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Outlet Reset Button Keeps Popping? (Easy Fixes, Tips & More)

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Last updated on August 14th, 2022 at 01:24 pm

What do you do when the outlet reset button keeps snapping? If your outlet has a reset button and it keeps popping, that could indicate something wrong with the wiring behind the wall or the electrical components of the socket itself.

A lousy power outlet can cause your electrical devices to keep tripping, and a faulty switch can cause your outlets to lose power.

The good news is that both are relatively easy fixes! In this guide, I’ll walk you through how to fix an outlet that keeps tripping and an outlet reset button that keeps popping from the socket.

All you need are a few simple tools and some basic knowledge of electrical work, and you’ll be back in business in no time!

Your outlet reset button that keeps popping means too much power is causing it to trip off. Other factors contribute to the outlet that isn’t working, like loose wiring or an overloaded circuit, but the reset button checks if there’s a power overload and trips the device off to protect you.

What Does It Mean When the Reset Button on an Outlet Keeps Popping Out?

Outlet Reset Button Keeps Popping

If an excess current flows through an outlet—for example, because you submerge your device in water- its reset button causes the power to switch off immediately, and the RESET button pops out.

It shows that the outlet isn’t working correctly, and you need to reset it. If the outlet trips the circuit breaker, you’ll need to reset the breaker.

If the outlet is GFCI protected, you’ll need to press the reset button, and if it isn’t working, you may need to replace it.

Finally, if the outlet reset button always pops out, it’s probably time to call an electrician.

GFCI outlets and circuit breakers protect you from shock. The manufacturer designs them to trip when current above a certain threshold flows through them, which helps prevent dangerous accidents from occurring.

An outlet reset button will pop out if it’s tripped. To reset a GFCI outlet, push its reset button until it clicks into place, and then turn on any GFCI-protected circuits.

If it does not stop popping out, you’ll need to call an electrician to inspect your electrical wiring or panel box.

These ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI) trip and shut off power to an outlet if they detect a ground fault, which can occur if something wet comes into contact with electrical wiring.

For example, a faulty appliance often causes a tripped GFCI outlet.

What Causes Reset Button to Trip on Outlet?

It’s frustrating when your outlet isn’t working, and you can’t figure out why. One possible reason is that the outlet reset button keeps popping.

Several things can cause this, such as a loose wire, tripped circuit breaker, or accumulated moisture.

One of the most common reasons the outlet reset button trips is because there is a short circuit.

It happens when hot and neutral wires touch each other or when there is a break in the hot or neutral wire.

If the breaker trips, too much current flows through the circuit, caused by a faulty appliance, an overloaded circuit, or loose wiring.

You can test a short circuit by plugging a lamp or another device into your outlet. If it doesn’t work, you know that your outlet has a short circuit.

To check for loose wiring or broken wires, try removing the cover plate from your outlet and test with a multimeter.

It will allow you to test whether or not there is continuity between each of the wires inside your outlet box.

Try using a circuit tester to determine if excess current flows through your outlet. Circuit testers are simple devices that look like plugs with two buttons.

One of these buttons is black, and the other is red. Plug your circuit tester into an outlet and press down on either one of these buttons.

You have overloaded circuits if there is no light or you see any light other than green.

You’ll need to test with a voltage detector to determine if there is a break in your hot or neutral wire.

This device will allow you to plug into your outlet and detect voltage on each of your wires. If you don’t see any lights on when you press down your voltage detector, there is a break in one of your wires.

Depending on what you need to fix, there are two basic ways to improve an outlet that isn’t working: replace the outlet or repair it.

How to Fix Outlet Reset Button That Keeps Popping: (Step by Step)?

To fix your reset button that keeps popping, follow the steps in the table below.

Reset again.Begin with the common stuff if the GFCI test button won’t push in. Next, press the reset button and observe the results. If it stays in for a while, the outlet may be defective, and this GFCI outlet won’t reset in this instance. On the other hand, if the reset button pulls out immediately, it may indicate a faulty electrical or tripped circuit breaker.
Check circuit breakerInspect the circuit breaker if the outlet reset button of the GFCI keeps popping out. Check the breaker panel for tripped circuit breakers to know which direction the tab rests on the breaker panel’s bottom and press it back to reset a tripped circuit breaker. The outlet should start working immediately, and the reset key will stay.
Disconnect the power.If the reset button on your GFCI outlet doesn’t remain, cut the power source. You shouldn’t touch this GFCI outlet and all electrical components until the power goes off. It prevents you from getting electrocuted while repairing the circuit. Disconnect the power and check the outlets for power, as this is compulsory.
Overloaded circuit warning signsOverloaded circuits often cause GFCI outlets’ reset buttons to keep popping out. In addition, there are indications that your circuit has been overloaded, such as lights flickering, many dormant outlets, etc. If so, consider your options. For example, you don’t want to overload a circuit while using other electrical appliances, so reduce the circuit’s load and reset your GFCI outlet.
Change this GFCI outlet.Take out the GFCI outlet if nothing else works. If your circuit isn’t overloaded or the outlet reset button doesn’t stay in, it’s a faulty outlet. Replace this GFCI outlet if there is secure wiring.

What Happens When a GFCI Outlet Won’t Reset?

If the GFCI won’t reset or the “test” button doesn’t pop out, it may not have electricity or be faulty. If the “reset” button keeps tripping, there may be a current leak.

When a GFCI outlet doesn’t reset, it’s usually because of a circuit problem. So first, check the breaker box to see if you have a tripped circuit.

If it has, flip the switch and see if it resets the outlet; if not, you may need to call an electrician.

If your GFCI outlet doesn’t reset, try unplugging it. If that doesn’t work, replace all your outlets on that circuit and plug something else into it to test it. Loose connections cause many electrical issues.

How Do You Know When a GFCI Outlet Is Bad? 

If your outlet’s reset button keeps popping, the outlet is likely flawed, and this usually means that there is a short circuit somewhere, and the GFCI is doing its job by tripping.

Other signs that a GFCI outlet is faulty include if the outlet sparks or if it trips when you plug something into it.

If unsure whether your outlet isn’t functioning well, you can test it with a multimeter. 

You can also know that your reset GCFI outlet is faulty when the indicator on the GCFI turns green to red.

Also, no lights indicate a malfunctioning reset GFCI outlet or circuit.

If you see no lights at all, check your circuit breaker or fuse box to ensure there aren’t any tripped breakers or blown fuses, and then try plugging something else into your GFCI to see if you get power.


In summary, several factors keep your outlet reset button tripping; some common factors include ground faults, moisture accumulation in the reset GCFI button, loose wires, etc.

If this happens to you, you should be careful when fixing it to avoid damage, and if you can’t fix it, do call an electrician.

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