Sooty substance from Plug?

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Old 03-21-06, 10:22 AM
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Sooty substance from Plug?

Our House was built in the 40's. When we moved in the plug outlets consisted of 3 inserts instead of the usual 2, we changed them all to 2. In the front hallway I have an outlet that I get a sooty smoke type stain on the wall, we repainted last summer, at first I thought that the stain was bleeding through the new paint (although we did prime two coats then painted two coats to cover previous colour) that not be the case. We again removed the plug this weekend and re-checked the wiring behind, everthing seems fine, but I cant smell anything coming from the outlet and still get the residue on the wall from the top of the plug....with a bit of elbow grease and pinesol it can be removed.....any suggestions to the cause or help would be greatly appreciated.

PS the walls are all plaster.......
 
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Old 03-21-06, 10:51 AM
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I know you said hallway, but is the outlet on an outside wall? If not, what is on the other side of the wall?

I don't think the cause is electrical.
 
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Old 03-21-06, 11:11 AM
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It is probably from a draft or air flow in the wall that is exiting around the receptacle.
 
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Old 03-21-06, 12:11 PM
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Could be that there is a leaky heating duct in the wall. Actually, the word "leaky" is practically redundant. Almost all heating ducts are leaky.
 
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Old 03-21-06, 07:08 PM
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Get some of those foam insulating rec/switch inserts from your hardware store, install them and see. It sounds like some type of draft.
 
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Old 03-24-06, 09:15 AM
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Sorry should have given a bit more information. The outlet is located in front hallway about 6 feet from the front door of the home, we live in the country so seldom use the front door. On the other side of the wall it is a dining room. It is not on an outside wall.........Thanks .....

Originally Posted by John Nelson
I know you said hallway, but is the outlet on an outside wall? If not, what is on the other side of the wall?

I don't think the cause is electrical.
 
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Old 03-24-06, 09:21 AM
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Originally Posted by John Nelson
Could be that there is a leaky heating duct in the wall. Actually, the word "leaky" is practically redundant. Almost all heating ducts are leaky.

We dont have any heating ducts in the house, we have hot water radiant heating. The last time i cleaned it off it almost seemed like a greasy soot, I litrally had to scrub the wall to get it off, using vim and pinesol my concern was mainly the black plastic/rubber like coating that covers the wires joining the plug insert?
There has been times in the past where I have smelt a faint smokey smell in the hallway.
 
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Old 03-24-06, 09:23 AM
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Originally Posted by lectriclee
Get some of those foam insulating rec/switch inserts from your hardware store, install them and see. It sounds like some type of draft.
Thanks for the reply, I did put them on all the outside plug outlets but not inside as I didnt think it was necessary, I will try that and see if it solves the issue.
Thanks again
 
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