10 Aug Signs your Home Needs an Electrical Panel Upgrade
Signs your Home Needs an Electrical Panel Upgrade
The demand on our home’s electrical system has never been greater. With traditional home appliances drawing power, as well as personal charging devices and work-from-home equipment, it might be time to upgrade your home’s electrical panel.
What’s the job of the electrical panel?
Usually found in a basement or garage area, your home’s electrical panel acts like a telephone switchboard. As electricity comes into the home, the panel distributes the current to the various circuits within the home. There is a main breaker to power on or off the home’s entire electric service.
Signs you should consider when upgrading your home’s electrical panel.
You recently put an addition on your home. Homes are usually constructed with a 100 or 150 amp service but panels can come in 200 and 400 amp plans. The size of your home can determine the required draw of amps. Adding square footage to your home can be a cause to consider a panel upgrade since your home will require more electricity.
Your home is older than 50 years. The National Electric Code Safety Standards have put additional precautions in place and some older panels likely don’t comply with current standards.
Rust is present in your panel. Take a look at your home’s electrical panel and inspect if for rust. Components can rust when exposed to moisture, humidity or chipped paint that can leave parts susceptible to the elements. If these components are rusted, it might compromise the effectiveness and safety.
Worn wires within the panel can happen over time. Worn wires can create an environment for an electrical fire to spark. Check for burned areas around the breakers or melting of the insulation.
Lights that dim or flicker consistently might be caused by inadequate power. This is a sign you require more power in your home.
Circuit breakers that continue to trip may indicate that the electrical panel is undersized. It can also mean a breaker is bad within the panel. In either case a professional electrical should be called to assess the issue.
Your panel was manufactured by Zinsco, GTE, Federal Pacific, or Challenger. These types of panels have been recalled due to safety hazards. You should get an estimate for replacement immediately.