Do you know the age of your home’s electrical panel? Is your electric panel primarily a breaker box system or are you still using fuses? Do you have sub-panels for outside additions, such as your garage, pool, or spa? These questions can help you decide if you need to replace your home’s electrical panel. Let’s address them one at a time.
The age of your home’s electrical panel
Age is one of the primary factors in determining whether it’s time for an electrical panel replacement. Age can mean a lot of things, so let’s look at all of those individually.
• Power demands: If you keep blowing fuses or tripping breakers, it’s possible your electrical panel needs an overhaul. See our example below on microwaves and air fryers.
• Older wiring: If your home was built before the 1960s, and it hasn’t been rewired, you should consider doing so. Along with that would come a replacement for your electric panel.
• Newer standards: Breaker boxes installed in the 1980s may no longer comply with modern electrical standards and should be replaced.
Breaker box versus fuses
Breaker boxes are a modern replacement for the older fuse box-style of electrical panels. In the latter, fuses would blow. Once the power demand exceeds the circuit’s capacity, a tiny wire within the fuse would break. If you didn’t have a replacement fuse, you were out of luck!
Breaker boxes are a simpler method. The electric panel simply kills the power to that circuit. Once you’ve remediated the problem (perhaps you’re running an air fryer at the same time as your microwave, which is too much power), you can run to your electric panel, flip the breaker off, and then back on to restore power to that circuit. If you’re still on a fuse box, it’s time for an electrical panel replacement.
The importance of having sub-panels for your primary electrical panel Of special note is the need for sub-panels. These are a way to extend your home’s electric system. Outside additions such as pools and spas will most likely need a sub panel, especially if your existing circuits are maxed out. A garage will almost universally have its separate electric panel as a sub-panel to your main home. And if you choose to install an EV charging station in your garage, you’ll definitely want a sub-panel for this fixture.
Our team can help you replace and update your electric panel setup The answer to our original implied question, should you replace your electric panel, is going to be dependent on the answers to each of our three points above. An extremely old panel may no longer meet your home’s power needs. Breaker boxes are a better solution for the 21st-century home than the aging fuse box style of electric panels. And of course, the more additions you have the more likely it is you’ll need a sub-electrical panel.
Regardless of the age, style, or extensions of your electric panel, we can help you make the right decision on choosing a replacement. Contact us HERE for a free quote or call your local Yoder Electric sales office to learn more!