All You Should Know About Upgrading A Fuse-box

A fuse box is a very vital electrical panel in a building. It is a metal box installed in a building, which controls the movement of power in circuits. It measures the appropriate amount of power to be sent to a particular circuit, thereby protecting the home against electrical accidents.

FAQs about Fuse boxes

When should a fuse box be replaced?

The box needs to be replaced if;

  • The box is constantly overheating and tripping. Also, if the box cannot adequately handle normal demands, then it may need replacement.
  • The box is unsafe.
  • It cannot meet the demands of new appliances like air conditioners.

There is likely to be an absence of circuit breakers in the old fuse box, so if you still use the old fuse box, then you might need an upgrade. Circuit breakers are excellent safety devices and are incorporated in newer models of fuse boxes.

Is the process of replacing a fuse box time-consuming?

The time taken to replace a fuse box varies from building to building. Making the simplest change from a standard old school fuse box to a modern, more efficient fuse box takes about 4 hours. 

In houses that are older than 25 years, the fuse-box installation will take a long process and time. To ensure that the mains power complies with the increased power requirement, we might need to make an upgrade to the main power. In this case, the switchboard upgrade will take about 8 hours to be completed.

Another condition that can affect the time taken to replace your fuse box is the location of the box. Before this time, fuse boxes could be fixed anywhere in the building, resulting in a poor meter reading. Presently, there are legal requirements concerning the location of the box. According to current regulations, for efficient meter reading, the box needs to be less than 2 meters from the ground, and within 2 metres from the front of the building. The fuse box replacement time, in this case, will be longer than other cases, as there is more work to do.

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What is the cost of replacing a fuse box with circuit breakers?

When a certified fuse box replacement is done, the emergency electrician in charge must ensure that the electrical wiring of the building is brought up to date with the current electrical safety regulations. To this effect, we cannot give an estimate of the cost until we have done a visual inspection. The cost will vary depending on the general upgrade that needs to be done on your wiring system. However, this should not bother you as we will provide a detailed quote upfront. 

By rough estimations, a basic fuse box upgrade will cost between $900 and $1200. If your upgrade should be combined with a mains upgrade and fuse box relocation, the cost should come up to about $2000 and $3000. 

Should my circuit breakers be replaced?

Over the years, there have been some innovations and technological advancements with circuit breakers, each model safer and more efficient than the previous. 

Here is a brief explanation of the circuit models in order of higher efficiency;

  • Ceramic Fuses: Here, the fuse wire is run around some screws and then plugged into the fuse box. These circuits provide only basic protection like short-circuiting and overload protection but do not protect against electric shock.
  • Plug-in Circuit Breaker: These ones are plugged into the fuse base, which is safer than the wire-around-screw method of the first. However, protection is still much limited.
  • Hardwired circuit breakers: Though safer than the first two, they still only protected against short-circuit and overload.
  • Safety Switches: These are the RCDs. Finally, they provide protection against electric shock, which is a huge step. There is a limitation; when they trip, they take out the entire supply in a building.  
  • Combination Safety Switches/Circuit breakers: These are the most recent switch types. They protect single circuits, thereby restricting problems to each circuit and not the entire building. Also, each circuit has its own earth fault. 
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If you need any form of fuse board upgrade, ensure that you get a licensed professional to handle it for you. You can also contact us on 020 71834006 for help.

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