3 Signs an Electrical Panel Needs Repair or Replacement

When is it Time to Call an Electrician?

An electrical panel, also known as a breaker box or breaker panel, is the main distribution point for a home's electrical system. It regulates the amount of power that flows through the house, protects wiring and appliances from overload or short circuits, and provides a safe place to disconnect the power in an emergency. 

It is vital to ensure that an electrical panel is in good working order and up-to-code, as a malfunctioning system can cause a fire or other serious damage. This blog will share three common signs that indicate the electrical panel may need repair or replacement and should be inspected by an electrician. 

Lights Flickering or Dimming

lightIn some cases, a light flickering or being less bright than usual can be simply caused by an old light bulb that needs to be replaced. However, it may also indicate a problem with the home's electrical panel or wiring, especially if the lights dim or flicker when an appliance is being used or has just been added. This indicates too much electricity is being drawn from the circuit. 

If homeowners notice this sign of electrical panel issues, it’s crucial to get it checked out right away, as these problems can lead to hazardous conditions and even fire risks if not addressed properly. Therefore, ensure that any flickering or dim lights are inspected along with the electrical panel by a qualified electrician to ensure the home's safety.

Burning Smells

A burning smell from the electrical panel is a sign of danger and should never be ignored. This smell indicates an issue with the wiring in the home, which can quickly become a serious fire hazard if not properly addressed. If the insulation around the wiring begins to melt, it can also spread a strong odor of burning plastic throughout the house.

Overheating wires can cause widespread damage to the house as they heat up and create sparks or arcing, potentially sparking an electrical fire. Any time there is an overheating issue in the electrical panel, it's essential to have it addressed immediately by a licensed electrician. This can help prevent further damage to the electrical panel and wiring and keep the home and its inhabitants safe from potential fires.

The Electrical Panel is Old

panelElectrical panels are the central nerve centers of a home’s wiring and distribution system. Depending on their usage, they typically last 25 to 40 years, but eventually, they will need to be updated or replaced due to age or general wear and tear. Over time, components can become corroded and break down from exposure to extreme temperatures and other elements. Additionally, as technology advances, so do the electrical needs of the home and its appliances, making older panels obsolete.

When an old panel struggles with power demands, it is essential to upgrade or replace it. Signs of trouble include flickering lights and circuit breakers tripping regularly. So if homeowners suspect their electrical panel may be beyond its years, don’t wait too long to get it checked out. An upgrade or replacement will keep the household safe and save homeowners from some severe headaches in the future.

About Trustworthy Electric 

Trustworthy Electric has nearly three decades of experience serving Montgomery and the surrounding areas. They provide upfront pricing, on-time service, and fully stocked trucks. Call them today for electrical panel repair or replacement in Montgomery, AL

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Three Signs of Electrical Panel Repair (and Other Important Tips)

How To Tell if the Home’s Electrical Panel Needs Servicing 

There are countless signs that an electrical panel needs servicing by a professional. While homeowners may be tempted to brush off these signs, the electrical panel could pose a safety hazard if left ignored. Even a small spark could turn into an electrical fire. 

Thankfully, there are three main ways a homeowner can tell if their electrical panel needs servicing. This includes flickering lights, burning smells from the panel, and learning the electrical panel’s age.  

The Home’s Lights Are Flickering 

If someone notices that lights are flickering, they should first try replacing the bulb. If this doesn’t work, they should consider reaching out to a professional. A faulty electrical panel might cause lights to flicker because: 

  • There are loose connections inside the panel: This requires more than just finding the loose connection and tightening it. It means cutting off power to the home and assessing the situation. One may need to replace the connector itself if it’s too old. 
  • A faulty fuse: A fuse might need replacing if the lights in the home are flickering or take too long to turn on. 
  • Oxidation or rust: Electrical panels in older homes will inevitably experience some wear and tear. This could manifest as rusted wires, oxidation, or corrosion-–all of which can interrupt the flow of electricity.

A severe problem might warrant electrical panel replacement. If a replacement is recommended, it shouldn't be put off because doing so could put the home and residents’ safety at risk. 


Burning Smells Coming from the Electrical Panel 

Each wire in an electrical panel is insulated with rubber or another substance, preventing electricity from escaping the wire and causing fires. However, if a wire gets too hot, this could cause the insulation to melt and create a foul-smelling odor. 

Burnt smells can also come from the electrical panel’s breaker. In either case, this requires immediate attention. Excessive heat could damage the electrical system and pose the risk of electrical fires. 

The Electrical Panel Is Old (or Original to an Old Property) 

panelElectrical panels don’t last forever. They generally can last 25 to 40 years with the appropriate conditions and maintenance. Sometimes, an electrical panel won’t last 25 years if it endures above-average wear and tear, which may include: 
  • Frequent power surges 
  • Constantly blown fuses
  • Wires with chronically burnt insulation 
  • Severe weather conditions, such as hurricanes or blizzards
  • Water damage 

Electrical panels can also suffer physical damage if not maintained properly. For instance, if an electrical panel is located in the garage and a ladder falls on top of it, this could cause serious damage. A trained professional can replace electrical panels and recommend measures to ensure the new one lasts for many years to come. 

About Trustworthy Electric

Trustworthy Electric has provided their neighbors in Montgomery, AL, with expert electrical services since 1994. They offer upfront pricing, on-time service, and military discounts. They also have a problem solver guarantee that they will fix the problem that same day or you don’t pay. Call them today for electrical services in Montgomery, AL.

The Common Signs You Upgrade Your Electrical Panel

What To Look for Before Upgrading the Electrical Panel

At its core, the electrical system in the home is relatively simple in functionality. It is composed of a wiring system, the electrical box, and the electricity supplied by the electrical company. 

The electrical panel is an essential part of the system. It is the vehicle that drives the electricity from the supply company to the wires within the home. Without a properly working electrical panel, the home cannot be considered safe for function. That is why it is crucial to know what signs to look for to decide when a panel upgrade is needed. 

Homeowners should continue reading below to learn more about the common signs that it is time for an upgrade. 

The Home Experiences Faulty Wiring

electrical panel

Installing electrical wiring is one of the more complex and dangerous systems to install. It is extremely easy to mess up, and when the wires aren’t installed properly, it could lead to all kinds of problems. Not only that, but when wiring starts to go bad, it can pose a threat to the electrical box as well, which leads to the risk of fires. 

Some common signs of faulty wiring are: 

  • The circuit breaker trips frequently
  • Homeowners hear a buzzing noise frequently
  • The wall near the electrical panel is hot
  • They see smoke on the wall behind the electrical panel
  • Frayed or chewed wires

Homeowners Want To Install New Appliances

thumbs up

Most appliances are installed without a second thought to the electrical panel. In reality, though, these new appliances require more energy from the electrical panel, which stresses the box out. 

An electrical panel that is overworked is a dangerous electrical panel. When it is overworked, it increases the risk that a home could fall victim to an electrical fire. Before investing in new appliances, it is recommended that homeowners call a professional electrician to come out and see if the electrical panel can handle the power needed to accommodate the new appliances. 

If the electrical panel is aged, it is almost guaranteed that they will need to upgrade before buying any new appliances. 

Circuit Breaker Installation

fixing an electrical panel

Once a homeowner determines that the panel is too old or beyond repair, the circuit breaking installation begins. Because the breaker panel is the electrical hub for the entire home, getting the installation done right is essential. Circuit breaker installation is quick and painless when homeowners have a professional at their side. Electrical work is one of the most dangerous professions out there, so trying to work on a home’s electrical panel without the right certifications is highly discouraged.

About Trustworthy Electric Inc.

Trustworthy Electric Inc. is always arrive on time and ready to provide expert electrical panel services in Montgomery, AL. They offer upfront pricing, so homeowners are never surprised when the bill comes. Their experts are experienced, licensed, and insured, providing customers with the knowledge that all work done in the home is of the highest quality.