According to the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA), electrical distribution equipment was responsible for more than 24,000 residential fires in 2017. Electrical distribution equipment includes outlets, wiring, electrical panels, circuits, breakers, and so much more.
What is an Electrical Panel?
An electrical panel is also known as a breaker box, and it contains your home’s electrical system’s circuit breakers that regulate the power supply. Circuit breakers are in place to protect your wiring from power surges by shutting off the power supply when “tripped.”
What Are the Risks of a Faulty Electrical Panel?
Since electrical panels are essentially in place to protect you from high surges of electricity and these surges of power could potentially cause a house fire, if they are not working correctly, then that fire could start anyways.
Which Panels Should I Look Out For?
Throughout the 1950s and up until the 1980s Federal Pacific and Zinsco electrical panels were incredibly popular among home builders. It wasn’t until the late 80s that they began to realize just how unsafe these panels were. One of the main problems with the Federal Pacific panels is that even when they recognized a power surge, the circuit breaker would not “trip” and shut down the power. This flaw led to a number of residential fires that would have been completely avoidable.
One of the main flaws in the Zinsco panels was a tendency for the breakers to melt so that even when they detected a power surge, they were unable to “trip” themselves and homeowners were also unable to turn them off themselves manually.
If you know that you have electrical panels in your home that were manufactured by either Federal Pacific or Zinsco you should contact your local electrical company to have these replaced. The experts at A-TEMP Heating, Cooling & Electrical, have years of experience replacing these types of panels and are more than qualified to inspect and detect any damage that may have already been caused. Contact us today for more information on how we can help you.