Electrical Question

Dan Kosko
by Dan Kosko
I own a house that was built around the 1960 time frame. Just recently our power has been going out for no reason at all. We are not overloading the fuses and not sure what the issue is. Last night for example, this is what we had on: tv, fan, dryer, washer, dishwasher and two living room lights. Would it be worth it to upgrade the power? Do you think that would solve my issues? Thanks
  4 answers
  • Shari Shari on Jun 21, 2013
    If you haven't already, you might first check with your power provider. We had a similar problem and our power company came out and moved our "place" on the power line so we were getting more, stronger, better (or something) power. Before, we were experiencing power outages several times a week but now we rarely ever have a problem. Beyond that, you'll have to rely on other HT members with more technical experience with electricity--something I definitely don't have. :)

  • Sousa Electric Company Sousa Electric Company on Jun 22, 2013
    Checking with your power provider is always a good idea. If that doesn't solve the problem then I suggest that you have an electrician take a look at the connections at your panel and meter socket. A loose connection could be the issue here and it's something you want to take care of quickly. You mention fuses, not breakers so I think you would benefit from upgrading to circuit breakers any way. It certainly would help with convenience and resale value.

  • Always check with the power company, its usually a free service and they often can clear up questions quickly.A home built in the sixties often has three things that can cause this type of problem. Fuses or simply a wore out breaker panel. Receptacles wired with the wire not secured under the screws but put into the back of the receptacle. Aluminum wire instead of copper. All of these can create a poor connection. Definitely have an electrician look at it. If its electrical and it doesn't work its not inconvenient, its dangerous!

  • Dan you live in an area where that age home may have had aluminum wiring installed. As a result although you may not be overloading and not tripping breakers, the connections under the breaker or perhaps within the wall could be the cause. Also a loose main feed wire, or even the breaker box may be at fault. As a prior home inspector I saw aluminum wiring many times in the south river area. I suspect this may have something to do with what your experiencing. I suggest that you get a professional in right away to be sure it is not a short somewhere within the wall cavity. The size of the power really has no bearing on the power going out as well. It is of course always suggested that you upgrade the service that is in an older home as more times then not it is undersized for the amount of electrical equipment used these days as compared to the 60,s In addition having a larger service to the house prevents voltage drops when properly sized for the home. If you see your lights dimming every time the AC starts even for just short period of time, It is time then to consider going larger. Dan, do a search for Mid Atlantic Electrical contractors in Glassboro. They can help you out with this. They are a frequent poster here on Hometalk and I am sure they can assist you.