Older homes frequently have electrical panels with fuses instead of circuit breakers. Fuses in an electrical box are known to be a fire hazard and for that reason, many insurance companies will not insure a home with an outdated electrical panel.
Common Problems with Electrical Panels
Aluminum Wiring in Your Home
Aluminum wiring first appears to be an acceptable and less expensive alternative conductor to copper wiring, however as time goes by, aluminum wiring becomes a major problem if it is used in your home's electrical system.
Aluminum wiring suffers from cold creep. Aluminum reacts far more dramatically to temperature changes than copper wiring. When aluminum wiring expands and contracts due to the weather, the wires loosen at their connections, negatively impacting conductivity. Without a solid connection in place, aluminum wiring has a greater potential to cause fires and electrical failures.
Challenger Electrical Panels
During the early 1970's, GTE-Sylvania developed and started selling an electrical panel breaker of their own design. Over the course of the following two decades, the electrical panels, named "Challenger Panels", had been installed into hundreds of thousands of homes all across the United States.
Challenger electrical panels presented serious safety hazards that closely related the dangerous flaws of Zinsco panels, once a major name in residential electrical panels. During the brief lifespan of the Challenger, the company that manufactured them was sold four times, and the Eaton Corporation became the final owner before completely abandoning the product.
If your current house has a Challenger electrical panel, or if you are considering buying a house with a Challenger panel, your top priority should be replacing this component. Caribbean Electrical has extensive experience replacing these inferior panels and will upgrade your home's electrical system with a modern, safe, and dependable unit.
Cloth Insulated Wiring
Cloth insulated wiring was frequently installed in houses built prior to 1950. During that era, cloth was a good insulation material for wiring, however over time, the shortcomings of that method became apparent.
If your home has the original cloth insulated wiring that was installed when your home was built, it is highly recommended to have it replaced. The cloth insulation was not designed to stand the test of time; the insulation becomes brittle and cracks, exposing the bare electrical wire which poses the threat of electrical shock. Furthermore, if the exposed electrical wire comes in contact with other items in your walls or attic, there is a risk of causing a fire.