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Question DetailsAsked on 1/27/2016

Approx how much is to replace an electrical panel in Holiday, FL?

We are buying a house and a lot of insurance carriers won't insure us because of the brand of electric panel. We want to have it replaced the first week we move in.

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3 Answers


IF you are not past your inspection/contingency deadline, I would put a requirement for a new up-to-code panel (and service if applicable) into the contract as an item to be replaced by the owner prior to closing - at HIS cost.

Otherwise - sounds like you have an older Zinsco, Sylvania, Kearny (ps ?), Federal Pacific Electric, or Challenger or similar system which has demonstrated a tendency for the breakers to trip out at too high an amperage, or not at all. Some also had bus bars that were undersized for the load they were rated for, or did not holdthe breakers firmly so arced and caused fires.

If you sign in as a registered AL user, you can find several similar questions with responses right below this answer - more links to similar questions below them. However, because of code compliance issues, service rating variability, etc you would want and need one or more actual FIRM bids, marked as valid till well after the date you need it done, so you KNOW what the cost will actually be - not guess, because you are likely talking $1,000-3,000 - rarely but possibly more.

Get clarification from the insurer you are talking to - on whether they require a whole new breaker panel with new breakers, new service run and meter base/master breaker/disconnect (as applicable) also, or if just replacement modern breakers will do. Some of the problems with certain brands involved only the breakers, and there are replacement (including different brand) breakers that will fit some boxes and do not have the problem - that is certainly the easiest and cheapest fix if it works in your case, maybe coming in as low as around $500 or so for a small panel and almost certainly less than $1000 for any normal sized house.

Answered 4 years ago by LCD


Didn't realize I wasn't signed in.

The seller won't replace - we want it replaced because it has a history of overheating and not tripping and I do not want to sleep in a house I'm afraid could go up in flames. It's more of a peace of mind thing honestly.

Answered 4 years ago by NikJSD


Oh, I think you were signed in - just mentioned that because if you are logged in as a user, the links below the answers to a question are to related questions (or at least ones that the AL search engines thinks are related, which are commonly two very different things), whereas if logged in as a Guest the list below the answers is of the most recent 5 or so Questions of any subject.

You can also see all the prior questions on breaker panel / service replacement by scanning through the Home > Electrical link in Browse Projects, at lower left - there have been about 10 or more in the past year or so, and of course once you start clicking on them each has related links below it to more similar questions - IF you are logged in at the time.

Good Luck, and I agree - if one of the brands insurer's are refusing to cover, then not only a dubious safety issue for that reason (history of failures) but also old enough to probably be thinking about a pretty thorough upgrade anyway.

At the same time, think about total household capacity (service rating - say 100, 150, 200 amps or whatever) especially if you have a shop hobby that uses a lot of power for air compressor, welder, large woodworking power tools, etc because that can usually be done at pretty minimal additional cost if done at the same time. Also consider if you may want to add circuits in the future - a larger panel with more slots only adds $50-150 usually, and unless going well beyond the rating of the service generally can be done with service upgrade - though of course you can't use signficant power on all the new circuits at the same time. But having additional slots available for future circuits for outdoor lighting, hot tub, garage power tool outlets, electric car charger or winter block heater plug-in, etc can be useful and also potentially a reselling point.

Answered 4 years ago by LCD

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