The electric panel is probably one of (if not the most) dangerous part of a home inspection. It has the most variables for injury. Behind the dead front (technical term for the panel cover could be anything. There could be vermin, moisture, or anything else. one thing is for sure that we will find there though – electricity. Electricity is a powerful force that needs to be contained, and that is part of the panel cover’s job.
Now most of us are not going around our home taking the cover off of our electric panel. But that does not mean we don’t need to take precautions. For instance, if you electric panel is in a garage or somewhere else moisture can get to it, be sure to keep it protected. Keep items away from it that may be wet – like umbrellas, garden utensils, and the like.
Something that many of us will eventually have to do is switch a breaker back on. When there is a power surge, a breaker trips. When it does, the breaker will be in the center position. Before we go in and start turning breakers back on, be sure whatever tripped it won’t happen again. Also, be sure to touch the panel with the back of your hand before opening it for a safety check.
Being careful with an electric panel can take a bit of extra thought, but is well worth it.