Why Is An Electrical Panel Upgrade Expensive & Why Is It Worth It?
The electrical panel is the heart of your property, supplying power to all of its circuits and outlets. But a faulty electrical panel can be a significant safety hazard in your home. A power outage, improper wiring, or shorting of the circuit could cause fires and other damage. If you live in an old house with an outdated electrical panel, it’s time to upgrade to a new one that will provide more safety for everyone! Read on to find out why an electrical panel upgrade is worth the cost.
An old electrical panel is not only unsafe but also costly as well. You have probably seen some signs that tell you how much electricity you use each day when you flip on the lights or turn up the heat—that number is based on your old electrician’s estimate and not necessarily accurate because they may not have factored in your new appliances. They may also have estimated the number of amps and watts your home is using, but more likely than not, they just guessed, and you end up paying too much each month. If you are planning to sell your home soon, an upgraded electrical panel can give it a competitive edge over others on the market, making it a good investment.
Electrical Panel Upgrades – When and Why to Replace?
While most electrical panels are only designed to last up to 30 years, many homeowners have older homes that could use an upgrade much sooner than that. There is no list of specific factors that determine when your panel should be replaced, but you might want to consider it if your home has the following:
Indoor Lights Frequently Dim or Flicker
The lights in your house should only dim when they’re connected to a dimmer switch. Any other kind of fading signals that there’s an issue with either the electrical panel or the utility company. Utilities often experience problems, such as storms and blown transformers, which can cause isolated power issues but usually go away once it passes over. If you notice frequent flickering while using appliances like microwaves and air conditioners, this is likely due to damage done by use on your electrical panels.
Fuses and a Fuse Panel Are Essential to Your Home
Fuses and circuit breakers are safeguards of an overloaded electrical system. The way they protect the power is very different, however. A fuse contains a piece of metal that melts when overheated. A circuit breaker has an internal switch mechanism that cuts power when it senses an unsafe surge in voltage.
This means fuses have been known to cause fires since there’s nothing stopping electricity from going through once melted down by high heat levels like smoke detectors do, for example. On the other hand, circuit breakers cut off electric currents before things get too dangerous but wear out after repeated switching-off or tripping, which can be annoying during any repairs needed afterward due to this extra workload placed upon them over time.
Faulty or Old Wiring
If your electrical panel is up-to-date and you still notice lights flicker, that could be a sign of aging wiring. You may also experience burning smells near electronics or appliances, symptoms of old wires overheating. If these occur often, it’s time to call a licensed electrician as something in the home isn’t working correctly, distributed regularly throughout different areas.
It’s a good idea to get the wiring of your house checked, especially if you live in an old house. Old homes tend to have outdated and potentially unsafe systems that may need replacement sooner rather than later.
Burning or Melting
As a general rule, if there’s burning or melting associated with your electrical system, you should expect to have an imminent fire if you smell any burn coming from your circuit breaker box, which is very important as it serves as the link between household wiring and other devices, cut off all power immediately and call for help before risking further damage.
Breakers Cannot Remain Reset.
When a circuit breaker trips, assuming the problem is just an overloaded circuit can be frustrating. In this case, one thing to look out for is when your breaker trip won’t remain reset, or it keeps cutting off power even after you’ve turned it back on again. This means there’s something wrong with the electrical panel, which needs replacement ASAP!
Reason Why Upgrading Panels are Expensive
Just like the law of diminishing returns, the more you spend for an electrical panel upgrade, the less you’ll get out of it. If you make any further upgrades later on so do your research. It might seem expensive at first, but the long-term benefits of an updated electrical system can save you bundles of money. We know that an updated panel is essential, but there are some significant reasons why it’s also costly:
The Panel’s Cost
An electrical panel is the literal heart of your home’s wiring, and it houses fuses that are instrumental in keeping everything running - including all appliances, lights, and other devices.
That’s why an electrical panel replacement can start at a minimum of $1,000 if you want to get something decent but still within a reasonable price range, and it can go up to as much as $5,000 if you want something high-end that will last for a long time.
However, one of the main reasons an electrical panel upgrade is so costly is the panels themselves. Today, most people will need to replace their current 200 amp electric box with a model that has 400 amps for it to meet household needs because they require more power. But if you already have a 200 amp and notice clear signs that its functionalities are limited, then your only option would be upgrading this system which means going up at least another 100amps costing even more money than before. Another common reason homeowners might need an upgrade could also be due to lack of breaker spaces—the standard from years ago when homes had fewer wattage appliances requiring fewer breakers. Still, we see many houses using double or triple outlets instead, meaning there’s not enough space to accommodate all the new devices and their outlets.
The Standard of the Work
Upgrading an electrical panel is a big job, so labor makes up the bulk of your costs. However, this system lies at the center of all power flow in your house, and you don’t want to skimp on quality over here!
It is essential to hire a licensed electrical contractor for panel upgrades and installation because the work has many implications that can affect your household. These ramifications pose significant danger if you do not know what you are doing!
Three things can happen if work is not up to par:
- There could be insecure wiring.
- The wires might have the incorrect size.
- Short circuits.
When you upgrade your electrical panel, it’s essential to choose quality materials. In addition to the cost of those materials, new wiring may be required. If other issues are uncovered that need fixing, like outdated fixtures or worn-out receptacles, these also have costs. While a well-made electrical system can last years, an inferior panel upgrade can cost you more money in the long run.
Is the Electrical Panel Upgrade worth the Cost
If you live in an older house with a fuse box, then chances are the electrical panel upgrade is worth the cost. The benefits of upgrading to a circuit breaker panel include more safety for your family and less risk of fire or power outage. If you’re not sure if your circuit breaker box needs an upgrade, consider these four indicators that may lead to needing replacement: frequently blown fuses, overloads on specific circuits, tripped breakers when turning off appliances/lights at night; and only using one half of the service panel. Listed below, you’ll find three of the most compelling reasons why the investment is worthwhile.
It Protects Your Home
Electrical fires are a severe problem that leads to far too many deaths each year. The leading cause of these electrical fires is outdated or overwhelmed electric panels, representing danger for your family and home. Upgrading the panel will be an investment worth making because it keeps you safe from fire caused by faulty system wiring.
Safeguards Your Electrical System
If you have older appliances or have been renovated with new ones that require more power to run and keep cool, it’s essential to invest in a new electrical panel. If the old one can’t handle these devices simultaneously without tripping, this can cause damage by ruining them. The best way forward is to have an updated system so that you won’t need any of those pesky breakers anymore!
Your Electrical Bill Will Likely Go down
If you have many circuits that are overloading, it can lead to higher energy bills. So by upgrading your panel, you can potentially save money in the long run! You’ll have more control of your electrical system, keeping it efficient, so you only pay for the energy that you use.
Contact a local electrician to learn more about the cost of an electrical panel upgrade and when it’s time to change your current system.
The Bottom Line
Upgrading an electrical panel may seem like a daunting task. It is not as easy as flipping a switch, but it is worth the effort and expense if you do not want to pay for costly repairs in the future. Whether your home has been around since 1960 or was built last year, upgrading your current electrical system will give you peace of mind that everything is working correctly and safely- no matter what happens with power outages or storms.
If you have any queries about how this process works or whether it would benefit your family, please get in touch with Daven Electric Corp! We are always glad to answer all of our clients’ inquiries to make informed decisions based on their individual needs.
Daven Electric Corp is a Brooklyn-based electrical contractor that offers installation services for commercial, industrial, and residential properties. Our team is made up of highly skilled electricians who have been in the industry for decades. You can trust us to do quality work at an affordable price! We offer free estimates, emergency service, and we’re fully licensed and insured.
If you’re looking for a trusted company to install your new electrical system or upgrade your old one, look no further than Daven Electric Corp. Call today at 212-390-1106 to schedule an appointment with our friendly staff! You won’t be disappointed by our high-quality craftsmanship and excellent customer service.