Wednesday, July 6, 2011

When to upgrade your electrical service.


Replace your electrical every 30-40 years

Picture here is an electrical service installed in the 1980's. That makes this electrical service fall into the window of time where it is best to be replaced before it starts to cause the home owner problems. A close look at the case you can see where the paint is pealing and rust is starting. Corrosion starts to set into your electrical equipment after about 30 years of use. When your panel gets this old it is the time to plan on replacing it. Not after it has started to fail.

You can also see that the circuit breakers are also miss matched. There are some newer 20amp and 30 amp  circuits but there are still some original 15 amp circuits with faded labels. Circuit breaker that are 30 years old may not function as reliably as newer breakers.  This panel also has mini-sized breaker installed. These are the breakers are the ones with the 1/2 sized handles. They are used when space is not available for normal sized breakers and are a sign that should tell you that your panel is getting over loaded.

This is a close up of the ground. New panel will have two grounds. The new grounds will run directly to your water meter and to a ground rod.
Here there is no ground wire directly from the panel to the water meter. That is because when this electrical service was installed the electricians use the plumbing pipes for grounding. In a newer electrical service this is no longer allowed.

The water meter was bonded with this wire strap. This connector is now oxidizing and turning green. This corrosion can keep a home from having a acquitted ground. Grounding failures can be dangerous. Newer electrical service all have two grounds. The ground wire are run directly from the ground buss to the ground source and have better mechanical connectors.

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4 comments:

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