Where is my Electrical Panel?
The electrical panel is on of the most crucial parts of the modern home electrical system. This panel contains all of the breakers for your home and is the place where power is regulated coming into your home. As power comes in from the city, the electrical panel then disperses it throughout the rest of your home. For many new or first time homeowners, the electrical panel can be a bit of a mystery and even finding it for the first time could present a challenge. However, by learning where your electrical panel is and even what an electrical panel is comprised of, you will be taking the first steps to better yourself as a homeowner.
Where is it?
The location of your electrical panel varies from home to home, but there are several common and standard locations for it. If you live in a house, then typically your electrical panel will be located outside of the house or in the garage. However, the location of your electrical panel truly does depend, property to property, on many different factors. So if it is not in either of those locations, this does not mean there is a problem. If you live in an apartment the location of your electrical panel also could vary, but is most likely in side the apartment, usually in the kitchen or bathroom areas. When I have needed to find electrical panels in the past, starting outside, near the place that the city powerline connects to the house has always been a good place to begin the search.
What does it look like?
Before you begin your search it is very important that you know what the Electrical panel looks like. The panel itself is a rectangular looking metal box, usually mounted into the walls of your home. This rectangle should have a cover on it so that it looks like a flat piece of wall or a metal box. If your electrical panel does not have a cover be sure to contact an electrician to have them inspect and install a cover, especially because an uncovered panel can prove to be extremely dangerous. After you have successfully located and opened the electrical panel you will notice the panel’s layout. The standard layout is columns of black colored plastic tabs or switches. These are called circuit breakers, which will be in the center of the panel itself and there can be as many as 50+ or as few as 10. These circuit breakers are the “regulators” of power in your home and trip if there is an electrical problem in any part of your home. A tripped circuit breaker will look different than all of the other circuit breakers in that it will be facing a different direction from the others, as well as possibly display the word “off” on it, instead of saying “on.” Next to the breakers there may be writing or a place for writing, this is to help identify which breakers control power in the different parts of your home or apartment. Taking time to label which breakers control the different areas of your home is extremely helpful, especially when you need to troubleshoot your home.
Hopefully, you now know a little bit more about your home and how to locate your electrical panel. Remember if you are experiencing any electrical issues in your home that you feel uncomfortable handling alone, call Accurate Electrical Services. We would love to help you figure out the next steps to solving your problem, and would love to keep you and your home safe.