What Is an Electrical Panel?

An electrical panel is a box in your basement, laundry room, or garage that houses circuit breakers. It serves two important functions: It carries electricity to your home’s outlets and appliances and prevents overloads that can cause house fires.

The power to your house begins at a power plant, then travels over high voltage wires to your local transformer (the tall towers you can see on the road). From there, it moves into your breaker panel.
Wire Ducts

Wire ducts (also known as wire troughs or wire raceways) are rigid cable trays that help organize and route cables and wires within an enclosure. They also offer protection from dust, debris and contaminants, while minimizing the risk of damage to the cables or wiring.

They are available in various models and colors, with either a solid cover or slots for easy rerouting and termination. Slotted ducts are further categorized into open and narrow slot types based on their slot size.

Narrow slot ducts are ideal for high density wiring sets because they provide multiple access points for small diameter wires. They also have rounded edges that minimize the risk of injury or damage to the cables. Open slot ducts are more suitable for expansive or complicated systems because they allow easier rerouting and termination. They are also available in a wide range of sizes to suit a variety of applications.
Din Rail

In nearly every industrial control panel you’ll see DIN rail, a metal structure that mounts electrical devices like circuit breakers, terminal blocks, and relays. It’s one of the most important parts of a control cabinet, because it provides an efficient mounting system for the products you need to install inside your panel.

DIN rail is a strip of flat metallic track that can be fastened to any surface to support the different kinds of industrial control hardware you need to use in your panels. It can either be mounted directly on the wall of your panel enclosure or within the interior panel itself. Its primary function is mechanical, not electrical – it doesn’t conduct currents the way a busbar does. Instead, it provides the structure that allows different manufacturers to offer standardized mounting across projects of all sizes and geolocations. You’ll find it in a variety of materials, including copper, aluminum and steel with a zinc-plated or chromate finish.
Circuit Breakers

Your electrical panel has circuit breakers that protect the line of electricity that runs through your home. They’re sized to match the load-carrying capacity of the wires that run through the circuit, so they interrupt power when those wires get hot. This prevents fires and keeps your home safe and functioning properly.

A breaker has two metal contacts inside of it that are separated by something like a spring or compressed air. When the breaker is flipped, mechanically-stored energy causes those contacts to separate and interrupt the flow of electricity.

Most people don’t even notice their breaker box, but if yours is constantly tripping, it could be an indicator that you need to move some appliances and devices to different circuits or that your home needs an upgrade. Contact us for a free estimate. Our electricians are happy to answer any questions you may have. Whether you need a simple replacement or a full service panel upgrade.

The electrical panel carries and controls the power to your home’s outlets, appliances, and fixtures. It also prevents overloads that can cause house fires. Various names for the electrical panel include: electrical service panel, load center, breaker box, switchboard, and in older homes, fuse box.

Enclosures are a crucial element in control panel design. The right enclosure can impact the flexibility, efficiency, and maintenance of the entire system. The right enclosure should be able to protect the components from physical impacts, maintain a stable temperature, and meet safety standards.

For example, NEMA 6 enclosures can withstand wet environments but don’t protect against prolonged submersion. Enclosures that meet NEMA ratings like this can help prevent corrosion that can affect relay contacts, switches, and other electrical devices. These enclosures also can withstand temperature changes and other environmental factors that may affect the performance of the electrical panel.

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