The electrical panel is the first point of entry for electricity into the home. Most panels have a main breaker that is designed to trip if the home uses too much power at any one time. Most panels today are 100 amp because they must feed a lot of different sources of equipment. In 1960 a 70 amp main breaker in the panel would have been adequate as we didn’t have as many appliances to power back then. The problem is today’s power needs are over taxing the older panels and in some rare cases are causing fires. Some panels in particular were known to overheat such as the Federal Pacific panel. I recommend that you ask your electrician if the service entrance wire can be changed and a 100 amp breaker installed. Many of the older panels were rated at 100 amps but the wire coming in was only rated at 70 amps. In this case only the wire from the meter to the panel and the main breaker need to be changed.
I just bought a house and the insurance company wants me to upgrade the panel to 100 amps. Can you explain this to me?
Feb 15, 2014