Besides the significant power outages due to maintenance by the utility crew, accidents, or storms, you may have encountered a minor power outage in your house. If the lights in your house in Myrtle Beach, SC, suddenly go out or an appliance stops, you could have a small power outage. To understand the mystery behind these mini-outages, you need to understand the main electrical services panel.
For starters, an electrical breaker, panel, or box, is the distribution center for all the electricity you use. Understanding this electrical equipment’s basics is essential to ensure your home is well-lit and keep your family safe. Continue reading to learn more about the electrical panel.
What Is an Electrical Panel?
An electrical panel is a metal box usually built on the far end of your home. You might get overwhelmed by a network of wires, switches, bolts, and labels in front of you when looking at the panel box. Surprisingly, the anatomy of the breaker box is so simple and has all your home’s breaker switches.
They are made to automatically shut off in an event with too much current running through them. Also, inside the panel, you will find the circuit breaker regulating the power throughout the house. Plus, it has individual breakers responsible for transmitting electricity to a single part of your home. Each of the individual breakers has labels that show the area of the home it controls.
The main breaker in the panel can be used to cut off the main feed of electricity. Also, it can be used to check the amperage of your home’s electrical services. Due to the technicalities involved in installing a breaker box, you need to hire a licensed contractor in Myrtle Beach, SC, to handle the work.
How Do I Locate the Breaker Box?
A breaker box is typically gray, and the electrical services personnel usually mount it on a wall. It can also be placed in any out-of-the-way part of your house, including a laundry room, garage, pantry, basement, or storage room. For ancient houses, the panel box can be found out of the house.
In most apartments, you’ll find it right inside, either near the entrance or behind the door. Most homes have a single electrical services panel, while others have multiple subpanels, especially those with many living units.
How Does a Breaker Box Work?
In an event where the circuit becomes overloaded, circuit breakers shut off. Breakers are safety devices that protect electrical appliances or the entire house. They are customized to allow a certain amount of current to flow at a given time and may shut off if you plug in many devices in one circuit.
Also, they have voltage ratings. For example, a single circuit breaker gives 120 volts, enough for small appliances like TV and lights. For more extensive appliances that utilize a lot of power, they use double circuit breakers rated for 240 volts. Other devices such as air conditioners and refrigerators might have their breakers.
If a breaker trips, you need to reset it by flipping the switch. But what if it failed to trip? Dangerous! It could start fires or electrocute someone. To avoid such horrible incidences, always have a competent electrical professional regularly maintain your home’s electrical system.!
Why Do I Need To Upgrade My Panel Box?
If you are not receiving enough power for all your electrical needs, you might consider having an upgrade of the breaker box. Also, if you live in an older house with fuses instead of breakers, installing a new electrical services panel is wise.
Homes using less than 100-amp services ought to be upgraded as many modern ones are running at a capacity of 100-amp, which is the minimum requirement by The National Electrical Code (NEC). Again, if you have 100-amp services already, you might think of getting an upgrade of 200-amp. You should call an electrician to check the usage of your electrical services if you feel that the electrical panel is insufficient.
Maintenance of the Electrical Panel
Just like every appliance, regular maintenance saves you a lot of trouble in the long run. To prevent dust or any other damage, always ensure that the cover of the electrical panel box is closed. However, doing this alone isn’t enough. It would help if you got a qualified technician to inspect the panel regularly, at least once every three years.
The experts will check the connections, inspect the breakers, and conduct a thermal check to look for any temperature irregularities. Often, electrical disparities and high temperatures go hand in hand. If you place your hand on the cover of the electrical panel and it is hot, shut off the main breaker and contact your electrician right away. Under normal circumstances, the panel should feel cool.
What Is the Life Expectancy of an Electrical Panel?
Most circuit breakers have an expected lifespan of approximately 20 to 40 years. Loose connections and operating above the required capacity can reduce their lifespan. Also, exposure to humid conditions can result in corrosion. Additionally, if dust gets to the switches and wiring, the life expectancy of your breaker could reduce.
If the electrical panels are frequently inspected and serviced, they can last longer. If you’re considering electrical remodels for your Myrtle Beach, SC home, you should not forget to upgrade your panel before it dies.
Reach Out to Mister Sparky of Myrtle Beach For a Service Panel Upgrade
Electrical panel installations, repairs, and upgrades are critical to entrust to any person. You should hire a company that’s qualified and certified to provide electrical services. With all your electrical concerns, you can trust Mister Sparky of Myrtle Beach.
Our professionals stay relevant to the latest trends in electrical services and are available 24/7. Give us a ring today.