Electrical panel upgrades can become necessary for several reasons. Home renovations or an addition can lead to the necessity for more circuits than are available with the current electrical panel. Situations can also occur even when additional amperage isn’t required. Panel boxes can begin making intermittent crackling sounds; fuses can begin to blow out on a regular basis, or flickering lights can occur. When any of these problems are noticed, it is time to have the electrical panel box inspected.
Major Home Renovation and Additions
Renovations often entail additional outlets, switches, and upgrading of existing fixtures. When this occurs, additional amperage may be required. That means more circuit breakers must be installed. If the existing panel box has no more slots for breakers, an upgrade becomes necessary. For an addition such as a mother-in-law suite, bathroom, or den, several new circuits become necessary. In some circumstances, the panel upgrade may require a second electrical panel being installed and connected to the main panel. The cost of these types of upgrades can be from $676 to $1910.
Panel Box Makes Crackling Sound
Intermittent humming or crackling noises coming from the electrical panel are reasons to call an electrician immediately. The sound can be caused by a number of possibilities. A loose wire on one of the breakers; burnt contacts on the panel box, an overloaded circuit, or a worn out breaker, can cause the irregular noise. A qualified professional can test the equipment and determine the cause. Depending on which type of upgrade is called for, you can expect a bill from $582 to $1647, for this service.
Panel Box Fuses Blow Regularly
Electrical panel boxes that contain fuses “fuse boxes” are the forerunner of the modern, commonly used “breaker Box”. These early types of electrical panels were not designed to carry the loads of the multiple, high tech devices found in today’s home. Decades old, they almost always reach the point when fuses blow on a regular basis. Antiquated by design, fuse panel boxes should be upgraded before these problems occur. Upgrading to a breaker panel box will cost between $542 and $1532 depending on the requirements of your home, and you will not have to engage in the increasingly difficult search for fuses anymore.
Upgrade Your Electrical Panel
Flickering Lights Caused by Panel Box
Flickering lights is a symptom that needs to be diagnosed by an electrician. If it only happens with one light, the probable cause could be a switch. If all the lights on a circuit flicker, the panel box may need to be examined. Flickering is usually accompanied by a short somewhere in the system. Heat can be created, causing wires to become scorched and discolored. In severe cases, fire can develop. The service charge for these upgrades average from $423 to $1198, and should not be delayed.
Less than 10 Years Old vs. 50 Years Old
Homes less than 10 years old will have a modern type breaker box. As far as cost goes, that is a good thing if an upgrade becomes necessary. In this type of house, the breaker box will be a minimum of 100 amps, and probably have enough available open circuits to allow upgrading without needing an entirely new panel. This type of upgrade can usually be completed between $363 and $1004. In older homes, particularly those that are 40-50 years old, the scope of the work can lead to a much higher cost. Older residences often have, not only fuse boxes that must be upgraded, but meters and wiring as well. This is a major upgrade that can cost from $747 to over $2064.
Electrical Panel Upgrade Service
Electrical panels are a crucial part of any wiring system, and as such should be maintained and upgraded as recommended by your electrician. A scheduled yearly inspection will keep problems at bay, and insure the safety and integrity of your home.