House outlets for electric power are comprised of a cable that carries the power from a circuit-breaker panel or
a fuse box to a metal or plastic box containing a receptacle.
Caution: Before working on a receptacle, turn off the power to its circuit. To check that it is off, see Circuit testing.
If an outlet doesn’t work, unscrew the cover plate and receptacle. Fix any loose or broken wires. Reinstall the receptacle; restore power. Plug in a working appliance. If it doesn’t run, install a new receptacle.
Turn off the power. Unscrew the old wires. Clip them at the insulation, then strip 3/4 inch of insulation from each wire. Hook the wire ends clockwise around the new receptacle’s terminals, black to the brass screw, white to the silver one. Screw them fast. Or use a back-wired receptacle and insert the stripped wires into the two holes in its back. Screw the receptacle to the box. Replace the cover plate and restore power to the circuit.