I smell burnt wires sometimes in the area of the panel. What would cause a wire to get hot and smell?

If you small hot burning wires you likely either have a loose connection or a load on a breaker that is not tripping when it should. Another common problem is over amping a wire by putting a light duty wire on a heavy duty breaker. For instance a 14 gauge wire is rated for 15 amps. If you connected this wire to a 20 amp breaker the wire would need to carry the full 20 amps before it would trip the breaker. This means it would begin to heat up and potentially cause a fire. If your smelling hot wires you may soon be looking at a fire, I recommend calling someone to look at the problem. I have a thermal camera I would use in this situation to try to locate the problem. I would also remove the panel cover to check for problems inside. I do not recommend homeowners remove the panel cover unless qualified to do so.

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