Have you ever thought about upgrading your electrical panel? Have you thought about your electrical panel at all? Until the power goes out from the weather or too many appliances are plugged into the same wall, most people don’t think about their electrical panel. You probably pay attention to your lovely metal panel box once a year or less.
Every homeowner should pay attention to their electrical panel and do upgrades when needed so your home stays safe and adequately powered. Following the information in this guide will educate you and other homeowners on when to spot the evidence showing that you need to do an electrical panel upgrade.
Do Your Lights Flicker?
In terms of signs that your electrical panel might need an upgrade, your lights are a big clue. If you use multiple appliances simultaneously and see your lights dim, your circuits may be getting overloaded. The subtle signs of possible electrical issues from your panel spread throughout the home. If notice a light switch is warm to the touch after a couple hours of use, it could mean an electrical overload.
When you have overheating circuits, it can draw unnecessary heat to switches and outlets. If you don’t check them properly, it could result in a fire or an entire overheating of your electrical panel resulting in your entire house losing power. Things like dirt, dust, grease and oils can cause yellowing of your outlets. Cleaning them on occasion will help them stay white and enable you to notice if burn marks or other attributes that dictate possible overheating occur.
If your lights are flickering, there are a lot of possible problems happening. The problematic effect of lights flickering depends on where they are flickering, how often, and what is on when they are flickering. If one room is flickering, it is probably just the light bulb, so replace it and test it again. Both heating and cooling appliances such as furnaces and AC units draw a lot of power while on. Most households can run around 200 amps. When electrical environment appliances are on, like the AC units and electrical furnaces, they can draw about 100 amps alone.
If you have lights flickering throughout the house and you don’t have heavy appliances running, that is a sign that your service conductors could be loose in your electrical panel. If this issue occurs throughout the neighborhood, it could be damaged equipment outside of your home, resulting in electrical fluctuations. At this point, the power company should be contacted and be made aware of the issue.
How Old Is Your Home?
Essential factors such as the date they built the home and when the electrical panel was last updated make a difference. Electrical panels, like all things, degrade over time. Just like the roof of your house, the carpet, lights and other aspects of your home, the electrical panel needs to be replaced or upgraded at some point.
Upgrading your electrical panel is especially required if you plan on running the newer high-end electronics such as TVs, computers and more. To avoid constant breaker trips and power outages, you need to ensure your current electrical panel can handle everything you use in the home. If you continually blow the breakers, it could be bad for the electrical system in the house and your electronics.
Insurance may require you to upgrade the electrical panel if it is particularly old. This prevents possible overheating, house fires, electrical damage, and more serious risks caused by older electrical panels.
Does Your Panel Trip if You Plug in Too Many Things?
If you notice that your panel trips when you have too many things plugged in, that is a good sign that you need to look into upgrading the panel. Your panel trips when somewhere in the electrical of the home, too much electricity is being passed through and avoiding fire or a blowout, the panels trip to stop the electrical flow. Homes have wiring that produces electricity with three types of electrical wiring: the electric current, a neutral wire, and a grounding wire.
The electrical current and neutral wire should never touch, or it will increase the resistance resulting in higher electrical voltage sent through the wire. When these factors come into play, it could cause an electrical fire. If these instances occur, the breaker trips and shut down power to that section of the house. Ensure never to block your electrical panel or fuse box, so you have easy access to it when a panel trips or you need to check on the wires.
To help deduce where the problem originated from, unplug everything from that particular breaker before resetting it. After resetting the breaker, slowly plug in all your items until you find the one electronic that trips the breaker again. If this often happens in your home, it is time to upgrade your electrical panel so your home can handle the variety of electronics used daily.
Are You Overusing Extension Cords in Your Home?
Many people utilize extension cords so appliances or items work farther away from the main wall socket than usual. Extension cables can run power from one room of the home into another room with no wall outlets. At times multiple extension cords are hooked up and used, which poses a severe fire hazard risk.
Using multiple extension cords could also pose a risk since it redistributes electricity to parts of the house that don’t have outlets, putting unnecessary stress on the breakers and electrical wiring in the home section where the cords originate from. To reduce this risk, only use one extension cable per socket. If you smell burning coming from an outlet or extension cable, trip the breaker first before attempting to adjust any cords.
Live In the Central Florida Area? Give Deltron Electric a Call!
Deltron Electric is ready to help you upgrade the electric panel of your home and provide safe service for all your electrical needs. Deltron Electric employees are experts at electrical panel renovations, new installations, ceiling fans, and more. You can rest easy in knowing your home can safely produce the power you require daily.