An electrical panel replacement or upgrade is no small undertaking, but not replacing the panel could cause you more grief than you can imagine. Your electrical panel is the spot where the feed from your utility company comes in. From there the feed branches off and provides power to the various parts of your home or business. It is the distribution center for your electricity. Your circuit breakers are also in the electrical panel and shut off the electricity if it detects an overload.
So What Can Go Wrong?
To the average person, it would seem that the panel is sturdy and nothing can happen to it. The electricity just flows right through and like magic. Your toaster works and you can watch TV while it’s toasting. What people don’t understand is that the feed from the utility gives you only so much power.
It generally works fine, but as you increase your use of electricity with, for example, more powerful equipment in your business or a bigger air conditioner or two in your home, you may run into problems with your electrical feed. We are sure you have experienced your circuit breakers tripping when your microwave kicks on at the same time your toaster is popping. The fact is the electrical panel sometimes needs to be replaced to provide something that provides more power and is in turn, safer.
What Can Cause a Need for an Electrical Panel Replacement?
There are many reasons that you may need a replacement electrical panel. One common reason is that you are using so many electrical appliances that you place too much demand on the power panel. You could have an aging panel, particularly if you are in an old building. They do wear down and when they do they have to be replaced. Sometimes you may simply have a faulty panel. But if you still have fuses, you definitely need to upgrade.
How Do You Know if You Need an Electrical Panel Replacement?
There are signs to watch out for to see if you need a replacement panel and if you see any of these signs call B & B Electric at (817) 600-8376. One easy clue is if your circuits start tripping. Sure, sometimes they just do, but if they trip a lot, repeatedly plunging you into darkness until you reset the breaker, you may not have a sufficient power supply going through your panel.
Another clue is if you notice an acrid smell around the electrical panel. If your wires are wearing down they can create small fires that burn out quickly. Aside from the odor, you should look to see if you have charring or discolored marks around the circuit breakers. This generally means there has been a fire.
Another clue is a bad breaker. When you have problems with your electrical panel, the breaker will trip, but when you try to reset it, it may not reset. Or, if you do reset it, the breaker may kick off again in a short period of time. In other words, it may not hold the power.
What Can Cause An Overload?
These days it seems that more and more electrical appliances and gadgets are being added to our home. Though they make our lives easier, they add a load to your electrical panel. Look around your home or place of business. You routinely add items that need electricity without even thinking about it.
If you have a retail business, you add displays that plug in, cash registers, POS devices, and they all use electricity. In your home, you may add another TV, a few cell phones charging, tablets, laptops; the list is endless. Sure, they use very little electricity in and of themselves, but when you combine them, it adds up. Just look at your TV and count how many things are plugged into it – the DVR, the cable box, the fire stick. You probably have more than one extension cord that lets you plug in multiple electrical devices. It adds up, and if your electrical panel doesn’t have the juice to run it all, it gets overloaded and it fails. If you notice that when you plug in a combination of appliances, or your daughter’s hair dryer causes a problem when the humidifier is on, you should call B&B Electric.
What’s Wrong with Just Resetting the Circuit Breakers When They Trip?
If you constantly reset the breakers you are ignoring the underlying problem. It won’t get better and it won’t stay the same. When the circuits constantly have to be reset they wear out. You may find yourself with no electricity if they won’t hold the power. You could also open yourself up to a potential electrical fire. Don’t wait until the worst happens.