How to Remove a Circuit Breaker From a Panel Box
The majority of residential homes have two locations with circuit breakers. The main circuit breaker controls your entire electrical system. When tripped, everything in your home goes off. It disrupts all the power before it reaches the branch breakers in your panel box. The branch circuit breaker is beyond the main breaker and to your electronic devices.
We will be discussing how to remove breakers from the panel box. It may be malfunctioning or faulty hence requiring a replacement. With the right tools and following the proper precautions, one can remove a branch circuit breaker and replace it in a few steps. Safety precaution is crucial since one touch of live wire can easily cause a fatal accident.
What are the Circuit Breaker and Panel Box?
A circuit breaker is a device that breaks up the current connection in case of a fault or abnormal current. It closes or opens your electrical circuit hence protecting the electrical system from damage.
A circuit breaker consists of secured and movable contacts. They are in contact with each other and transfer the current under a normal state when the circuit is closed. When closed, the electrodes (current-carrying contacts) in the circuit breaker engage each other under a spring constraint.
A panel box is the metal box that hosts all your fuses and electrical switches for branch circuits. It is the central distribution point for all your home electrical circuits.
Signs That Your Circuit Breaker Requires Replacement
Circuit breakers are one of the best lines of defense that protect all your home electrical appliances. But, breakers may become faulty at times due to old age. Other signs that your breaker needs instant replacement include:
Circuit breakers can work for many years. However, they may start failing in case of physical damage. Suppose you notice any marks or damage on the breaker. In that case, the best option is to have a professional electrician check and replace it.
In their old age, the breakers require a replacement. If you have basic knowledge about electricity, you can find the exact match of the breaker and follow the steps below.
When you plug in and turn on one of your appliances and the breaker trips, it is serving its purpose. However, when the breaker starts frequently tripping with no cause, it is high time to find an electrician to assess your situation. Your breaker could be bad, or your electrical system requires an additional circuit.
A Burning Smell From the Electrical Panel
It is one of the signs that require immediate attention from an electrician. It is a direct hint of a malfunction somewhere within the current or in the electrical panel. The best you can do in such a situation is switch off the main power to the house and wait for the professionals.
Damaged or Old Wiring
If the wiring around your breakers seems old or damaged, you can consider replacing them to avoid future consequences. The wiring may also be loose due to age and require tightening.
How to Remove Breakers From a Panel Box
You can follow the steps below on how to remove a breaker from the panel box if it needs a replacement.
The first step in any activity regarding electricity is to turn off the main circuit breaker. You should then switch off all the branch circuit breakers in the panel box. Assuming that the breakers are off is a bad idea. You should also use a tester to check for voltage continuity to ensure that the breaker is dead.
Take off the panel box cover to gain access to the branch circuit breakers. Never attempt to remove the cover from the main circuit breaker. It is one of the most threatening parts of any electrical system. It should only be accessed by a professional electrician from a certified corporation like Echo Air Conditioning.
After taking off the cover, you can disconnect the wire from the breaker and move it out of the way. Cautiously pry the circuit breaker from its regular position. If you intend to replace it, note how it fits and locks into place. When putting in a new breaker, it is essential to remember that sideways and upside-down positions do not work.
When the circuit is open, check your other branch circuits to ensure they are in position and secure any loose parts.
Why Hire a Pro to Remove Your Circuit Breaker?
When having an electrical breakdown in your home, we recommend consulting a professional. If you see signs that one of your breakers needs replacement, here is why you should have an electrician assess its condition:
- A professional sorts out an electrical problem for the long term.
- A breaker operates under a current that can easily cause bodily harm.
- Sometimes the problem may not be the breaker hence the need for a professional.
A circuit breaker is one of the essential parts of an electrical system. It helps prevent accidents such as fire and damage to electrical appliances and bulbs. Circuit breakers rarely malfunction or break down since they are only designed to reset.
However, with the possibility of this happening, we advise homeowners to seek expert services to avoid the risk that comes with such activities. It’s best to use the right tools and ensure that the breaker to be fitted is similar to the faulty one. At Echo Air Conditioning in South Florida, we have electrical professionals who can diagnose and address problems to put you out of harm’s way.