Why should I replace my service entrance?
This is a question that many people in Montreal ask, particularly when they move into older homes. Often, the question becomes “Which is better: repairing my service entrance / electrical control panel, or replacing it?” This box is often described as the heart or even the brain of a home’s electric system.
However, it is still a simple system – one that can fail for a variety of reasons, including faulty installation, moisture, dryness, excess sunlight, or simple obsolescence. A malfunctioning service entrance can cause electrical problems for the whole house – or can hold up the process of purchasing or selling an older house if the service entrance is not up to code. If you’re not an electrician, this may seem overwhelming.
Luckily, some signs can help you decide whether it is best to contact a Montreal-based electrical contractor to replace the whole system. One of these is damaged service cables; a professional can best help assess the state of your service cables.
Another sign you should replace the service entrance is known exposure of the service entrance to moisture (for example, after a flood). Signs of water exposure include rust stains on the box or white corrosion on wiring and other metal. Unfortunately, a professional contractor must replace your service box if you notice these signs.
Improper wiring can also cause major issues in the electrical control panel; you might observe this with oversized breakers, two circuits doubled-up on a single-pole breaker, two single, individual circuits being supplied by double-pole breakers, and wires crisscrossing over the center of the pole.
Although these problems can be quite dangerous, the good news is that with the help of a professional electrical contractor, they can be fixed quite easily, quickly, and affordably!
In sum, you should replace your service entrance / electrical control panel if the service cables are damaged, if there is water damage, or if there is faulty wiring. Older homes, such as those with knob-and-tube wiring or poorly maintained wiring in general, may benefit from the help of an electrical contractor to assess whether the service entrance / electrical control panel should be repaired or replaced.
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