Electric wiring is an integral system of your home; it powers the lights, the heating and cooling, personal computers, and many of the appliances you rely on. In fact, much of the comfort and security you feel in your home is due to the efficient functioning of the electrical system. It’s easy to forget that this quiet, behind-the-scenes system requires consistent maintenance and, sometimes, an electrical panel upgrade. This is particularly true if you live in an older home.
Electrical Panel and Circuit Breakers
When flickering lights or tripped breakers are disrupting your days and nights, it’s time to give the wires and other components of your electrical system some quick attention. Your first step includes understanding the electrical panel and circuit breakers:
- The electrical panel, or breaker box, houses the circuit breakers to the rest of your home. These circuit breakers route electricity to the outlets in your home and limits how much power may be drawn from each outlet.
- Sometimes, there are power surges from the power supplier in your community. The breakers prevent these surges from overloading the circuits. This protects against overheating and fires.
There are several signs that indicate you need an electrical panel upgrade, such as frequent breaker tips, burned spots on outlets or the breaker panel, wires that are visibly damaged, lights flicker frequently, overheating appliances.
Sources of Trouble
The next step is recognizing the most common causes of electrical problems. Some of these issues are caused by homeowners, such as plugging too many appliances into one outlet. In some older homes, if all the outlets are on a single breaker, homeowners must avoid overloading that single breaker. Pests, such as mice nibbling at wiring, are another common source of trouble.
A Professional Response
Electricity is a wonderful source of power for home, but it also carries many innate hazards. When your home requires an electrical panel upgrade, contact a professional. In fact, when you notice these signs of concern, you should quickly contact an electrician to avoid further damage or harm. Quick repair and replacement actions can prevent future damage that requires a much more expensive course of action.