As discussed in Part 1, some older apartment buildings need to be completely overhauled electrically to be up to date while meeting modern power demands. Part 2 will discuss Symptoms of System Failure and Performing an Electrical Upgrade.
Symptoms of System Failure
Owners and property managers must be able to spot the symptoms of an overburdened electrical system because they can result in a deadly fire. These signs are quite clear before the electrical system completely fails. If circuit breakers constantly trip or fuses blow when electrical outlets are overused, it indicates an electrical system that requires upgrading. Lights dimming or flickering are other signs. Finally, outlets that feel warm to the touch or spark when a device is plugged in are also symptoms of electrical issues.
The above symptoms are more likely to affect older buildings because many have not upgraded their electrical systems over the years. Electrical lines that were adequate for an apartment decades ago have become so outdated that using a few appliances can trip a circuit breaker or blow a fuse. Thus, older buildings should probably have their electrical panels upgraded to ensure safety and meet modern power demands.
Performing an Electrical Upgrade
The initial step for an electrical upgrade is hiring a licensed electrician to assess the apartment building’s electrical capacity. An electrician or electrical engineer should be hired to do the assessment. The assessment will typically involve a professional counting the building’s electrical switches and calculating its electrical load.
Several factors, including the apartment building’s square footage and the number of units and residents, will also be considered for the calculation of electrical capacity. Along with the utility possibly upgrading its lines and equipment servicing the building, a complete electrical upgrade often requires the addition of new meter banks and switches.
Electrical Services You Can Trust
Founded in 1991, Meyer Electrical Services provides home and commercial electrical services in Maryland, Virginia, and D.C., where we are licensed and insured. Based in Bethesda, our team proudly serves all of Montgomery County. Receive a free consultation for custom electrical work today by calling (301) 941-1400