Do you know where your main electrical panel is located? And if you do, do you know what to do if a circuit breaker trips? If you don’t, it’s time to find that panel and become familiar with how it works.
Main electrical panels are usually located either in the basement or an attached garage, just opposite the meter on the outside of the house.
AmeriSpec inspectors have found that electrical panels are blocked by cabinets or items stacked for storage. Homeowners should clear this space to have safe access to the panel. There should be 30 inches of open space on either side and 36 inches in front of the panel. If someone is working at the panel and it arcs, or sparks, then they will have enough room to step away without tripping on something.
Another common problem we find during electrical inspections is double circuitry, where two items are wired into one breaker. Wires can overheat, or the circuit breaker can trip and shut off.
We often find double circuitry at the main shut-off. This happens when a wire is added to run power to a sub panel.
Either of these problems should be corrected immediately by a licensed electrician.
- On April 1, 2016