Most businesses and homes have an electrical system that includes a circuit panel with circuit breakers, often obsolete circuit breakers. While generally reliable, circuit breakers and panels do wear out over time and require replacement. When replacement is required to help restore proper electrical function, you’ll need to search for evidence that replacement is the solution to the problem.
A poorly installed or worn-out circuit panel can cause more than electrical problems. When a panel goes unreplaced for too long, you can face shock and fire hazard. To know which signs to look for when obsolete circuit breakers and circuit panels need to be replaced, read on below.
Frequent Breaker Tripping
If the breakers in a home trip frequently, this may indicate any number of issues. However, one of the most common causes of frequent tripping is a faulty or old circuit panel that requires replacement. Frequent tripping can warn you that the panel and breakers are no longer functioning correctly, so that action can be taken before the panel becomes potentially hazardous.
A burning smell is one of the most telltale signs that a circuit panel needs replacement or repair as soon as possible. Electrical components that are no longer functionally correctly can become major fire hazards, which can be dangerous in a home or business. A burning smell is usually distinct, acrid, and hard to miss. Signs of burning such as charring may also accompany the smell as well.
Since any of these signs can quickly escalate into a hazard, none of the signs above should ever be ignored.
This is a specific sign with few solutions beyond circuit board replacement. If a breaker gets tripped and won’t stay reset for long, it is an indication that panel replacement is recommended, if not required, in most cases.