Electrical Service Panel Work by Professionals
Of the many different electrical works a do-it-yourselfer may perform in his/her home, those that involve the electrical service panel should be rather left to the expertise of a licensed electrician who has the skills and experience in this specific area. The reason for this is that it is always dangerous to work on the electrical service panel. Note that a shock from the electrical lugs – metal fittings to which electrical wires are connected – can seriously hurt or even kill you.
Although a “hands off” policy is highly advised to homeowners in situations involving the panel, they are encouraged to learn as much as they can about this essential part of their home’s electrical system. For example, they have to know exactly what a service panel is and what it does.
An electrical panel is the modern version of the 60-ampere fuse box, which contains 4 fuses. It serves to provide homes with 100, 200, or more amperes of power, which comes into homes from what is called a service drop. From there, it connects to the service panel’s lugs and is distributed throughout the house through individual circuits.
There may be an instance when it becomes necessary for a homeowner to work on the inside of the electrical service panel, as in the case when he/she needs to remove and replace a circuit breaker. Inside the electrical service panel, three main features can be found: about 20 to 30 circuit breakers or spaces for circuit breakers; lugs that connect to the service drop; and wires.
Upgrading electrical service panel is a service provided by all electrical contractors. At some point, a homeowner may need to have his/her home’s electrical services upgraded to increase its capacity. Many of the cases involving homes that burned down were caused by neglected electrical service panels that had long needed changing or upgrading, but which were ignored by the homeowners.
You have to remember that your home, like all the other homes, has limited electrical capacity. As years passed, you surely had added more appliances or other electrical items in your home. If you continue to add such stuff but fail to have your electrical service panel upgraded, there is the strong likelihood that your home and everything in it will turn to ashes.
In upgrading or changing an electrical service panel, the power supply that comes into your home does not get altered. The things that actually get changed are: the connections with the power grid on your home; the distribution panel; the cables and meter; and the grounding system. Once your home’s electrical power capacity is increased as a result of a panel upgrade, it allows for more circuits and thus more electrical items to be installed and utilized.
Convenience and safety are obviously the two main reasons why a homeowner may require an electrical service panel upgrade. Again, these can be fully realized only by hiring the services of a professional electrical contractor, which has licensed electricians highly qualified for the job.