ACI Northwest Blog: Posts Tagged ‘Circuit Breaker Panel’

How to Reset Your Electrical Panel

Monday, September 28th, 2015

When there is a power outage in your neighborhood, the only way to restore power to your home is to have a generator installed as a backup. But when the power goes out in your home only or in a specific part of your home, there is usually an easy fix. Resetting the electrical panel or a specific breaker therein allows you to resume daily tasks as usual.

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Signs It’s Time to Upgrade Your Electrical Panel

Monday, January 26th, 2015

The electrical power flowing into your home from the main electrical line is controlled by your electrical panel.

Like a dam controls water dispersal, so, too, does your electrical panel, by using a system of pre-set circuit breakers that are equipped to distribute a specific amount of power to the various systems of your home.

As such, the electrical panel has a maximum limit to the amount of power it will provide to your home. This means that should you need to draw more power, you will most likely have to upgrade your electrical panel.

Any work involving the electrical system of your home in Coeur d’Alene should always be handled by an electrical services professional, and the experts at ACI Northwest have the training and certification necessary to handle any kind of electrical services you may need.

Reasons to Upgrade Your Electrical Panel

Here are some reasons it’s important to upgrade your electrical panel:

  • You keep tripping breakers – if you keep tripping circuit breakers every time you have more than one major appliance operating, this is a good sign that you are drawing too much power from your electrical box.
  • You’ve expanded your home – your home’s electrical box was wired to accommodate the electrical power it needed when you purchased it; if you have expanded your home, your electrical panel should expand with it.
  • The panel has low amperage – the average household electrical draw per circuit is typically between 120 to 240 volts; if you don’t have enough amperage to support your systems, your panel should be upgraded as soon as possible.
  • You’re adding a major appliance or system – if you are adding a major appliance, such as a dryer, or a new whole-home system like air conditioning, your electrical panel has to be able to handle the power load.

Browning, dimming, flickering and tripping circuits are all signs that there may be a problem with your home’s electrical panel.

Don’t wait until a serious problem develops – call ACI Northwest and schedule an appointment for electrical services in your Coeur d’Alene home today.

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Signs You Should Replace Your Circuit Breaker Panel

Friday, August 15th, 2014

If you have a circuit breaker panel for your home’s electrical system, then you are already ahead of a house that still uses an older fuse box. However, a circuit breaker panel is still subject to the pressures and wear of time, and eventually you may need to have a new unit installed. This job requires professional electricians to handle: don’t try to purchase a circuit breaker panel and put it in yourself, since you will risk high voltage shocks, a poorly functioning panel, and fire hazards from bad wiring.

Call ACI Northwest in Spokane, WA for electrical service that will replace your current circuit breaker panel. We provide a full range of services for home electricity, and we are on call 24 hours a day so we’re always there when you need us.

Warning signs to replace your circuit breaker panel

  • Breakers are tripping more often: Although frequently tripping circuit breakers can indicate a number of electrical problems, such as power surges and bad circuity, they can also warn that the electrical panel is wearing down and no longer functioning correctly. Call an electrician to look into the problem and see if the panel needs replacement.
  • Circuit breakers will not remain reset: This is a more specific warning than the above: if you reset a tripped breaker, but it will not stay that way for more than a few minutes, it most likely indicates that the panel itself is at fault and needs the experienced eyes of a professional electrician.
  • Burning smells from the panel: A major danger from a circuit breaker going bad is that it can cause fires inside the panel. If you notice an acrid smell from the panel, or other signs of burning, such as breakers that are hot to the touch or charring around the breakers, then you need to call for electrical help immediately and have a new panel put it.

Always, always, call on licensed electricians for work on the circuits, outlets, switches, and other components in your electrical system. This will ensure that the job is done right and you and your family is kept safe.

If you notice any of the above signs, or if you simply feel that your panel is too old to safely do its job, call for electrical service in Spokane, WA from ACI Northwest. We work hard every day to bring our customers complete satisfaction.

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How Does a Circuit Breaker Panel Work?

Friday, August 16th, 2013

The circuit breaker controls the flow of electricity into your home, ensuring that you can access electrical power safely and securely. Without it, we wouldn’t be able to use the lights and appliances that define our modern world, and places like Spokane would still be conducting logging operations in the dark. But while most of us know how to check the circuit breaker panel when the electrical power goes out somewhere, comparatively few of us know how the circuit breaker panel actually works.

Electricity arrives from your city’s local power grid into the breaker box via a main circuit, which consists of a number of smaller circuits. The hot wire, on one end of the circuit, carries the electrical current, while the neutral wire is grounded in the earth.  Normally those two wires never come into contact with each other. When they do, they create a huge charge in the wires, which can cause them to overheat and start a fire.

The circuit breakers halt that process before it reaches dangerous levels. Older homes used fuses, which would get blown whenever the current rose too high and open the circuit. That kept the wire from becoming damaged and the surrounding materials from catching fire.

Fuses, however, had a one-shot shelf life and couldn’t be re-used after they were blown. The circuit breakers worked along the same principles, only they won’t disintegrate the way the fuses would. The breaker contains a switch, connected to an electromagnet, with the hot wire linked to the switch’s two ends. When the current gets too high, it magnetizes the magnet, which pulls on the switch, breaking the circuit and shutting off the electricity.

Circuit breaker panels work that way to keep your home safe. While you can check to see if they’ve been triggered and reset them if the power goes out, it pays to contact a professional Spokane electrician if you need to conduct any more in-depth operations. The electricians at ACI Northwest can handle electrical issues with your circuit breaker panel in Spokane and throughout the surrounding communities. Contact us today to set up an appointment.

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