Another “Field Photo” from Construction Coach Gary Smith. Jump over to Instagram and hit the like button! So far the content has [igp-likes] likes.
Request an inspection by clicking blue button to the right or schedule a Google Helpout for video conference! –>
Here’s the Wikipedia entry for the electric panel shown in the video.
Zinsco electrical equipment is considered obsolete, due to a design flaw in which the circuit breaker’s connection to the bus bar becomes loose, causing arcing and subsequent overheating. Long term exposure to this heat can cause the breaker to fuse to the bus bar, making it impossible to remove. Even worse, it can cause the breaker’s contacts to fuse together, thus preventing the breaker from tripping even in an overcurrent situation, thereby causing a potential fire hazard.
Aftermarket replacements for the Zinsco breakers are available; however, it may be more cost effective simply to replace the entire panel with a more modern and safer design from another manufacturer, depending on the number of breakers to be replaced. If the bus bar shows signs of corrosion, or if any of the breakers show signs of overheating, the panel should be replaced entirely. Many electricians advocate replacement of the panel in any case, due to its historically poor reliability.
So let’s say you can’t be talked out of removing this fire hazard. Here’s a sample of what you’ll be faced with in terms of maintenance.
First, the photo above is an example of where your troubles will start. If the breakers don’t trip the burning starts here.
What about cost? (besides your health and safety)
A GE Double 40 Amp breaker at Home Depot will run you about $8.50 and tax. You’ll shell out $40 to $60 bucks for the same “replacement” breaker.
Ok. What’s the cost to jerk this thing out and “get safe”? Look to spend (and cost will vary depending on a host of issues – location – size – etc) from $850 to $1,350 for a new meter base similar to the one in the video.
I’ve Got One – NOW WHAT?
The Department of Consumer Product Safety wants to know if you’re reporting a problem. Report it here. Also, I’d like to know your story. Tell me about it via email. Hire a professional licensed electrician for an “in-depth” investigation. With a 25% failure rate I wouldn’t give keeping this thing the respect of even a “pre-thought” without a thorough once-over! For more information check out InspectAPedia.com, one of the most comprehensive websites on the topic.
SafeHome Inspections – Construction Coach – Call me: 601-454-5559
[igp-video src=”http://garynsmith.net/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/Client-Safety-is-Priority-1-builditright-deepsouth.mp4″ poster=”http://garynsmith.net/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/Client-Safety-is-Priority-1-builditright-deepsouth.jpg” size=”large”]
Taken: Dec 21, 2013 @ 01:52
MAP to this location below
(The map pointer is an indication of general location and is NOT the exact address of the above content.)
[igp_map lat=”32.37267076″ lon=”-90.124363056″ marker=”Northeast Jackson” style=”ROADMAP” class=”” width=”650″ height=”400″ width_type=”pixel” height_type=”pixel” zoom=”12″]