What Should I Do If My Electrical Panel Is Sparking?

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Have you ever had a light switch stop working? The problem might not be with the switch but with your electrical panel. If that’s the case, you may hear it sparking. Sizzling, crackling, buzzing, and popping sounds can mean sparks are flying inside the electrical panel and major damage is occurring. If an electrical panel is sparking, it’s an immediate and dangerous fire hazard, and your home and its occupants are at risk. 

The first thing you should do, as we explain in this video, is to turn off the main breaker. Some people try to remove the sparking breaker. But this is very dangerous because the sparking can turn into something more significant at any moment (the panel can catch fire or you could be burned, shocked, or electrocuted). If you’re hearing audible signs of an electrical panel sparking, turn off the power and call a licensed electrician. They can safely troubleshoot the problem and determine how to resolve it.

What Causes a Panel to Spark?

Sparking can be caused by a faulty wire or a poor connection between a breaker’s metal contact and the panel’s metal bus bar. When this happens, the plastic on the affected breaker starts to melt. It causes the next breaker to heat up, which then starts to melt, and so on, until the issue travels up the panel. Once the entire electrical panel is affected, it can ignite into a fireball and cause catastrophic damage to your home.

Preventing an Electrical Panel from Sparking

If an electrical panel is sparking, it must be repaired or replaced by an electrician. The only way to tell why it’s sparking is to open the panel and inspect the wiring. But this is too dangerous if you don’t have the right experience and proper tools. 

However, you can prevent your electrical panel from sparking with regular maintenance. During a preventative maintenance inspection, an electrician can check for signs of damage, such as faulty wiring, charred breakers, loose screws, corrosion, and improperly sized breakers. If the technician corrects any issues that may lead to sparking, further damage and serious electrical hazards can be avoided.

Call Express Electrical Services to Deal with a Sparking Electrical Panel

A sparking panel and its associated sounds are among the most obvious signs you need to hire a professional electrician. Other reasons to call include frequently tripping breakers, flickering or dimming lights, or a panel that feels warm, looks scorched, or has a burning odor. At Express Electrical Services, our trained technicians can repair, replace, or upgrade your electrical panel to improve safety, capacity, and energy efficiency. 

If your electrical panel is sparking, don’t take chances; call (888) 741-6404 or schedule service online and we’ll quickly get a crew to your home.

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