How do you know when it is time to upgrade your electrical panel? When you upgrade your home you have to consider if your home can handle the growing demand for electricity. 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. A new central air conditioning system, for example, will need 3,000 to 5,000 watts to function effectively. 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.
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 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.