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An Exterior Electrical Box: Benefits & How to Find It

Many people install electrical boxes outside. The main reason is to enable the fire department to quickly switch off the power supply from the outside in case of an emergency. Read on to learn more.

The outdoor electrical box ensures a reliable connection between electrical equipment and power lines. If you want to ensure the safety and smooth functioning of all of your electrical appliances, you need to get a good electrical box. Your holiday lighting, heating, and cooling systems and your aquatic systems placed outdoors require a safe and effective electrical solution. For these purposes, an exterior electrical box is your best bet. Our electrical contractors are available to upgrade your old electrical system to a safer option. 

If you already have an outside electrical panel box but can’t seem to find it on your property, below is a brief guide on how to do it.

Where To Locate Your Outside Breaker Box

Usually, all houses have one main electrical panel that controls the amount of electricity entering the house. All you have to do is find your outside breaker box. You can also label your exterior electrical box; it will save a lot of time.

Your exterior electrical box likely looks like a grey metal box installed on the wall. The main electric panel can be found in the basement, garage, and laundry room or outside your home. If power lines are placed above the ground in your area, the best way to locate an exterior electrical box is to look for the main service head on the roof of your home. Your power lines connect the grid to your home at this point. 

Your service panel will be placed under the service head on the exterior of your home. If you are living in an old house, you won't find it outside. Instead, look inside your home for a metal panel door that opens or a metal box that is large and painted to blend with your home's color scheme. 

If nothing else, call your local electrical company to help you locate it. At Prolectric, our experienced electricians can locate and test your outside electrical box in case you need to upgrade it according to the regulations and safety standards.

Why Do I Even Need an Outside Electrical Box?

Suppose you have recently moved to a new house and you find the exterior electrical box. In that case, you may become curious why your breaker is installed outside your house. Over the years, new regulations have been implemented in various parts of the country to install breaker boxes outside the home. 

Outdoor electrical boxes are very safe. When the electrical boxes are installed outside, in case of a fire incident or short-circuit, the fire department can quickly shut off the main electrical supply of your home. If your home is relatively new (less than 15 years have passed since the construction of your home), then you will likely have an exterior electrical box. 

However, if you live in an old house, there is a high likelihood that your breaker is located inside your house. The average age of most homes is 44 years. This means most of the houses require an electrical upgrade, including installing an outside breaker box for the safety and protection of residents while meeting the new regulations. 

The most common problems associated with electrical boxes include:

Overcrowding

  • Easy to identify because the panel looks messy, with an overabundance of wires
  • Some breakers may appear to be double-tapped, which can create fire hazards and tripped breakers

Insufficient capacity

  • If your wall is warm to the touch, your breaker box may have an insufficient capacity and could create an additional fire hazard
  • You find yourself tripping breakers often, meaning you are overloading the circuit

Corrosion

  • Water damage is the number one cause of rust and corrosion on wires and on the metal surrounding the electrical box

These problems create a potential for fire or electrocution. Installing an outside breaker box allows for emergency personnel to access and shut off the electricity in the event of an emergency.

You should check with your National Electrical Code for your state's regulations, as regulations may differ from state to state. You can also ask the local building inspector and a professional electrician to reposition your breaker box.

Get in Touch with Our Team If 

Your safety is our top priority. When you’re having an emergency, you don't want the rescue team to keep looking for the breaker. An exterior electrical box can save time for the rescue team and maybe even save your life – every second counts in the midst of a deadly fire. Hire a professional service and check your electrical systems to ensure safety, adequate energy consumption, and prevention. 

Electric problems can escalate quickly, leaving you without power or even in more fatal situations. If you experience any problems with your outside breaker box, immediately call Prolectric. Don't wait! Upgrade your electrical system now.

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