the subject pin means the entire socket must be isolated / replaced immediately if not sooner. Obvsly all replacement work to be done with supply isolated.
As others have said - don't use this socket until you can get it replaced. Only let someone who 100% knows what they are doing replace the socket - it is pretty staightforward to change but potentially fatal if it is done wrong.

As to cause - a loose wire in either the plug or socket could cause arcing and when on a considerable load this can generate some significant heat. The fault looks to have been on the NEUTRAL (EDIT) wire (black or blue wire). I suggest this video is what is likely happened.....
Edited by: "Van1973" 24th Apr
OllieSt54 m ago

I'm not too sure why you would say bin the fan heater. Everything points …I'm not too sure why you would say bin the fan heater. Everything points towards a faulty socket. A new plug on the fan heater is a relatively simple job.OP If you can isolate the electricity to the socket I would just suggest replacing the socket if you have the confidence. Take a photo of the wiring and replicate it with the replacement socket. If you haven't got the confidence then get an electrician around or a capable friend.



Not sure that advice is correct. A socket draws no load and the issue would be present on anything plugged in and given the socket is always live it would be in fault always it just wouldn’t fail this way.

Two high powered resistive loads would likely make the plug warm anyway so you can’t say for sure the hairdryer isn’t operating normally on the socket.

you can’t say for sure it’s the socket and I’d be more inclined to say the resistive fan heater drawing too much current through an under specified plug top and cable, or lose connection.

dont take the pin out, isolate and replace the socket. If replacement is not possible right now, isolate the mains and you may need to put something into the earth connection first to draw back the covers for live and neutral that may make it lodge in there, use some pliers to remove.

it has to be isolated though to be safe don’t just yank it out,
Edited by: "Dannyrobbo" 24th Apr
Thanks for the replies.

If I was to replace it I'd turn the electricity off completely in the house first. Then I would be safe to touch it, right?

The hairdryer's plug would get hot. Not warm. Like burning hot.
Edited by: "hearts22" 24th Apr
hearts227 m ago

Thanks for the replies. If I was to replace it I'd turn the electricity …Thanks for the replies. If I was to replace it I'd turn the electricity off completely in the house first. Then I would be safe to touch it, right?The hairdryer's plug would get hot. Not warm. Like burning hot.


Yes, you would be safe to touch it but please don't if you're not 100% confident in what you're doing.
You must know someone who is qualified to help you out. As someone else has said I'm quite confident that the problem lies with your heater drawing too many amps through an unsuitable socket, or the heater has a wiring fault in the plug.
Edited by: "Dyslexic_Dog" 24th Apr
hearts227 m ago

Thanks for the replies. If I was to replace it I'd turn the electricity …Thanks for the replies. If I was to replace it I'd turn the electricity off completely in the house first. Then I would be safe to touch it, right?

Take a look at your fuse box. You may be able to isolate just the upstairs sockets rather than turn the leccy right off.
When checking sockets make sure after you turn off the electricity to check that the socket is actual off by plugging something into the other side. Don't guess what ring the socket is getting its power from as someone might of wired it off the light circuit or from another level. Don't assume everyone does stuff by the book.

Sockets age and suffer from wear and tear as well so a socket that has frequent use will fail quicker. That socket could be 20 years plus. I've just replaced the sockets in my kitchen. On the cooker one the supply neutral was loose and the load live secure screw fell out which makes me glad I replaced the lot.
Don't get someone in or an electrician.Get a qualified electrician.
Edited by: "AW0079" 24th Apr
For the sake of safety and not burning your home down. Get the socket replaced by a sparky. That way you can get the ring main checked for any possible issues.
Bin the heater and consider the same with the hair dryer.
Why, either could have been drawing an abnormal load and or resisting load, resulting in heat build up.
Put it down as a close shave and move on, with professional repairs. Normally I’d say replace the socket after turning off the power at the fuse/RCD. In this case it may even need checked as that damage should have tripped something. Get it checked.
hearts221 h, 10 m ago

Thanks for the replies. If I was to replace it I'd turn the electricity …Thanks for the replies. If I was to replace it I'd turn the electricity off completely in the house first. Then I would be safe to touch it, right?The hairdryer's plug would get hot. Not warm. Like burning hot.



Honestly, I've never seen damage like that and would not trust any part of the electrics. Strongly suggest an electrician. If you have an electrical fire, your insurers may not be impressed
Just a thought, if you're going to get an electrician in to replace the socket which I would strongly recommend, get them to check the heater and hair dryer before throwing anything away.
I'm leaning towards a faulty fuse which has overheated and therefore melted the plugtop, releasing the pin when the plug top was removed...?
If not, then a loose live supply wire in the socket....

Can only echo what others have said though, when you have to ask how easy it is to replace a socket, that normally means you're not competent to do it, hopefully your partners workmates come through.

Quite alarming though that you've continued to use that socket whilst that live pin was exposed, switched off or not.......
Edited by: "andynicol" 24th Apr
andynicol13 m ago

I'm leaning towards a faulty fuse which has overheated and therefore …I'm leaning towards a faulty fuse which has overheated and therefore melted the plugtop, releasing the pin when the plug top was removed...?If not, then a loose live supply wire in the socket....Can only echo what others have said though, when you have to ask how easy it is to replace a socket, that normally means you're not competent to do it, hopefully your partners workmates come through.Quite alarming though that you've continued to use that socket whilst that live pin was exposed, switched off or not.......


Well the heater was plugged in all the time and I just switched off the socket when I wasn't using it. I couldn't have known the pin had melted until today when I tried to unplug it. It was still working though before I tried to unplug it

We are renting and we have to move out by August as our landlord is selling this house and his own house to move somewhere else so he'll get the house checked then I guess.

He didn't want to replace the washing machine when it broke at the beginning of the year and we are also without a freezer as that one broke too and no point telling him as he won't replace appliances now that he's gonna sell. All the stuff in the house is second hand and he'll just throw away furniture etc.

No problems anywhere else and I am obviously not gonna use that socket again even if we fix it.

I believe it was the heater that maybe had a loose wire in the plug.


The socket wasn't even used often by the way.
Edited by: "hearts22" 24th Apr
hearts225 m ago

Well the heater was plugged in all the time and I just switched off the …Well the heater was plugged in all the time and I just switched off the socket when I wasn't using it. I couldn't have known the pin had melted until today when I tried to unplug it. It was still working though before I tried to unplug it We are renting and we have to move out by August as our landlord is selling the this house and his own house to move somewhere else so he'll get the house checked then I guess. He didn't want to replace the washing machine when it broke at the beginning of the year and we are also without a freezer as that one broke too and no point telling him as he won't replace appliances now that he's gonna sell. All the stuff in the house is second hand and he'll just throw away furniture etc. No problems anywhere else and I am obviously not gonna use that socket again even if we fix it. I believe it was the heater that maybe had a loose wire in the plug. The socket wasn't even used often by the way.


Renting means get the landlord to fix it it is their responsibility especially since you don’t know what you are doing
Edited by: "eslick" 24th Apr
eslick3 m ago

Renting means get the landlord to fix it it is their responsibility …Renting means get the landlord to fix it it is their responsibility especially since you don’t know what you are doing


Well I'll inform him of that and see what happens. In the meantime I'll get my partner to ask why the damage didn't trip anything to his qualified electricians coworkers.
andynicol16 m ago

I'm leaning towards a faulty fuse which has overheated and therefore …I'm leaning towards a faulty fuse which has overheated and therefore melted the plugtop, releasing the pin when the plug top was removed...?If not, then a loose live supply wire in the socket....Can only echo what others have said though, when you have to ask how easy it is to replace a socket, that normally means you're not competent to do it, hopefully your partners workmates come through.Quite alarming though that you've continued to use that socket whilst that live pin was exposed....



andynicol16 m ago

I'm leaning towards a faulty fuse which has overheated and therefore …I'm leaning towards a faulty fuse which has overheated and therefore melted the plugtop, releasing the pin when the plug top was removed...?If not, then a loose live supply wire in the socket....Can only echo what others have said though, when you have to ask how easy it is to replace a socket, that normally means you're not competent to do it, hopefully your partners workmates come through.Quite alarming though that you've continued to use that socket whilst that live pin was exposed....



Apologies, I picked up that you had continued to use the socket after removing the heaters' plugtop.

I'm now thinking its a loose wire in the socket, a loose wire in the heaters plugtop wouldn't cause the hairdryers plugtop to get very hot, a loose wire in the socket would.

You need this replaced, a loose live wire is a fire hazard, whether the sockets used or not.

Your landlord needs to replace this, you should contact him/her in writing and give them 24 hours to rectify this or you will employ an electrician and deduct the amount from next months rent.
OR
Your partners workmates come good and advise or replace it for you.
hearts229 m ago

Well the heater was plugged in all the time and I just switched off the …Well the heater was plugged in all the time and I just switched off the socket when I wasn't using it. I couldn't have known the pin had melted until today when I tried to unplug it. It was still working though before I tried to unplug it We are renting and we have to move out by August as our landlord is selling this house and his own house to move somewhere else so he'll get the house checked then I guess. He didn't want to replace the washing machine when it broke at the beginning of the year and we are also without a freezer as that one broke too and no point telling him as he won't replace appliances now that he's gonna sell. All the stuff in the house is second hand and he'll just throw away furniture etc. No problems anywhere else and I am obviously not gonna use that socket again even if we fix it. I believe it was the heater that maybe had a loose wire in the plug. The socket wasn't even used often by the way.



I didn't realise it wasn't your own property. Fixtures and fittings are the landlord's responsibility especially something as dangerous as this, you should get on to him asap.
First off, if any children or pets running around isolated /disconnect or replace the socket ASAP.
If you haven't had the electrics professionally checked in the house I would do that or at least buy one of these.
33690035.jpgSocket tester

Worth getting one to check your sockets periodically (how do you know that the previous householder didn't both a replacement?).

Replacing a socket yourself is easy enough, and with one of these gadgets it should be safe enough.

It does sound like you need a proper check by a qualified electrician though.

Your landlord does have a duty of care, so he should do this as a matter of urgency.
Edited by: "mrty" 24th Apr
andynicol12 m ago

Apologies, I picked up that you had continued to use the socket after …Apologies, I picked up that you had continued to use the socket after removing the heaters' plugtop.I'm now thinking its a loose wire in the socket, a loose wire in the heaters plugtop wouldn't cause the hairdryers plugtop to get very hot, a loose wire in the socket would.You need this replaced, a loose live wire is a fire hazard, whether the sockets used or not. Your landlord needs to replace this, you should contact him/her in writing and give them 24 hours to rectify this or you will employ an electrician and deduct the amount from next months rent.ORYour partners workmates come good and advise or replace it for you.


No worries

The socket is switched off. Does that mean it can still start a fire? As you might have understood I am not very clued up about this.
mrty2 m ago

First off, if any children or pets running around isolated /disconnect or …First off, if any children or pets running around isolated /disconnect or replace the socket ASAP.If you haven't had the electrics professionally checked in the house I would do that or at least buy one of these. [Image] Socket testerWorth getting one to check your sockets periodically (how do you know that the previous householder didn't both a replacement?).Replacing a socket yourself is easy enough, and with one of these gadgets it should be safe enough.It does sound like you need a proper check by a qualified electrician though.Your landlord does have a duty of care, so he should do this as a matter of urgency.


No, children or pets.

We have been here since 2012 and I think landlord bought the property in the early 2000s. The sockets are pretty old for sure.
My guess would be either the connection to the neutral pin in the plug was lose/broken or the neutral contacts in the socket had been damaged at some point so weren't making good contact with the plug's pin.


I would not necessaraly expect that sort of fault to trip the 32 amp circuit breaker in the consumer unit or to blow the fuse in the plug.


If you do decide to do it yourself, here's a couple of diy guides to replacing a socket, but as it is rented, you really should get the landlord to sort it and not touch it yourself even if you are competent to do it.

diy.com/ide…art

wickes.co.uk/how…ket

A couple of things I would add to those guides, after you've tightened all the terminals up, is to tug on each wire to make sure they are all secured properly, and to buy a good quality socket (at very least avoid the budget ones).
Edited by: "melted" 24th Apr
eslick33 m ago

Renting means get the landlord to fix it it is their responsibility …Renting means get the landlord to fix it it is their responsibility especially since you don’t know what you are doing



Not if they consider your appliance caused the fault
The freezer and the washing machine are a different issue unless they are specified in your lease. A faulty socket is the responsibility of your landlord. It is potentially lethal
eslick2 h, 0 m ago

Renting means get the landlord to fix it it is their responsibility …Renting means get the landlord to fix it it is their responsibility especially since you don’t know what you are doing


Probably need to consider the wider context: it may be the landlord's responsibility to maintain a safe electrical system but I suspect most electricians would state the issue was most likely caused by the tenant's equipment. Dunno what the expected lifetime of an electrical wall socket is in relation to non-betterment replacement. So landlord sorts it at landlord's expense, or ( arguably appropriately) passes partial charge to tenant, or tenant employs qualified electrician and passes proof of professional rectification to landlord.
psychobitchfromhell29 m ago

The freezer and the washing machine are a different issue unless they are …The freezer and the washing machine are a different issue unless they are specified in your lease. A faulty socket is the responsibility of your landlord. It is potentially lethal


Yes. The house came furnished so they are his responsibility.
Anyway that's not the issue, like you said.

I wanted to know if the socket which has the switches set to off can stil start a fire with nothing plugged in. After reading some of the comments I got worried about that as I have to sleep tonight and don't want this worry really.

Thanks for the replies to everyone.
I had a fan heater virtually melt the plug socket, Draws so much power from the socket, I binned the fan heater. Couldn't believe how hot it was. It's very easy to change socket but probably best to leave it to a sparky if you're unsure.
hearts2220 m ago

Yes. The house came furnished so they are his responsibility. Anyway …Yes. The house came furnished so they are his responsibility. Anyway that's not the issue, like you said. I wanted to know if the socket which has the switches set to off can stil start a fire with nothing plugged in. After reading some of the comments I got worried about that as I have to sleep tonight and don't want this worry really.Thanks for the replies to everyone.


I speak as a landlord. My tenants are fabulous and I love them. They pay the rent on time and look after my house well. For me it isn't about earning money from the rental house, it just has to pay its way. The welfare of my tenants is far more important than a dodgy socket. After all, I can write it off against tax anyway.
hearts2255 m ago

Yes. The house came furnished so they are his responsibility. Anyway …Yes. The house came furnished so they are his responsibility. Anyway that's not the issue, like you said. I wanted to know if the socket which has the switches set to off can stil start a fire with nothing plugged in. After reading some of the comments I got worried about that as I have to sleep tonight and don't want this worry really.Thanks for the replies to everyone.


Without wishing to alarm you, yes the socket could still cause a fire without having anything plugged into it, see if you can find the rcd that controls the supply to the socket and turn it off then get a qualified electrician to check it out, be that your partners work colleagues or your landlords electrician. It's your safety at the end of the day.
It’s incredible how landlords believe they can get away with not renewing their electrics and gas certificates on a regular basis and provide tenancy to people knowing that they will go to jail if anyone suffers serious injury. Your landlord should be doing all they can to protect you once you informed them of a burnt mains socket with a pin still attached. Hell I’d be round there within an hour to check you are safe. The appliance is obviously faulty but the mains electricity has also failed to trip. Where did you buy the appliance? Has it got a CE stamp on it?
Edited by: "zcgby03" 24th Apr
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