Being a homeowner requires a lot of maintenance. However, taking on any electrical project requires knowledge, patience, and skill. There aren’t many projects that a homeowner cannot tackle on their own. Attempting to replace an electrical panel might not be the best do-it-yourself project idea. Can a homeowner replace electrical panel? Hire a licensed electrician. Building code and the National electrical code must be followed.
Let’s take a closer look below at why a homeowner should not change their electrical panel.
What Is An Electrical Panel
Electrical panels are also known as fuse boxes, breaker panels, metal boxes, or breaker boxes. The sole purpose is to house the circuit breakers and be the main source of electrical distribution for the home. Your electrical panel connects the home’s wiring to your local city or county electrical service. Circuit breakers are installed to protect the home from damage and electrical fire.
Each circuit breaker is labeled so that the homeowner is aware of what outlet or appliances are utilizing that circuit. Electrical panels are typically located in a garage, however, they can also be placed in the basement or a closet. In some cases, the electrical panel is installed on the back exterior of your home.
When Do I Replace It
Understanding when to replace your electrical panel is the first step in determining if you can do the job as a homeowner. Let’s take a look below at the signs an electrical panel should be replaced.
- Weather damage – if you notice that your panel is breaking down, rusting, or just old, it is time to replace it.
- Power failure – if you are experiencing a lot of power failures due to insufficient power, it is time to replace the electrical panel.
- Electrical shock – noticing that your appliances are giving you a shock or feeling hot to the touch, means it is time to replace the electrical panel.
- Blown fuses – the moment when your fuses are blown, breaker trips, or wires become overheated means it is time to replace the electrical panel.
How Much Does It Cost
Believe it or not, the cost to replace an electrical panel ranges drastically. Depending on the size of the panel, the number of circuit breakers, and the hourly rate of your electrician can determine how much your electrical panel replacement will cost. If you are hoping to do the project on your own, you are likely going to spend around $1,200. The national average cost range to replace your electrical panel is between $530 and $2,000.
Other Recommended Maintenance
Now that you have read up on whether or not a homeowner can change an electrical panel, you should consider reading up on how to tell if a circuit breaker is bad. Consequently, you might not need to replace the whole panel. A simple circuit breaker replacement might suffice.
Next, determine how many GFCI outlets you can have on a circuit. Knowing this information allows you to ensure the right safety measures are taken so that you do not overload your circuits.
Lastly, if your lights are flickering, be sure to check the bulbs. Flickering lights could cause a fire if the cause is an electrical wiring issue.
When Do I Call A Professional
Often homeowners love to do their projects. However, upgrading your electrical panel or simply replacing your breaker box not only requires a permit but should be done by a professional electrician. If you aren’t sure who to call, reach out to your local home inspection team. They can inspect your electrical systems and check your home’s electrical panel during a full home inspection. Also, they can refer you to a reputable professionally licensed electrician to complete the electrical work.
Replacing a light bulb, appliance, or electrical outlet is a project that many homeowners can handle on their own. When it comes to replacing your full electrical system, this likely isn’t a project for a homeowner. It certainly isn’t a quick or easy project. Knowing what to do and the order in which to do it is very important for staying safe. Be sure to call your local home inspection team to inspect your entire electrical system and let you know when to replace the electrical panel. Call Waypoint Property Inspection to inspect your home in Tampa, St. Petersburg, Lakeland, Orlando, Palm Beach, Ft. Lauderdale, and surrounding areas.