The Biggest Problems You’ll Run into When Renovating an Older Home

Old electrical wiring can be a safety hazard and will need to be brought up to code. Homes in the 1920s didn’t have hair dryers, and even something as small as that can draw more power than old household electrical systems can handle. Old wiring is also just an inconvenience: If you’ve ever lost power when running the microwave and the coffeemaker at the same time, you know what I mean. You might need to change ungrounded 2-prong outlets to 3-prong outlets, and rewire the house to get rid of old knob-and-tube wiring that can start a fire. Depending on your needs and the appliances you own, you may even need to upgrade modern wiring to support new appliances, computers, entertainment systems, and other projects.

The older a home is and the more times it’s been sold or changed hands, the more likely any changes to the home won’t have been in keeping with the original design of the house. It’s best to err on the side of caution call AJP Electric at 1-860-875-7755 for a free consultation. We can tell you what to expect and give you a plan that is affordable and safe for you and your family.

Do you need an interlocking system for your generator?

Everyone knows what a generator is, but do you know what an interlocking system is and how you and your family can benefit from one? A generator interlock kit is a device designed to allow safe backfeeding of a home through a portable generator during power outages. This eliminates unsafe generator backfeeding situations that could potentially electrocute power linemen or destroy the generator.

Confused? Well, to understand the benefits you have to understand what backfeeding means. Backfeeding occurs when electric power is being induced into the local power grid. Power flows in the opposite direction from its usual flow. Not only is this unsafe, but is illegal!

Some people have a manual transfer switch, but the problem is that you’ll need extension cords to connect all of your appliances to your generator. Running these cords through your home creates the hazards of tripping and falling, and even causing a fire. A big issue with transfer switches is that furnaces and water heaters can’t be connected by cord so these devices simply won’t work until power is restored.

Thankfully, there’s a solution – a way to connect your generator to your panel without a transfer switch: An interlock kit. The Interlock Kit is more affordable than transfer switches. AJP Electric can easily mount an interlock device to your existing electrical panel. If you need to upgrade your electrical pane, we can do that too! We can even help you decide what generator to order. We can take care of everything for you, typically in one day or less.

Call us at 1-860-875-7755 or fill out our form to find out how we can help you prepare for any electrical eventuality.

How to know when to upgrade your electrical panel?

When you upgrade your home you have to consider if your home can handle the growing demand for electricity. A new central air conditioning system, for example, will need 3,000 to 5,000 watts to function effectively.

The electric system in a house reflects when it was built or last time it was rewired. Houses built or rewired more than 30 years ago typically have a 60 to 100-amp service. Amps are a measure of the quantity of electric power. Newer homes may have 150- or 200-amp service. The increase in amps over the years has kept pace with the number of new electrical appliances.

The amps listed on the main circuit breaker in the panel box determine the maximum amount the house can safely use. Each circuit in the house is also rated by amps. If the power demand for a circuit approaches the amps the circuit is rated for, the circuit breaker will trip and shut down power to the circuit, because there is a danger of the wiring overheating.

If you are thinking of adding a large electric appliance such as an air conditioner, electric range, a washer & dryer or hot tub where you did not have one before, you should determine if your house can handle the increased electric load.You should also consider upgrading your system if you are planning to add living space and you cannot meet the new electric demand by adding additional circuits to the current panel box.

If you hear hissing from the box, circuit breakers trip repeatedly or you have an old-fashioned fuse box rather than a panel box it’s time to upgrade. The best way to determine if you require an upgrade is to ask AJP Electric. Call us at 1-860-875-7755 and we’ll give a free consultation.