The electrical system in your house plays an integral role in its functioning. For the most part, it works without much thought on your part. However, there are times when you may need to give it a little attention. here are four times to consider upgrading your electrical service.
1. You Have an Older Home
Older houses may have a ton of charm, but they can also have some very dangerous electrical and wiring conditions, too. One key indicator of this is that you have a fuse box instead of a circuit panel. Not only will you not be able to run a house full of modern electronics, but you are also putting your safety at risk. Fuses can easily catch fire when overloaded, instead of tripping like a circuit breaker.
2. Your Wiring Is Outdated
If your home was built between 1965 and 1975, there is a good chance it has aluminum wiring. While aluminum is fine in and of itself, anywhere it connects to a fixture, outlet, or switch is a potential fire hazard. Aluminum expands and contracts at a much higher rate than other metals, so connections often fail. If you suspect your home has aluminum wiring, it is a good idea to contact a professional specializing in electrical service upgrades Philadelphia PA to discuss your options.
Materials aren’t the only reason your wiring may be out of date. You could also have too many outlets on a single breaker or insufficient capacity to support modern electronics. In some cases, you may need to upgrade wiring to support 3-prong grounded outlets. This has been the standard for decades, but may not the present in older homes.
3. You Are Doing a Home Renovation
When you undertake a major home renovation, the project should be done to current building codes. Depending on where you live, that could mean a dedicated breaker for major appliances, GFCI outlets in bathrooms (or throughout the whole house), or the need to upgrade an existing panel. Any wiring will need to be up to the current electrical code to pass inspection.
4. Your Current Panel Is Overloaded
You may just have too many things running in the house for your current panel to support the load. In this case, you may need to upgrade to a larger circuit panel. A few signs your panel is overloaded include:
- Sparks or shocks when you touch an electric receptacle
- Lights that dim when an appliance kicks on
- A burning odor coming from outlets
- Breakers that trip constantly
Maintaining your home’s electrical system is important for ensuring your family’s safety. Knowing the signs you need to upgrade can help you avoid any problems.