Bethesda MD Electrician
Written by Walt Meyer

Upgrading the Electrical System of an Older Home – Part 2

As discussed in Part 1, the increasing number of appliances and devices often overload the electrical systems of older houses, condominiums, and apartment buildings. This can lead to several problems that could have been prevented by upgrading their electrical panel and wiring. Part 2 will cover Upgrade Symptoms, Upgrade Benefits, and Common Causes of Electrical Fire. 

Upgrade Symptoms

Below are typical symptoms indicating a home’s electrical system needs an upgrade:

  • Frequent tripping of circuit breakers.
  • Lights dimming when appliances are turned on.
  • Extension cords, power strips, and adapters needed to create additional electric outlets.

Upgrade Benefits

An electrical upgrade of an older home would allow residents to use modern appliances in safety. Costly electronic equipment like computers and entertainment systems would also be protected from electrical problems. In addition, a newly installed heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system, which consumes a great amount of electricity, could also be accommodated. An upgraded electrical system could also help raise a home’s resale value. However, the greatest benefit is ensuring the protection of a home from fire hazards resulting from overloaded circuits.

Common Causes of Electrical Fire

  • The update of an electrical system can help prevent the five most common causes of electrical fires in older homes as set forth below.
  • Faulty electrical outlets, receptacles, and switches used with older appliances with frayed or worn cords near combustible materials found in homes.
  • Overuse and misuse of extension cords because of a lack of outlets. Running them underneath carpets and rugs may cause a fire because of overheating.
  • Improper use of light bulbs, fixtures, and lamps. Never exceed maximum recommended bulb wattage of a lamp or lighting fixture or lamp.
  • Misusing space heaters, especially by placing them near combustible items such as blankets, curtains, and clothing.
  • Worn and outdated wiring that does not have the capacity to handle modern electrical demands of households with numerous devices and appliances, including computers, air conditioners, large wide screen televisions, etc.

Electrical Services You Can Trust

Founded in 1991 and serving Maryland, Virginia, and D.C., where we are licensed and insured, Meyer Electrical Services provides home and commercial electrical services you can trust, including:

  • Standby Generator Installation
  • Panel Upgrades (Heavy-Ups)
  • Electrical Vehicle Charging Stations
  • Structured Cabling
  • Circuit Breaker Replacement

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.