A properly working electrical panel is critical because it’s responsible for distributing power to all appliances and outlets/switches in the house. Your panel is constantly heating up and cooling down whenever an appliance is used. After 15 to 25 years, that expansion and contraction will inevitably take its toll. How do you know when it’s time to replace your home’s electrical panel? Here are five things you need to look for.
- It’s a Federal Pacific panel.
Federal Pacific panels were frequently used in this area. They’ve lost all UL (Underwriter Laboratories) certification. All Federal Pacific panels are unsafe and we recommend that they are replaced as soon as possible.
- It’s an old fusebox.
If your home has an old system with screws and/or fuses, we highly recommend moving to a modern circuit breaker panel.
- The breaker is always tripping.
Most people go years before having to touch their panel. If you have a modern panel but notice that the breakers are constantly tripping, that’s a good indication that the panel is beginning to wear down.
- There’s evidence an electrical fire occurred in the panel.
A burnt plastic smell or discoloration marks around the circuit breakers are indicators that there may have been a fire in the panel. (Fires in the panel extinguish themselves quickly because of the lack of a fuel source.) This is a situation that should be addressed to prevent further fire hazard.
- The breakers don’t stay set.
If a breaker trips and you can’t reset it, there could be a problem with the breaker, the circuit, or the panel. A qualified professional should check it out as soon as possible.
How will Boulden Brothers help?
It’s difficult for a homeowner to spot the signs of an electrical fire. That’s why we check the panel as part of our BAM Club Electrical Safety Inspection. During the panel rejuvenation, we take the cover off the panel and make sure that all wires and components are tightly arranged. We also check every breaker, wire, and connection point to make sure they are functioning properly.
If there’s a Federal Pacific panel or fuse system in the house, we’ll replace it with a safe and modern circuit breaker system. We also look at the size of the home and its electrical demand. A professional electrician will be able to make an assessment based on what is most appropriate for the house.
As houses have grown over the decades, so has our demand for electricity. Many older houses weren’t equipped with an electrical panel designed to meet our modern needs. Back in the 1960s and 1970s, household appliances like microwaves and blenders weren’t common. In 2015, we have computers, TVs, and many other appliances that drastically increase electrical demand. We’re equipped to make sure that your home’s electrical panel has the capacity to keep up with your needs.
If it’s time to check your home’s electrical panel, give us a call today or contact us online.