Learning, Outlet,

How Long Does It Take for an Outlet to Dry? (Wet Outlet Tips)

Today I’m discussing something important for everyone’s safety: drying wet outlets.

A wet outlet is dangerous. Please don’t use it! Cut off the power supply to that outlet immediately. My advice is to let it then dry naturally. Usually, around 12 hours is sufficient, although you may have to double that duration. If you can’t wait that long, you can use a hair dryer or blower to make it dry faster, but blow with cold air rather than hot air.

Below, I’ve also given some tips to help prevent it from getting wet again.

Why We Should Wait for an Outlet to Dry

If an outlet gets wet, it’s very important that you let it dry.

As you know, electricity and water don’t mix! This creates an electrocution hazard. Outlets in areas exposed to moisture are most at risk.

alert sign in red

Whatever you do, don’t use a wet outlet. The consequences can be severe and even fatal. Turn off the power supply to that outlet immediately.

A wet outlet poses the following risks:

  • Short circuits
  • Damage to the internal wiring
  • Burning
  • Electrical fire
  • Electric shock
  • Loss of life

Don’t risk using it. Let it dry!

How Long an Outlet Might Take to Dry

There’s no exact duration for how long an outlet will take to dry because it depends on the outlet, how much moisture or water is inside, the place it’s located in, and how you’re letting it dry.

However, you should usually allow around 8 to 12 hours if you let it dry naturally, which is preferable in minor cases. If there’s a lot of water, you should dry it yourself (see below), and you might have to allow a whole day (24 hours).

How to Make an Outlet Dry Quicker

First, disconnect the electricity supply to make an outlet dry quicker.

If it’s an extension cord, you will have already detached it from an outlet, and if it’s a fixed outlet, the circuit breaker will have tripped. Keep it tripped (don’t switch it back on), but also test the outlet using a voltage tester to ensure there is no power.

You can easily wipe the outer part of the outlet with a cloth, but to dry it thoroughly inside, you will have to open it.

Tips for Preventing an Outlet from Getting Wet

outlet seal
Waterproof sealing for protecting the outlet from wet

To prevent an outlet from getting wet again, investigate how it got wet and consider what you can do about it. Here are some tips:

  • If it’s a fixed outdoor outlet, does it have a waterproof cover? If not, you can easily buy and install one.
  • If the outlet is exposed to moisture indoors, consider relocating it to a safer distance.
  • If it’s not a GFCI outlet, replace it with a GFCI one because you shouldn’t be using a regular outlet in a place exposed to moisture.
  • If you need to use an extension cord (or power strip) outdoors, you can buy one with strong sealing rings to prevent rainwater from entering (see the picture of one below).

Image and Video References


Silver Cymbal

Waterproof sealing for protecting the outlet wet: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Outdoor-Electrical-Electric-Waterproof-Outside/dp/B08X6WJ11F.

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About Sam Orlovsky

AvatarCertifications: B.E.E.
Education: University Of Denver - Electric Engineering
Lives In: Denver Colorado

Electrical engineering is my passion, and I’ve been in the industry for over 20 years. This gives me a unique ability to give you expert home improvement and DIY recommendations. I’m not only an electrician, but I also like machinery and anything to do with carpentry. One of my career paths started as a general handyman, so I also have a lot of experience with home improvement I love to share.

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