The outlets within your home should not move around when you plug and unplug items from within them. If this is happening, the outlet may need to be tightened to ensure that it stays put when you use it. The guide below walks you through the process to tighten an outlet so that it no longer moves around within the wall.
Turn Off Power to the Room
The first thing you want to do is you want to make sure that power is turned off to the room. Go to the circuit breaker box and search for the breaker that is labeled for the room that the outlet is in. There are some circuits that lead to specific appliances, such as the washer, dryer, or a hot tub. If you are repairing the outlet for any of these items, be sure that you turn off the circuit to that specific appliance. You turn off the circuit by turning the switch away from the center of the circuit breaker box.
Test the Outlet
Next, you want to test the outlet to make sure that no power is running to it. You can do this by checking to see if any lights are still lit on the appliance that is plugged into it or by plugging an alarm clock into an outlet that has nothing plugged into it. If there are still any lights lit or the alarm clock becomes lit, the power is still flowing to the outlet. If no lights are lit, you can continue.
Remove the Faceplate
When you look directly at the outlet, there will be a faceplate over it that hides the opening in the wall around the outlet. Use a screwdriver to turn the screws counterclockwise to remove the faceplate from the wall. Be sure to lay the faceplate on the ground with the portion that was facing the wall pointed toward the sky because you can then place the screws inside of it so that you do not lose them.
Tighten the Outlet
Look closely at the outlet. As you plug and unplug things from the outlets, the screws that secure the outlets can often become unscrewed and cause the outlet to be able to move around freely. Adjust the outlet so that it sits flush and tighten the screws until they can no longer be tightened. Try to rock the outlet back and forth lightly to see if it moves. If it does not, you can replace the faceplate and secure the screws to hold it into place.
Once you have replaced the faceplate, you can turn the power to the outlet back on at the circuit breaker box. The outlet should now stay in place when you attempt to use it. For assistance, talk to a professional like Narducci Electric.