Learn more about your electric panel.

What is a panel?

The panel has several different aliases: breaker box, electric box, electric board, breaker board, service box…All of which describe the same thing. We refer to it as the “panel”.

Your panel, depending on when your home was built, can be in a variety of different places. In newer homes, it’s probably in your garage or outside, in older homes it may be in a closet or room. No matter where it is, we recommend that you keep the area easily accessible, with no less than 3ft of clearance around it. You should know where your panel is, and know how to operate it in case of an emergency.

The panel controls the electricity coming from the utility company into your home. More specifically, the breakers that are attached to each circuit regulate the amount of electricity or AMPS. If a problem arises like an overloaded circuit, the breaker will trip, thus preventing any electricity flowing into that circuit. Once the issue is resolved, the breaker may be turned back on to enable electricity to flow throughout the circuit again.

The panel is the heart of any electrical system. A good panel can prevent serious damage and protect against hazards. If you are unsure about the state of your panel, give us a call today and we will be more than happy to discuss it with you.

You may think about replacing your panel if you observe any of the following conditions:

  • It is older than 15 years – if you are unsure of the age of your panel, what is the age of your home?
  • There is corrosion visible anywhere on the panel or panel cover;
  • Several different brands of breakers are installed – look for different colors or manufacturer labels
  • Rusting has occurred or is visible anywhere in the panel.

If you do observe any of these conditions, please call us at Master Electrical Service at 801-543-2222.

Is your panel safe?

If your house is over 30 years old you need to see this link. Panels are not like a fine wine.  They don’t get better with age.  They do wear out.  Panels that were installed over 30 years ago were designed for the technology of that day.  Since then the advancements in our comfort have been made.  We now have many appliances and comforts that we didn’t have back then.  The number one thing is air conditioners.  If you have added an A/C unit since your house was built you may be at risk. Other things that our homes weren’t wired for is hair blow dryers.  These things can pull up to 15 amps. That’s crazy! On top of all this, these panels have many design flaws that present dangers to you and your family.  In fact, Federal Pacific Panels have lost their UL listing.  This website is full of great information.

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