Many people do not pay attention to their home’s electrical system, but the panel is one of the most important parts of your home’s electrical infrastructure.
If your electrical panel is over 25 years old, it may be time for an upgrade. This will ensure your home’s safety and increase its value.
Signs of Faulty Wiring
Most homeowners don’t think about their electrical panel, but it’s crucial for keeping your home safe. The panel is linked to your entire electrical system, and if it’s not working properly, it can cause serious problems throughout the house.
One sign of faulty wiring is that it often causes your lights to dim or flicker. Good wiring can do this once in a while, but if they’re frequently doing so it’s an indication that something is wrong with the wires.
Another sign of faulty wiring is that it can sometimes cause sparks at your outlets. This can happen when there are loose or corroded wires.
If you’re noticing frequent sparks, it may be time to replace your electrical panel. The issue could also be a sign of a circuit breaker that’s not tripping regularly.
The electrical panel is the heart of your home’s power system. It receives incoming electricity and distributes it through circuit breakers that control each individual electrical circuit in your house.
When the panel’s wiring is crowded, it can be a safety hazard. An upgrade will remove potential wiring faults and prevent electrical fires.
Overcrowding is a common problem for older homes that have been remodeled multiple times. New connections to outlets, switches, and appliances often fill up the panel.
Another reason for overcrowding is the use of double-tapped breakers. With certain exceptions, circuit breakers should only be connected to one wire.
Some older panels have been designed to allow tandem breakers, also called duplex or half-high breakers, in specific locations. The manufacturers specify how many tandem breakers can be installed in a panel, and where. These breakers are more likely to overheat if they’re not protected by a lockout device.
When you notice a burning smell coming from an electrical panel, it is a big warning sign that something is wrong. If you ignore this odour, it could get worse and cause a fire in your home.
Burning smells can come from a variety of issues, and they often occur when you have an electrical overload or short circuit. Overloads are caused by too many appliances plugged into one circuit.
Short circuits are caused by loose wires touching each other, which creates friction and heats up the part of the wire that touches each other. The wires can then melt and start a fire.
It is always best to have your electrical system inspected regularly by a professional electrician. This will help you avoid these problems and prevent an electrical fire from happening.
Dark Brown or Black Marks on Outlets
If you notice dark brown or black marks on your outlets, that may be a sign of overheating. They can be caused by arcing or by a loose wire connection.
Arcing occurs when an electrical current jumps across a gap between two wires. The spark reaches the metal receptacle box and creates heat. The plastic around the outlet will also melt, creating those burn marks.
The most common reason for this type of occurrence is when a screw holding the wiring onto the outlet works loose. This allows the wires to overheat and potentially start a fire in your home.
If you have these kinds of problems, shut off the power at the circuit breaker, and call a trained electrician right away. They will be able to determine the cause of the faulty outlet and fix it with safety in mind.