A home electrical system upgrade is no small task. Before you decide to go through with the job, there are a few things you should know. Find out what questions you can ask about the upgrade. When you get the right information from your electrician in Tampa, FL, you can make the most of your upgrade. For the best results, ask all of the following questions.
1. Why Should I Upgrade My Home Electrical Panel?
Your electrical panel does more than you think. In fact, it’s in control of many of your daily activities. Without a working panel, you can’t use most of your cooking appliances, keep your house a comfortable temperature, or watch television.
Unfortunately, most people don’t realize the importance of their electrical panel until it fails them. They wait too long to upgrade it and end up experiencing life without power.
By knowing when to upgrade your electrical system, you can prevent yourself from living without modern conveniences. You can also save yourself from a potential fire hazard.
2. Should I Upgrade My System Now?
It’s not always the right time for a system upgrade. To determine whether or not you should take the next step, you contact one of the best electrical contractors in Tampa.
They will speak to you and listen to your concerns. Furthermore, an expert can inspect your system and identify areas of weakness. Typically, there are a few signs that your system is ready for an upgrade.
One sign is a circuit breaker that trips frequently. If you’re tired of resetting your breaker, you may need an upgrade. Another sign is the dimming of lights when you use an appliance. You should be able to use multiple appliances without draining your system.
Other signs include:
- Hot electrical panel or signs of heat warping
- You have new electrical needs
- A breaker that won’t stay reset
- Your panel was recalled or is considered dangerous
If you have a home that’s at least 25 years old, you can almost guarantee that you need an upgrade. You should call an expert immediately because upgrading your panel could make a world of difference.
3. Why Does an Older Home Need an Upgrade?
As a general rule, homes that are 25 years old or older need to receive upgrades to their electrical systems. This doesn’t have as much to do with convenience as it does safety.
Think about the electrical demands of a family in 1975. Back then, they didn’t have half of the electric appliances and devices that we have today. Older systems are only able to handle between 30 and 60 amps, on average. For that reason, your system may not be equipped to meet your electrical needs.
The Danger of Outdated Panels
There are a few serious issues with having an older system. For one, your circuit breaker might not trip when it’s supposed to. A loose connection could prevent it from tripping, which may result in a fire. If you don’t have a newer system, you can’t be sure that it’s safe.
Another issue comes from the lack of a history of electrical work. If you buy an older home, there’s a good chance that a former owner did some electrical work themselves. DIY electric jobs are dangerous and may not be in compliance with current safety codes. Even if the work was compliant decades ago, it might not be in accordance with today’s standards. The DIY job could result in a fire.
If you want to keep your household safe, you should consider upgrading your panel. When you call one of the reputable electrical contractors in Tampa, you can ask about your older system. They can explain why you need an upgrade.
4. How Long Does the Average Electrical Panel Last?
An electrical panel won’t last forever, nor will the rest of your electrical system. On average, panels last between 25 and 40 years. There are many factors that affect the lifespan of your panel, including the frequency of maintenance, the brand of the panel, and your own electrical demands.
Because the lifespan is such a wide window, you need to watch your electrical system closely. Look for signs of imminent failures, such as flickering lights or tripping breakers. Additionally, pay attention to recalls on panels. If your brand of panel has a recall, you need to replace it.
Sometimes, increased electrical needs cause your panel to fail before its expected time. If you’ve added a new room to your home or have new major appliances, it might be time to upgrade your panel.
5. How Can I Benefit from an Upgraded Electrical System?
There are several ways in which getting an upgraded system can benefit you. Perhaps the most significant benefit is the improved safety. Your new system will prevent the risk of house fires, which makes your home a safer place to be.
An upgrade could also improve your financial situation. Because new systems are more energy-efficient than old ones, they require less energy to run. Every month, you can enjoy a lower energy bill.
You’ll also save money when you sell your home. A new system makes your home more valuable. When you’re ready to move, your home may sell more quickly and at a higher price point.
6. Can I Do a DIY Upgrade?
In an effort to save money, you might want to try to perform an upgrade on your own. However, a DIY upgrade will be a mistake.
Replacing your electrical panel is a big job. If not done properly, the replacement could result in a house fire. During the installation, the individual could be shocked. However you look at it, doing the work yourself is dangerous.
A DIY job also comes with other consequences. Without electrical training, you may not be able to keep the upgrade up to code. Your home insurance could deny a claim, or a future buyer might decide against purchasing your home.
Working with an Electrician in Tampa, FL
For the best results, you should consult with an experienced electrician in Tampa, FL. They can answer all of your questions and put you at ease. To learn more, contact us at Comfort All Stars.