The Washington DC area is known for its great neighborhoods, full of houses with charm and character. Many of these houses are equipped with undersized electrical systems from decades ago. We still occasionally encounter cloth wrapped service cables and wiring, which become frayed, brittle, and potentially hazardous.
These 100 amp systems originally installed weren’t built to handle the electrical needs of today’s homeowners. Central air conditioning, modern appliances, and always-on computers can overload a weak system at the circuit panel and cause catastrophic results. Most older panels do not have a main breaker, so a short circuit doesn’t just turn off the electricity, it can result in a major electrical fire.
A Heavy Up is the job of replacing your old panel and service cable with one of a larger capacity. It requires a permit; and a licensed, highly experienced electrician must perform this task. A county official inspects and approves the work, followed by Pepco or another utility company making the final connection at the line side of the meter. The end result is stable power, better grounding, space for additional circuits, and a main breaker shut off, in case of emergencies.