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How to Upgrade A Home Electrical Panel
If your breaker panel is outdated or unable to handle the load required to power all the modern appliances and electrical devices in your home, those are clear signs that an upgrade is due. Upgrading an electrical panel is also often necessary for home safety, reasonable convenience, and sufficient electrical capacity for modern living. A house electrical panel upgrade is necessary in most older homes for those reasons, but sometimes people delay making this important improvement. Below is a list of other signs that it’s time for a residential electrical panel upgrade.
What’s an Electrical Panel Upgrade and Why Get One?
When common electrical problems are due to a faulty electrical panel, an upgrade of that component is needed for the safety and functioning of the home’s entire electrical system. If the panel is allowed to continue malfunctioning, electrical damage can impact the whole system and/or cause a house fire. An electrical panel upgrade typically involves replacing the existing panel. In many cases, it is advisable to upgrade to 200-amp utility service at the same time.
How to Upgrade Electrical Panel
This is a very generalized description of the process for home electrical panel upgrades:
Shut off the electricity for the entire property.
Remove wires to the electrical boards.
Remove the existing fuse box or electrical breaker panel.
Install the new electrical panel on the wall.
Reconnect all the necessary existing wiring that is in good condition.
Install the new circuits on the panel.
Connect the ground wire to the breaker panel.
Have the new breakers and panel inspected.
Signs You Need to Upgrade Electrical Panels
Whether you have an older or newer home, there are various reasons why it may be time, or past time, to upgrade your electrical panel.
Insufficient Electrical Capacity
If you have flickering lights that may be a sign that you need an electrical panel replacement. There may be a risk of an electrical fire, so this problem should be checked by a licensed electrician promptly. There may be overloaded circuits.
To Update from a Fuse Box
Fuse boxes were installed in homes in the 1960s and earlier. Many old homes still have those. They’re due to be replaced. A new circuit breaker panel will offer reduced risk of a house fire and eliminate the inconvenience of frequently replacing fuses.
Circuit Breakers Need Resetting Often
Outdated circuit breakers, typically found in houses built in the 1980s and earlier, should be replaced. Homes built then ran easily with 100 to 150 amps of power. But, homes built more recently typically have 200-amp service to accommodate all the modern appliances, electronics, and the many other electrical devices used in the typical home.
Planning a Home Remodel
Upgrading your home and adding more living space means adding more electrical capacity for the additional air conditioning, heating, lighting, and electrical outlets for appliances and devices. For insurance purposes, you’ll likely need to have everything inspected by a licensed electrician.
Frequently Replacing Circuit Breakers
There are multiple possible causes of breakers tripping frequently. It may be due to a ground fault issue, a short in the circuit, or a circuit overload. The latter may indicate a problem with the breaker box, which may be a fire hazard.
Electric Panel Upgrades – Master Electrician New Jersey
Upgrading your electrical panel may be necessary for fire safety. It may also be needed to increase your home’s capacity to power all the modern electrical items that make up modern life without risk to your home or your electrical system. Your insurance company may require that you hire a licensed electrician to make the upgrade and have a professional inspection before turning the power to your home back on.