You may have heard that Federal Pacific Breaker Panels (FPE) are not safe. Select electrical panels have been found to be defective over the years. Burns and fires have occurred and raised concern over the safety of these electrical panels. Therefore, these particular models have been discontinued as the problems were identified. That means you can no longer buy these panels. However, if you had them installed prior to them being discontinued, you may still have them. Most people that still have them are not aware of the dangers.
Are All Federal Pacific Panels Unsafe?
No. Not all Federal Pacific panels are dangerous. The defective panels seem to be limited to the Stab-Lok brand. You can determine if your breaker box is a Stab-Lok by looking for the FPE logo on the front of the box.
Furthermore, these boxes were installed before the 1990s. Therefore, if your home was built before this time, it is important for you to check if you still have one of these panels. If you do, and even if you never had a problem before, please call an electrician to replace it as soon as possible, since these panels are defective and the likelihood of damage and even fire is quite high.
Known defective manufacturers
The known defective manufacturers are Pacific Electric, Zinsco, and Pushmatic. If you happen to have any of those models, you should definitely be aware that you should replace them as soon as possible.
Are there a lot of Federal Pacific Panels in Hawaii?
Unfortunately yes. We have seen them in houses and in condo buildings as well. Many buildings in Waikiki still have them, for example. The main reason for it is that the cost of replacing it for the entire building is expensive and it also means that every owner has to be willing to upgrade the panel for their unit. However, the risk of fire and damage far outweigh the cost of replacing a panel, and that is the reason why we strongly recommend homeowners and building managers to consider upgrading ASAP.
Does PRO Electrician Honolulu have experience upgrading FPE panels?
Yes. We have upgraded many electric panels over the years. For both homeowners, and entire condo buildings in Honolulu. Please don’t hesitate to call our electricians for any questions, and free quotes. We would love to help you keep your home safe from electric hazards. Call 808-460-6336.