Your home’s electrical service panel is important not just for electrical functionality around the entire house, but especially for your safety. Should you need a new electrical panel installation in Longmont, CO, or any related upgrades, you can depend on Save Home Heat Company. Our highly experienced and highly skilled electrical department is your go-to source for electrical panel upgrades and services. We are here to help make your home safer, more efficient, and as convenient as possible.
Electrical Panel and Circuit Breakers in Your Longmont Home
There are plenty of names your electrical service panel goes by. Some call it a breaker box, others a circuit breaker box, and some simply refer to is as an electrical panel. It’s generally a grey or black rectangular metal box with a door for access in the front. Inside, you’ll see a series of switches called circuit breakers (or possibly fuses, if you have a very old panel). Most often, an electrical panel will be located on the wall in places such as a closet, an unfinished part of your basement, on in an attached garage; occasionally they are attached to a wall outside your home inside of a weatherproof enclosure.
Inside your panel, a series of circuit breakers control the flow of electricity to the electrical circuits (usually between 20-40 circuits) throughout areas of your home. The two types of circuit breakers you’ll generally find are 120 volt and 240 volt breakers. 120 volt breakers take up one slot in your panel, and 240 volt take up two. Your panel should have a diagram that outlines what areas of your home are related to which specific breaker. 240 volt circuit breakers are often ‘dedicated’ breakers; assigned to a specific larger appliance like a central air conditioner, hot tub, or heavy power tool.
When is Electrical Panel Replacement Necessary For A Longmont Home?
If you’re the average homeowner, it’s perfectly understandable that you don’t stay up to date with changes to electrical code affecting Longmont and the entire country. It’s not exactly fun reading! However, it does make sense to at least have some basic understanding of your electrical panel and when an electrical panel upgrade or replacement makes sense. Should you need any service in Longmont related to your electrical panel, you can trust that our team has the full set of skills and experience to know just how to best proceed.
First, it is helpful to consider the age of your electrical panel. Was your home built more than 15 years ago? If so, it’s probably already behind current electrical code. But that doesn’t mean a new electrical panel installation is necessary. Also, what types of electric appliance upgrades have you made in your home over the years? Are there several more computers and televisions? A new freezer, an EV charger, or maybe a hot tub? Chances are, you’ve added a lot of electrical demand, and whether your panel can safely handle that new demand may or may not be an easy question to answer. Sometimes the answer point to and electrical panel upgrade.
In addition to age and electrical demand, regular use and the aging process can contribute to a panel replacement making sense. It’s natural for your panel and its internal wiring to slowly loosen up or start to deteriorate, over time. The same can be said for circuit breaker switches inside the panel. If you’re having to reset a breaker or multiple breakers quite often, that’s a sign that it’s time to consult with an experienced electrician. If your panel still has old style replaceable fuses instead of resettable breakers, consider your panel as living ‘on borrowed time’ and we recommend learning about upgrading at your earliest convenience.
In Longmont, you can have full confidence in our electrical department and our Master Electrician at Save Home Heat Company to help you determine the best course of action to keep your home as electrically safe and efficient as possible.
Reasons for replacing your home’s electrical service panel may include:
- Existing electrical panel cannot support current home electrical demand
- Safety concerns
- Loosening internal wiring (usually due to age of the panel)
- Circuit breakers on one or more circuit trip frequently for no discernible reason
- Frequently flickering or dimming lights on multiple electrical circuits
- Electrical service panel, or wiring near the panel, is warm to the touch
- Rust or burn marks inside the panel
- Steady or occasional buzzing sounds coming from the panel
- An experienced, trusted, professional electrician considers the condition or age of your panel to be cause for replacement
- Desire to upgrade to the latest, safest types of electrical breakers that are now required by code in many areas of new homes
Sometimes adding an electrical subpanel, or ‘satellite circuit breaker panel,’ may be a better course of action instead of an electrical panel replacement. Depending on the circumstances, a subpanel can sometimes be added to provide power to a specific area or appliance in your home, safety and convenience being the reasoning. Our team can help you determine if or when adding an electrical subpanel makes sense.
Circuit Breaker Upgrade Considerations
The circuit breakers in your panels can be replaced individually, or several at a time. If you have one or multiple breakers that are being tripped often, and all else checks out ok, replacing them might make sense, provided your electrical panel isn’t a strong candidate for replacement.
For over 40 years, standard switchable circuit breakers have been used in residential service panels, supplanting the now-obsolete fuses that were once prevalent. In 1999, AFCI (arc fault circuit interrupters) breakers began appearing in National Electrical Code (NEC), and in 2017 were required for most rooms and areas in new homes. AFCIs provide an additional level of electrical protection by also detecting and responding to certain conditions that can cause an electrical fire.
Reasons to consider replacing some or all of your electrical circuit breakers include:
- Age of your circuit breakers
- Condition of your circuit breakers
- Breakers hot to the touch, appear discolored, or give off a burnt smell
- Specific breakers tripping frequently, will not reset, and all else checks out ok
- To upgrade to AFCI circuit breakers
A Focus on Safety
Having an electrical panel that is efficient and effective in supporting your home electrical needs is convenient, but our primary focus is ensuring your safety. As a faulty panel can create a potentially dangerous situation, ensuring your electrical panel, breakers, and related wiring are in good condition is crucial to maintaining a safe home.
Whether you’re unsure if the age of your panel makes it due for replacement, have concerns about circuit breakers, or you’re interested in upgrading to AFCI circuit breakers, we are glad to help you explore options in a low-pressure manner. Our electricians are highly experienced and can assist you in determining which, if any, upgrades or replacements make sense to consider for you and your home. No sales hype or agenda, ever.
Professional Electrical Panel Upgrades and Installation in Longmont
From frequently tripping breakers and flickering lights, to homes built before electrical code went thru a series of revisions, there are plenty of good reasons to contact a trusted, professional electrician to inspect your electrical service panel. In Longmont, you can depend on Save Home Heat Company to have your safety and best interests as the focus of all our interactions with you.
To schedule service with our team or learn more about our service panel replacement and other electrical services for Longmont homeowners, please contact us today.
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