In a previous post, we took you inside and toured the anatomy of your home’s main electrical panel. This nifty devices controls the power distribution and electricity in your home.
Upgrading your electrical panel is not something we would ever recommend doing yourself. It’s risky and technical so hiring an electrician is the best way to go.
Do You Still Have a Fuse Box?
Homes older than the 1960’s operated on fuse boxes instead of circuit breakers. Fuses burn out and have to be replaced, but circuit breakers just need to be switched back on. For safety and convenience, we would recommend upgrading your fuse box to a circuit breaker.
How Old is your Home?
Homes that are 20 or 30 years old, typically have lower amperage capacity in their electrical panels. Most homes of this vintage support 60 or 100 amps versus today’s electrical panels which support an average of 200 amps which is more suitable for current lifestyles.
Does your Panel Feel Warm?
A panel that feels warm to the touch may be overloaded and could use an upgrade. Ask your electrician for an expert opinion.
Does your Panel Trip Often?
If your panel trips often or you hear a crackling noise, this typically means that you have more appliances or devices plugged into a circuit than it can support. This usually means it’s time for an upgrade. If your appliances are not running at capacity this could also be a sign that panels are outdated or overloaded.
Are You Looking to Make Upgrades?
If you’re planning to upgrade your appliances, you may want to check if your current electrical panel can support them. If you find yourself using power strips a lot, you may want to add new outlets to your home. In this case, you will also want to consult your electrician if your panel is due for an upgrade.
Cost of Upgrading an Electrical Panel
Electrical projects are not usually suitable even for the savviest of DIY-ers. You should hire an electrician to do this kind of work.
The cost of upgrading your electrical panel, like any contracting project, will vary. This typically depends on the current state of the panel, the age of the home and how many panels require upgrading. According to HomeGuide, the average cost typically ranges between $850 to $3,000. Permits for this kind of project are usually required. At Wire Craft, we can take care of this for you, but it will be a component of the overall cost of the upgrade.