There are plenty of benefits in upgrading your home to 200-amp service. These benefits are only realizable by following the proper procedure. Know the dangers, risks, and benefits associated with this procedure to increase your chances of enjoying it thoroughly.
It’s essential to evaluate and understand a few factors first before making such a huge decision. For example, don’t ignore the role the meter base plays in all this. Is the service wiring capable of supporting such a shift? What are the costs? Do you have enough electrical panels? What is involved in upgrading to a 200-amp service?
A licensed electrician will need to obtain a permit to upgrade to 200-amp service. You'll likely need to disconnect the power to replace the meter base and install the 200-amp service wire, main disconnect, and 200-amp electrical service panel. The electrical work will need to be inspected by your local building inspector to obtain a certificate of occupancy to authorize the utility company to turn the electrical service on.
It’s also important to know issues such as when to upgrade your electrical service. You would be doing yourself a massive disservice by proceeding with the upgrade if you have no idea what it involves either. This article examines everything you should know to give you a better chance of doing it right!
What You Should Know Before Upgrading to 200-Amp Service
With proper care and maintenance, your service panels should last years. Occasionally, you would need to replace a few parts that suffer damages from the effects of wear-and-tear. That said, their durability doesn’t mean that they can meet the needs of your home thoroughly.
Follow these steps to determine whether your home is suitable for an upgrade.
- Evaluate its electrical needs
- Select the most suitable panel for your home
- Install the panel, circuit breakers, and other systems
- Confirm if all individual circuits are correctly connected
- Test the system thoroughly before documenting everything
Upgrading to a 200-amp system or service requires plenty of work. You'll need to work with an electrician to obtain permits. The electrician also has to coordinate with the utility provider to install underground service and the meter base.
How to Know if Your System is Ready for a 200-Amp Service Upgrade
You have probably taken note of a new electrical appliance or system that you feel would suit your home perfectly. However, you’re unsure if your electrical system or service can support this or any other addition.
Examples of new appliances that might tax your home’s electrical demands include:
- Electric range
- Clothes dryer
- Central air conditioner
- Electric oven
- Electric water heater
- Room air conditioner
- Sump pump
- Hot tub or spa
You would need to consider upgrading to a 200-amp service if you wish to install these appliances. Apart from that, you would also need to upgrade if you notice hissing from the current system. Upgrade if the circuit breakers keep tripping.
Are you also living in a house that’s more than 30 years old? In that case, you need to upgrade to a 200-amp service as soon as possible. You should also upgrade if you notice frequent yet unexplained flickering of the light.
How Much Does a 200-amp Service Upgrade Cost?
In the United States, the cost of upgrading to a 200-amp service depends on numerous factors. Despite that, the national average cost is between $3,500 and $4,500.
Nevertheless, that’s the national average. In some places, you might end up paying more than $4,500 or less than $3,500. It’s easy to have this piece of information to help you plan well. Type electrical panel cost calculator on your preferred search engine and provide your zip code.
The 200-amp panel box with breakers costs between $800 and $1200 to buy. The rest of the money goes into buying the other components and systems needed. The balance is made of mostly labor for the licensed electrician, permits, and inspections.
What are the Benefits of Upgrading to 200-amp Service?
Is an upgrade from your current service to the 200-amp system necessary? Does the upgrade present benefits or only lead you into a period of more despair? Below is a list of the many ways that you stand to benefit from the upgrade.
- Reduced power surges, which allows your electrical appliances to last much longer
- Allows the panel to operate more efficiently, which saves you tons of money
- It makes the home much safer, thus reducing home insurance premiums
- Reduces the number of overcrowded breakers, thus preventing breakout of electrical fires
- Enhances the value of the home, which would attract better prices in case you decide to put the house up for sale
- Improved capacity for powering large electrical appliances simultaneously
- Larger thus capable of accommodating additional circuits without much difficulty
- Prepares room for future electrical additions and demands
Does a 200-amp Service Upgrade Increase the Value of Your Home?
Do you plan to sell your home? If that’s the case, you might want to find different ways of enhancing its value. That way, you would be in a much better chance of attracting buyers who have no problem paying the high prices that you quote.
Houses built 30 or so years ago have old electrical systems and services. Most of them run on 60-amp services. You would struggle to attract the best prices for a house with such aging systems. A house with a modern 200-amp system fetches more.
How does the property’s value improve? First, the home is now much safer. There’s little to no chance of fires breaking out and causing unimaginable damages to the property and the assets in it.
Essentially, you have made the property better, safer, and more efficient than it has ever been. You have also dragged it into the 21st Century by upgrading the electrical system. For your efforts, you can now confidently expect to sell the property for more profits.
An upgrade from the current system to a 200-amp service is more than advisable. It could spell the difference between electrical fires and living in a safe house. The upgrade also boosts your home’s value, thus increasing your chances of earning more if you opt to sell the property.