Your home’s electrical system is a vital component that powers your daily life, from providing lighting and heating to running appliances and electronics. However, not all electrical panels are created equal, and some pose significant risks to homeowners and their properties. One such panel is the Federal Pacific Electric (FPE) panel, which has gained notoriety for its potential safety hazards. In this blog post, we’ll delve into the dangers associated with Federal Pacific electrical panels and why homeowners should consider replacing them.

The Federal Pacific Electric Panel Controversy: Federal Pacific Electric was a prominent manufacturer of electrical panels and circuit breakers in the mid-20th century. However, in the 1980s and 1990s, concerns began to emerge regarding the safety and reliability of FPE panels, particularly their circuit breakers’ failure to trip in the event of overload or short circuit.

Safety Hazards Associated with FPE Panels: The primary safety hazards associated with Federal Pacific electrical panels include:

  1. Failure to Trip: Independent testing and investigations have revealed that many FPE circuit breakers fail to trip when overloaded or short-circuited, leaving electrical circuits unprotected and increasing the risk of electrical fires.
  2. Potential for Arc Faults: Due to their design flaws and inadequate construction, FPE panels are more prone to developing arc faults, which can lead to electrical fires and catastrophic property damage.
  3. Inadequate Performance Under Stress: FPE panels have been found to perform inadequately under stress conditions, such as prolonged exposure to high temperatures or repeated electrical surges, further compromising their reliability and safety.

Why Replace Your FPE Panel: Given the significant safety risks associated with Federal Pacific electrical panels, homeowners are strongly advised to consider replacing them with modern, code-compliant panels. Here are several compelling reasons to replace your FPE panel:

  1. Enhanced Safety: Upgrading to a new, reliable electrical panel reduces the risk of electrical fires, shocks, and other safety hazards associated with FPE panels. Newer panels incorporate advanced safety features and undergo rigorous testing to ensure optimal performance and protection.
  2. Code Compliance: Many FPE panels are outdated and no longer meet current electrical codes and standards. By replacing your FPE panel with a modern, code-compliant panel, you ensure that your home’s electrical system is up to date and in compliance with regulatory requirements.
  3. Peace of Mind: Replacing your FPE panel provides peace of mind knowing that your home and family are protected from the potential dangers posed by outdated and unreliable electrical equipment. Investing in a safer electrical system is an investment in your family’s safety and well-being.

Choosing a Qualified Electrical Contractor: When replacing your FPE panel, it’s essential to work with a qualified and experienced electrical contractor who specializes in panel upgrades and replacements. Here are some key factors to consider when selecting a contractor:

  • Licensed and Insured: Choose a licensed and insured electrical contractor with the necessary credentials and certifications to perform panel replacements safely and effectively.
  • Experience and Expertise: Look for a contractor with extensive experience and expertise in handling panel upgrades and replacements, particularly with FPE panels.
  • References and Reviews: Seek out references from past clients and read online reviews to gauge the contractor’s reputation and track record of customer satisfaction.
  • Transparent Communication: Select a contractor who communicates openly and transparently, providing detailed explanations of the replacement process, timeline, and cost estimates.

Federal Pacific electrical panels pose significant safety risks to homeowners and their properties due to their failure to trip, potential for arc faults, and inadequate performance under stress. To ensure the safety and reliability of your home’s electrical system, it’s essential to replace your FPE panel with a modern, code-compliant panel installed by a qualified electrical contractor. Don’t compromise on safety – invest in protecting your home and family by replacing your outdated FPE panel today.  We’ve seen the issues first hand.  Please call Big Bear Electrical Contracting today to ensure your safety.  Quotes are free and we are here to help.