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Federal Pacific Electric Panels


Electricity is an essential part of modern life, powering our homes, businesses, and nearly everything we use on a daily basis. As a homeowner in the 02910 Cranston Providence, Rhode Island area, it is crucial to ensure that the electrical system in your home is safe and up to code. However, many homeowners are unaware of the potential hazards that may exist in their homes, specifically in their electrical panels.

One such potential hazard is the Federal Pacific Electric (FPE) panels, which were widely used in homes built between the 1950s and 1980s. These panels were responsible for approximately 2,800 fires and 13 deaths, according to a study conducted by the Consumer Product Safety Commission in the early 1980s. Today, these panels continue to pose a danger to homeowners, and it is important to understand the risks they may pose.

At B&K Electric, we are dedicated to providing our community with safe and reliable electrical services. As a family-owned and operated business based in Warwick, RI, we have proudly served homeowners in Cranston, Warwick, and all of Rhode Island for over seventeen years. Our team of licensed electricians specializes in electrical repair, panel maintenance, and installation, making us the go-to electrician for your home or business in the Warwick area and the greater Providence area.

Understanding Federal Pacific Electric Panels

Federal Pacific Electric was one of the largest manufacturers of electrical panels, circuit breakers, and other electrical equipment in the United States from the 1950s to the 1980s. These panels were installed in millions of homes across the country, including many in the Cranston Providence area. However, in the 1980s, the company began facing lawsuits and allegations of a flawed design in their circuit breakers, which could potentially lead to fires.

The issue with FPE panels lies in their inability to trip or shut off properly. This means that if an overload or short circuit occurs, the circuit breaker may not trip to cut off the flow of electricity. As a result, the wires may overheat, causing electrical fires. Additionally, FPE panels have been found to have issues with their bus bars, which are the conductors that carry electricity throughout the panel. These bars have a higher chance of overheating and failing, leading to potential electrical hazards.

Signs of a Federal Pacific Electric Panel

If your home was built between the 1950s and 1980s, there is a chance that you may have a Federal Pacific Electric panel. However, the only way to determine if you have one is to have a professional electrician inspect it. There are also some common warning signs that may indicate the presence of an FPE panel in your home, including:

1. Frequently tripping circuit breakers: If your circuits trip frequently, it could be a sign that your panel is not functioning properly and needs to be inspected.

2. Flickering lights: This could be a sign that there is an issue with the flow of electricity in your panel, potentially due to an FPE panel.

3. Burn marks or strange odors: If you see burn marks or smell strange odors around your electrical panel, it is important to have it inspected immediately as it could be a sign of overheating or potential electrical fires.

Safety Measures for Federal Pacific Electric Panels

If an FPE panel is found in your home, it is important to take immediate action to ensure the safety of your household. The most effective solution is to have the panel replaced by a licensed and experienced electrician. This will not only eliminate the potential hazards associated with FPE panels, but it will also ensure that your home’s electrical system is up to code and functioning properly.

It is also important to have regular maintenance and inspection of your electrical panel, regardless of its age or manufacturer. Our team at B&K Electric can help you identify and address any potential issues, ensuring the safety and efficiency of your home’s electrical system.

Trust B&K Electric with Your Electrical Needs

At B&K Electric, we understand the importance of a safe and reliable electrical system for your home. That is why we are dedicated to providing top-quality electrical services to our community. As a family-owned and operated business, we prioritize customer service and satisfaction, ensuring that each project is completed with the highest level of care and attention to detail.

As a licensed and experienced electrician, we have the knowledge and expertise to handle any electrical repair, panel maintenance, or installation in your home or business in the Warwick area and the greater Providence area. Contact us today to schedule an inspection or service and ensure the safety and efficiency of your home’s electrical system.


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