Typical home upgrades and replacements are easy to identify as you can physically see the damage or need to update. Your house wiring, however, lives behind the walls and is hardly noticeable. So while your electricity may seem to be running fine, lights working and all, it’s important to understand when it’s time to upgrade your electrical panel and wiring to ensure the safety of your home and family.
Your Electrical Wiring & Electrical Panel
Most modern homes are equipped with an electrical panel and circuit breakers, as opposed to a fuse box. The purpose of the electrical panel is to connect your home to the main power line. The electrical panel distributes the electricity through wiring to multiple circuits in your home. Circuit breakers provide protection against over-powering a specific circuit by cutting the power off. If not functioning properly, your home is in danger of potential electrical fires.
Signs that it’s Time to Replace or Upgrade Your Electrical Panel
Electrical panels can last up to 60 years, however, even though they may be functioning properly, they could need an upgrade sooner to meet new safety standards. If you’re unsure if your panel requires an upgrade, have a safety inspection done today. If you notice any of these common signs, it’s time to upgrade your electrical panel. Be sure to connect with a licensed electrician as soon as possible.
Electrical Panel & Fuse Box
If your home still has a fuse box, it’s a good sign it’s time to upgrade. Fuses run lower amps than breakers, causing them to blow more often in newer homes. When you ‘blow a fuse’, rather than simply resetting a breaker, you actually have to replace the entire fuse which can become costly over time. Attempting to replace fuses with higher amps can lead to house fires caused by too much electricity flowing through. This is why it is safer to upgrade to circuit breakers.
If you notice that there is any sign of rusting within your electrical panel (think on the actual breaker switches or wires) it’s time to replace your panel. Signs of rusting indicate that the area has been exposed to moisture. Water and electricity do not mix well and can put yourself and your home at risk. Additionally, moisture can lead to further corrosion of the electrical panel which can cause it to not function properly, leaving you at risk.
Circuit Breakers Constantly Tripping
A circuit breaker trips when it is overloaded with power. This can happen when the specific breaker is pulling more amps than it can handle. As a safety measure, it cuts the power to prevent any fire hazards. Other than cutting off your power, flickering lights are a sign of a weak circuit breaker that may need to be replaced. If a circuit breaker is constantly tripping, it can cause more wear and tear faster, which in turn will cause it to trip more often as it can’t handle typical amperage.
Scorch marks, burning smells, and constant trips are all signs that you may have a bad breaker. If you notice any of those signs, be sure to connect with a local electrician to get them replaced as soon as possible. If you would like the peace of mind, you can connect with an electrical contractor to inspect your home’s electrical panel and wiring as well.
It’s important to understand that these are not the only signs that should raise a flag. If you notice anything different or concerning about your electrical panel, be sure to contact your local electrician as soon as possible. Many companies, like Krimp Electric, are available 27/4 for emergency services if anything arises. Calling an emergency electrician can help save your home and family from a disaster.