Written by Larry Cook

Why Your Home Needs a New Electric Panel – Part 1

If you are a homeowner having problems with your electric systems or appliances, this article will explain why an electrical panel upgrade may be the solution. Always work with a licensed and experienced electrician for the best results and your family’s safety.


The electrical panel is the heart of a home’s electrical system, the center which connects utility wires from the exterior to wires within a home’s interior.

An electrical panel is also called the main breaker box or fuse box. This is the location in your home where you can switch breakers off and on to resume power after a circuit breaker has been tripped. They are typically found inside the garage, within a utility room, or attached to a wall outside the home.

Usually, homeowners do not have to think much about their electrical panels, but there may come a time when it becomes necessary to perform a replacement or upgrade.

Reasons a New Electrical Panel May Be Needed

The expected service life of a circuit breaker panel ranges from 25 to 40 years. Aside from the age of the unit, the following topics will help you determine whether or not you need a new electrical panel.

20 to 30 Year Old Homes

Homes older than 20-30 years may need an electrical panel upgrade. Older houses are commonly equipped with panels that range from 60 to 100 amps. Newer homes typically have 200-amp panels that can meet modern electrical demands, which include electronic devices, large-screen TVs, computers, and larger home appliances.

Appliance Upgrade or Home Addition

Homeowners who are considering an addition to their home or installing a major new appliance or HVAC need to factor in more amps. If their current electrical panel can’t handle the greater load, an upgrade will be required.

Dimming and Flickering Lights

The frequent dimming and flickering of lights when appliances are being used may indicate serious issues that require a new electrical panel.

Part 2 will discuss Electrical Odors, Fuse Box, Overusing Power Strips, Tripping Breakers, and Warm Electrical Panels.

Electrical Peace of Mind

Providing professional electricians since 1988 in Maryland, Cook Electric is the company you can rely on for all your electrical service needs. For knowledgeable, fair, honest, reliable, and conscientious service, call Cook Electric today at (410) 266-9040. We will be very glad to help you. sdunhi