Wife notice an odd smell (sort of like chlorine) coming near an outlet last night. I immediately shut off the breaker and took off the covers to investigate. The last homeowners put in one of these outlets with the USB – A ports in them. It seems that one of the neutral wires slipped away from the screw and started arcing with the hot line above it, melting the plastic.
We got lucky that we caught it. My plan was to clip out any wire with the damage to the insulation, and properly secure the wires in a GFI outlet (its in the kitchen and wasn’t done properly to begin with. My question is whether I need to worry about damage in the rest of the romex line? Not sure if an issue like this means I should replace the entire line or not.
Also it seemed a little odd to me that this outlet has the Hot and the neutral are so close together. On most AC applications it seems that there is some distance between the lines, which could prevent a little slip like this from causing a major problem. Is this common in other places that I just might not be familiar with?