How Do You Know When a Breaker Goes Bad?

Written on: March 25, 2024

We can help fix issues with your home’s electrical panel.

electric New Haven County, CT For many homeowners, the only time they think about the breakers on their electrical panel is when they need to kill power to part of their home so they can install a new dishwasher or light fixture. But the breakers in your home are more than oversized light switches. They are safety features that prevent power surges that can damage your home.

When it’s time to replace a breaker that’s gone bad, the electrical services team at Seymour Energy Services is here for New Haven County families.

What does your home’s electrical panel do?

Your electrical panel (or breaker box) is sort of the nerve center of your home’s electrical infrastructure. In essence, it serves as a point of connection between the electricity coming into your home via utility lines and all the wiring inside your home. Each circuit routes power to outlets, systems, applications and fixtures throughout your home.

Your breakers can cut off or restore power as needed for electrical installations, service or safety precautions. There’s also a main breaker, which you can use to cut off power to the whole home.

How can you tell if a breaker has gone bad?

It’s important to address a failing breaker quickly because, if it fails completely, an otherwise manageable electrical fault can escalate to something more damaging, even a fire.

Here are four signs that a circuit breaker in your electrical panel may be failing:

  1. Constant trips. Do you need to make frequent journeys to your breaker box to turn on an aggravating breaker that’s flipped? It could be a situation where the breaker is overloaded, or the breaker may be bad. Either way, you should call a professional technician.
  2. Inconsistent power flow. It’s not always easy to notice power fluctuations. Some telltale signs can be fans with inconsistent speeds or irons that take too long to heat up.
  3. Flickering lights. If the wall sconce in your bedroom or the chandelier over your dining table has started flickering, it might be because of issues with the breaker regulating power to it.
  4. Strange odors or sounds. If you notice a burning smell or hear crackling from a breaker, shut it down right away. Not only does this indicate that there’s a breaker issue, but there could be a safety issue, too.

Seymour Energy Services is here for your circuit breakers.

The trained, licensed and attentive electricians at our company have helped fix and upgrade breakers and whole electrical panels for many western Connecticut homeowners. We can easily replace a bad breaker for you.

However, if your electrical panel is over 20 years old and showing its age, it could be time to upgrade the whole system. Doing so will not only prevent more breaker failures but also make your system safer and improve the performance of your home’s technology. If you’re a remote worker or have a student in the house, this can be extremely beneficial.

Don’t ignore a struggling breaker box. Contact us today to arrange an electrical service appointment.