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3 Signs it's Time to Upgrade Your Home's Electrical Panel

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When it comes to your home's power supply, chances are you don't think much about it until it is gone or does not meet your basic needs. Unfortunately, many older electrical panels are simply not equipped to supply enough energy to power all the gadgets in your home. However, you might not realize your home's power supply is not adequate because you've learned to live with the quirks of your outdated system. Here are three instances where it would be prudent and safe to upgrade your home's electrical panel:

Defective Wiring

According to the National Fire Protection Association, there were approximately 47,000 house fires caused by a faulty electrical system. Inadequate or poorly installed wiring is a hazard and in many cases, you won't know there is a problem until it's too late.

Don't wait for a fire to wake you up to your home's defective wiring and instead, look for these signs:

  • Flickering lights
  • A strange burning smell that won't go away
  • A shock or tingle in your fingers when you touch an appliances
  • Buzzing near your outlets
  • Outlets that are hot to the touch or have charred marks

If you notice any of these signs, don't hesitate to contact an electrician immediately. They will not only be able to determine if your electrical panel is inadequate, they will also help determine if your home's wiring needs to be replaced, as well.

An Unsafe Electrical Panel

Unless you're a licensed electrician, chances are you don't have any idea which brand or type of electrical panel is found in your home. The technology behind electrical panels has changed dramatically over the last 50 years, and the United States federal government has deemed many models and brand unfit for use.

If your electrical panel is older, or you're simply concerned that you might have a model that isn't safe, don't hesitate to contact an electrician. This professional can help determine if your model was recalled, and will assist you with finding a new panel that will meet your home's needs and fit your budget.

Appliances Upgrades or Additions

Installing newer, more energy-efficient appliances is a great way to save money, while making your appear more sleek and modern. You might even be considering taking on an even larger renovation project, such as a home addition.

While you were shopping for new appliances or meeting with an architect to determine how much of an addition you can afford, did you consider how much electricity will be required to power the increased load?

If your home's electrical panel is smaller or even a few years old, it might not be equipped to power the more energy-hungry modern appliances or the additional outlets and fixtures in your new addition. Don't risk overloading your existing panel and instead, contact an electrician to determine your home's new needs.

In addition to new appliances or some more square footage, it's important to consider a new electrical panel if you're upgrading your HVAC system, as well.

While you are shopping for a replacement electrical panel, don't forget that there is a good chance your home will require even more power to accommodate all the gadgets and appliances you will purchase in the future.

Your electrical panel is often one of the most important, and overlooked, components of your home. If you're not satisfied with your home's power supply, or you suspect the electrical system is unsafe, don't hesitate to contact a local electrician immediately. You will be amazed at how fast, easy and cost effective it is to provide your home and family with the power it needs.