Bethesda, MD, Electrician, Meyer Electrical Services
Written by Walt Meyer

Electrical Panel Upgrade Guidelines for Older Homes

Also called a heavy-up, an electrical panel upgrade increases a service panel’s amperage capacity to allow your home’s electrical system to handle higher electrical loads. Typically, this procedure will result in increasing amperage from 100 to 200 amps.

Older Houses

An older house will probably require a heavy-up to meet modern electrical demands. Many Maryland homes were built decades before the invention of computers, HD televisions, cell phones, etc. Even though old homes are gradually being upgraded to handle the 21st-century demands, many are still incapable of handling modern everyday use of electricity.

Electrical Panel Upgrade Example

The installation of a new HVAC (heating, ventilation, air conditioning) unit is an instance when a heavy-up is often required. Your house’s electrical system has to increase its capacity to cope with the significant rise in electrical demand, so potential problems are prevented, and your family’s safety ensured. Keep in mind that the usage of air conditioning during very hot summer days will be increased. In the meantime, your home’s electrical system will also be powering TVs, refrigerators, microwaves, electronic devices, and computers.

Advantages of Electrical Panel Upgrade

When an outdated electrical panel is upgraded, it increases the safety of your home. This is because its electrical system is now able to handle your family’s modern electricity demands. In addition, your supply of electricity is more stable, grounding will be improved, space for additional circuits will be available, and there will be a main breaker shut-off in case of emergency.  

When a Heavy-Up is Required

 A central air-conditioning system or larger new appliance will be installed

  • A remodeling project will be adding or expanding rooms
  • Circuit breakers frequently trip
  • Lights flicker when large appliances are turned on

Last Advice

An electrical panel upgrade is not a DIY project for typical homeowners. For the safety of your family, hire an experienced licensed electrician to carry out this project. A professional will also be able to give you a hand obtaining required permits and inspections.

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.