An electrical control panel, also known as breaker box, can be defined as the mind and heart of the electrical system at homes as well as industrial environments. It is through this panel that all the different circuits receive power from the electricity provider. Moreover, the panel is also home to the circuit breakers which protect all the circuits from overloads.
While the design of a control panel is simple, there are several problems which can impact its functioning. While many problems can be repaired, in some cases, replacing the control panel is the only safe solution. Let us have a look at five reasons which can require you to replace the panel.
Completely damaged cables
A common reason which requires replacement of electrical control panel is completely damaged cables. While minor damages can be repaired, complete damage means that the panel would no longer be able to deliver the required power to all the different circuits. Loose cables, damaged or worn insulation, non-existent anchors or clamps are some reasons that can damage the cables and require replacement.
Abundance of moisture
The panels are usually installed far away from moist area. However, drainage problems and leakage could bring water near or on the electrical panel. If this happens, make sure that you stay away from the panel and call a professional to repair the damage. Even if you cannot readily see water on the panel or moisture, there are a few signs like rust stains on panel box and white corrosion on cables which suggest presence or water or excess moisture. Panels that are damaged due to water require replacement.
Poor quality of panel
It is important to make sure that you install panel from a reputed manufacturer. There are a number of cases in the past where manufacturers have followed poor manufacturing practices and created faulty panels. Common problems in such panels include breakers not tripping when they are required to, improper installation due to incorrect design and breakers getting damaged easily. Rather than getting such panels repaired, it is better to replace them.
Another common reason for replacing control panel is crackling sound from the panel. The sound can be a result of a major malfunction or damage and can cause fires. Consult a professional first to know the reason for the sound. If it is some minor damage, get the panel repaired if it is something major, replacing the panel entirely is a safer option.
Many customized and old panels do not meet the standards of National Electric Code. This means that they also fail to meet some fire codes. Older panels with damaged or worn out components are a major fire hazard. If you have been using a control panel for several years, maybe it’s time to upgrade the panel.
Nothing is more important than the safety of your home or workplace. If you can relate to any of the reasons above, better get the control panel replaced to avoid running into any kind of major calamity.