Due to rapid advances in modern technology, many businesses are operating with insufficient electrical wiring for the both the quantity and power needs of their equipment. To make matters worse, when buildings are updated or renovated, existing electrical wiring often goes untouched, when a new electrical panel should be added.
What is an electrical panel?
The electrical panel provides electricity to your business's equipment. Power from the utility company flows into your business through this panel, branching out into major electrical branches and then smaller branches in order to distribute power. A properly functioning electrical panel is essential to the safety and productivity of your business. What's more, commercial electrical panels are required by Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) to have a "dead front," which protects live parts from being exposed to a person on the operating side of the equipment preventing electric shock.
Where is the electrical panel in my business?
Your electrical panel can be identified as a painted or gray metal box. It is typically located in an area of your business that is both easily accessible and out of the way in order to prevent it from becoming blocked, a safety violation of OSHA and NFPA codes. Be advised, however, if you are having trouble locating your electrical panel inside your business, it may be located outside.
Old Electrical Panels Can Cause Problems for Your Business:
- Flickering lights
- Breakers that constantly trip or fuses that frequently blow
- Melted electrical wires
- The need to turn off one appliance to use another
- Defective circuit breakers that fail to trip, resulting in shocks, overheating, and fire
- Dangers to your customers, employees, and property resulting from fire and electrical shock
Commercial Electrical Needs Are Unique...
Businesses utilize a large variety of electronic equipment, many of which require specialty outlets or dedicated circuits for safe, efficient operation. Installing a new electrical panel ensures this smooth operation, as well as safety code compliance.
The following Indicate a Need for a New Electrical Panel:
- Crackling sounds emitting from the electrical panel
- Corrosion or rust on the breakers or panel
- Overheating electrical service conductors
- The use of multiple extension cords
- The need for additional outlets or two pronged (non-grounded) outlets
- Computers that are not on a dedicated circuit
- Electronic devices that do not operate at full power
- The installation of new equipment such as copiers, printers, computers, servers, projectors, and more which require dedicated or specialty outlets
- Additions or renovations to your business
- The need for a 240-volt circuit
- The addition of a sub panel
- Your business utilizes a fuse block or split bus panel (no main breaker) - technology which is far outdated and unsafe, posing both fire and electrocution safety risks
- Your insurance company requires a new electrical panel upgrade
Professional Installation and Maintenance of Your New Electrical Panel
Installing and maintaining your new electrical panel is complex and should only be performed by a licensed professional to ensure:
- The right size service panel to meet your needs
- Local planning permits and approvals are received
- Wiring is installed to current local and federal codes, which frequently change
- A different power supply or meter is supplied by the power company before installation (when necessary)
- Existing wires are repaired and replaced where necessary, performed properly, and meet current codes
- The use of appropriate materials, including safe and proper grounding with copper
- Knowledge of your new system, including a schematic of your new panel and wiring including all functions and switches
If you reside in an aging building or are concerned your business's electrical needs aren't being safely met, contact Mr. Electric® today. Our technicians can install a new electrical panel in your business, protecting your employees and property from electrical issues and emergencies before they occur.