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What is a main electrical service and panel?
The main panel is where the primary power source is distributed to the branch circuits throughout the house or building.
Why do you need a main panel?
An electrical system needs a main panel to break up the power supply of 100 amps or larger down to branch circuits. Branch circuit requirements start at 15 amps and can go as large as required by the specific item and voltage.
Reasons for upgrading your main electrical service and panel?
Old main panels have limitations on available space to add circuits or they have fuses (some insurance carriers will not insure a property that has fuses). Some old panels have had circuits added and have maxed out (most old panels are maxed out when the original construction was completed). Many old panels are of inferior quality and simply stop working and need to be replaced.
An electric service upgrade is often recommended or required to increase the capacity of the existing electrical service. With all the new appliances and technical devices we now have in our homes, we find that older homes just don’t have sufficient power available to handle the increased demand. Therefore, a "service change" is required. This may include not only upgrading your electric panel, but upgrading your meter socket, the wire between the meter and panel, the wire between the utility and the meter and the grounding system as well. A panel upgrade or replacement is usually required to alleviate a problem with the existing panel. Sometimes a breaker might overheat to the point that the buss bar in a panel gets burned. The conductors between the meter and panel may become loose and burn out the main lugs, especially common when aluminum conductors were used. Other common reasons to change out an existing panel are due to obsolescence and outdated technology. Split-buss panels, cheap builder-grade panels, panels contaminated by water, paint and corrosive environments are often candidates for replacement. Panels long ago manufactured by Zinsco and FPE have many issues and are considered a hazard by many in the industry.
The professional’s electricians at Expert Electric only use the highest quality panels (load centers) manufactured by Federal, Square D or Cutler Hammer for your panel change out or upgrade. Every panel that we install has a 1year warranty on the equipment. but typically these panels should last up to 30-40 years without any problems. The bottom line is we make sure the heart of your electrical system, the electrical panel, will be trouble free for years and years to come.