Signs That Your Electric Panel Is Past Its Prime

When you hear the term electrical panel, you might not be sure what it is referring to. Some people will call it a breaker box, others say electrical panel, and sadly some still use the term fuse box. But all of these are pretty much the same item, with slightly different titles. The electrical panel is the metal enclosure or box that houses the breakers for your home’s electrical system. In essence, it is the hub of the electrical service where the main electrical supply is broken down into smaller circuits.

Each one of the circuits delivers power to a different part of your home. Some are dedicated to large features like the air conditioner, furnace, home theater, or swimming pool pumps. Other circuits service a few appliances or outlets in a room or a couple of rooms. And each circuit is controlled and protected by a circuit breaker that will interrupt the flow of power if it detects an issue with the incoming electricity or the circuit. Knowing this, it is easy to understand how the electrical panel in your home is essential for everything that operates via the electrical system. And why you need to know when this integral piece of equipment needs to be replaced. Some of the deciding factors for an electrical panel replacement include:

The Age Of The Panel

Like everything, an electrical panel will wear out. But unlike many other items in your home, when the electrical panel fails, you can be in from some trouble, from a power surge or power failure to an increased potential for an electrical fire. In most cases, with a professionally installed electrical panel, you can expect about 25 years of service before it is time to plan on a replacement.

Physical Issues

When you notice any physical damage to the electrical panel or the enclosure, it is time to call (813) 359-1944 for immediate help. The licensed electricians at Mr. Electric are here 24/7 to handle electrical emergencies or to schedule an appointment to address issues like:

  • Rust on the panel or enclosure
  • If the enclosure is warm to the touch
  • Broken or damaged breaker switches
  • Breakers that will not reset or are very difficult to reset
  • You notice crackling, popping, or other odd sounds coming from the box
  • You smell something smoky or burning when near the electrical panel

A Home Renovation Or Upgrade

You will also want to consider replacing or upgrading your electrical panel when you take on a home renovation or addition. Adding square footage or upgraded features like chef-quality kitchen appliances is sure to require added electrical capacity. It is also the perfect time to add more outlets to rooms with limited access to charging for personal devices.

Call (813) 359-1944 or click here to schedule an appointment for an electrical panel inspection if you are unsure about the age or function of your home’s electrical panel. The licensed professionals at Mr. Electric will provide all the information you need to keep your home and loved ones safe.

Simple Electrical Upgrades To Make Your Office More Productive

Having a well-organized and outfitted office is essential, whether in your home or an office building. Fortunately, there are a few affordable and straightforward electrical upgrades that you can make to increase your productivity and, hopefully, profit margin.

Super Affordable And Simple

Cord management sounds like a fancy name for wasting time to make everything look pretty. However, this is a serious task that can save you time and frustration. No one wants to battle with a web of tangled wires when moving a laptop or relocating a monitor. You might even put off adding some new technology because you don't want to wrestle with the ball of cords. However, cable management will eliminate those issues and the potential for some severe overheating. So find the system that you like to keep cords and cables organized and free from the tangles that can result in short-circuits, overheating, and a nasty coffee spill when you go to move your tech.

Eliminate Eye Strain And Headaches

Adding a few affordable light fixtures can provide a significant reduction in eyestrain and headaches. No one is productive when their head is pounding and their eyes are throbbing. So add a few LED lights to provide adequate illumination without adding heat or sucking up too much electricity. And even better, these light bulbs will last about ten times longer than the old incandescent bulbs that were prone to breaking and overheating.

Add Outlets

If your office is a myriad of power strips and extension cords, you could be creating a severe safety hazard. Any time you plug more than two items into an outlet, you are likely overloading it. The result is going to be too much heat and electricity for the wiring and outlet to handle. Soon you could be noticing a faint smoke odor as the wiring inside the wall begins to smolder and then catch fire. Also, it is essential to note that plugging in two power strips to an outlet does not count as two items unless only one device is plugged into each power strip. Contact a licensed electrician to install more outlets to eliminate the safety issue and potential damage to your expensive electronics.

Create A Collaborative Space

Presentation technology is much more affordable and easy to operate than it was just a few years ago. The benefit of having a place for everyone to gather and collaborate using visual devices and tools is priceless, even though the gear is very affordable. Invest some time in exploring the presentation tech for slides, screen shares, and even adding virtual meetings to let everyone get involved in projects to create the highest quality product for your team and customers.

When you need to update or upgrade your office's electrical service or features, call (813) 359-1944 to reach the experts at Mr. Electric. We offer free price quotes and back all of our work with a parts and labor warranty. Let our licensed electricians help you get the most out of your tea and workspace.

Will Using Ceiling Fans Lower Your Electric Bill In The Summer?

You are sure to have heard from friends with ceiling fans that these little wonders have helped them lower their electric bill in the summertime. But you could be wondering if it is possible, and if so, how does it work. After all, you are paying for the electricity to run a ceiling fan and your air conditioner. So shouldn’t that cost more?

How To Reduce Your Electric Bill This Winter

Many homeowners in Tampa will proudly tell you that their home is very energy efficient. However, in most cases, that statement is based on anything but facts. Energy studies across the country have found that the average home is only operating at about 50%of its potential energy efficiency. And as soon as homeowners learn that scary fact, they are eager to learn how they can increase their home's energy efficiency and begin saving on their utility bills.

All You Need To Know About Charging Your EV At Home

As electric vehicles become more popular and mainstream, many homeowners in Tampa wonder about home charging stations. Sure there are many options around town to charge an electric or hybrid vehicle. But it can be pretty challenging to plan the time and location to charge your car for a few hours. So many homeowners are convinced that a home charger will take the difficulty out of keeping their EV ready at a moment's notice.

Knowing Your Options

There are three levels of EV chargers available. The Level 1 charging station is the one that is typically included with an EV purchase and can be plugged into a standard 110-volt outlet. But it is essential to know that EV manufacturers recommend that you have your car plugged into a 110-volt outlet on a dedicated circuit. This is the best way to prevent any surges or spikes that could damage the costly components in your new car's charging system.

The Level 2 charging station is the other common option found in many homes. This charger is more robust and requires a dedicated 240-volt outlet. These are the larger round outlets often used for an electric dryer. EV manufacturers recommend the brand and model of Level 2 charging station that is ideal for your EV, but they are not included in the purchase of the vehicle. Finally, there are Level 3 charging stations that are sometimes found in a private setting. However, these are most often installed in commercial locations, parking garages, or municipal charging lots.

What Will Work For Your Needs?

All of these charging stations have their pros and cons. The Level 1 units are the most affordable and easy to install. However, they are also the slowest to charge your vehicle. On average, a Level 1 charger will add between 2 and 5 miles to your car's range in an hour of charge time. By comparison, a Level 2 charger will add between 10 and 60 miles to the same vehicle's range in an hour of charging time.

Some of the factors to consider when selecting a charge are the vehicle you have purchased or are going to purchase and the driving you will be doing. If your EV will be driven only a few times a week and for a short distance, a Level 1 charger should be perfect for your needs. It is the most reasonable unit to purchase and have installed as well.

However, if you drive daily and cover a greater distance, a Level 2 charger is better. The faster charge will ensure that your vehicle is always charged and ready for the next day's driving. While this is a more expensive charger, it will offer you more flexibility and distance for daily driving needs.

The Cost Savings Of Electricity Compared To Gasoline

If you are still in the planning stages of your EV purchase, you might wonder if these vehicles will save you any money. To better answer this often asked question, General Motors provided a few calculations. Using the average cost of electricity in the United States and the average amount of driving, they determined that an EV owner will spend from $300 to $400 per year to charge their new car. In contrast. AAA estimates that the average driver spends about $3,000 on gasoline each year. So you can expect a 90% reduction in the cost to power your new EV.

For a free, no-obligation price quote for an EV charging station installation, call (813) 359-1944. The licensed electricians at Mr. Electric will help you determine which unit will best meet your needs for affordable at-home electric vehicle charging.

How To Really Childproof Your Home’s Electrical Outlets

Most parents in will agree that when children become mobile, their anxiety level skyrockets. There are hazards everywhere, from steps and open windows to all of the electrical outlets around the house. And what makes the outlets possibly the worst fear of all is that they are right at eye level for all curious toddlers who are just beginning to explore the world. Parents need to take action early to prevent any heartbreaking catastrophes.

How To Lower Your Electric Bills

Keeping your home functioning on a budget can be challenging, especially as we head into the fall and then the holiday season. It seems like there are always new expenses popping up and increases in your routine bills. However, when you find creative ways to keep your utility bills under budget, you can apply that extra cash to other bills to help combat your stress. Reducing your electric bill can be easier than you think when you follow just a few simple tips.

All You Need To Know About Installing A New Hot Tub

Do you think that a new hot tub would be a great addition to your home? You are not alone. Many homeowners are opting for this form of relaxation and recreation over the high cost of a swimming pool. It can be used with the heater in the winter months to warm up and rejuvenate after a long day at work or turn the heater off and enjoy a refreshingly cool dip in the summertime. But before you make the investment, there are a few electrical items that you will want to consider to ensure that you can safely operate your new spa.

4 Reasons For High Electric Bills

Many residents are looking at their electric bills and wondering why they keep increasing each month. Those same people are often quick to blame rate increases. But those are rarer than you would think. The most common reason for increased electric bills is household energy waste. But once you know the most prominent offenders in your home, you can eliminate them and start getting your electric bill back down to a more manageable level.

Space Heater Safety

If you live in an older drafty home or have rooms in your home that need supplemental heat, electric space heaters are a great way to increase your comfort. But it is essential to understand that while these devices offer a much-needed service, they can also be dangerous if not used properly. House fires, electrical shocks, and other injuries occur each year when homeowners become less focused on this heater's safe use. But you can avoid accidents and injuries and simply enjoy the added warmth in your home by following just a few safety tips.

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