Are FPE and Zinsco Brand Electrical Panels Safe?
Both FPE (Federal Pacific Electric) and Zinsco brand circuit breaker panels are not safe and should be replaced, plain and simple! They are no longer made by the original manufacturer because those companies have long since gone out of business.
Although there are repairs and expensive “after-market” breakers for both of these brands of panel, there are other design problems with them so the best remedy is to replace them entirely. Find out more about the specific issues with each below.
FPE Electrical Panel Problems
In the case of FPE, they lost their UL listing when it was discovered their breakers would not necessarily trip when they needed to. A circuit breaker is always sized to the load that it serves and the wire size it is supposed to protect.
For example, a 14 gauge copper wire used in homes today, is rated to handle 15 amps maximum. For this reason, it is always supposed to be connected to a 15 amp breaker and that 15 amp breaker should shut off if a load of more than 15 amps is imposed upon it. FPE breakers are not reliable in always shutting off in this condition.
Unfortunately, there isn’t a way to know for sure if yours will work correctly or not. The problem that can occur if electricity does not shut off under overload conditions can be as serious as a home fire.
Zinsco Electrical Panel Problems
Zinsco or Zinsco-Sylvania is the name given to a brand of panel that was commonly installed up to the mid-1970’s. It was a very popular product and installed throughout North America. Production was halted when design flaws were discovered. However, previously purchased panels were still being installed for a time after that.
The deficiencies that became evident were serious enough to be considered both a fire and electrical shock risk. Panels were known to fail, while still conducting power.
Denver electricians safely installing or replacing electrical panels, fuse box upgrades, or circuit breaker repair in these Colorado neighborhoods:
Arvada, Aurora, Boulder, Brighton, Broomfield, Castle Pines, Castle Rock, Centennial, Commerce City, Denver, Englewood, Erie, Genesee, Golden, Greenwood Village, Highlands Ranch, Lafayette, Lakewood, Littleton, Lone Tree, Louisville, Northglenn, Parker, Superior, Thornton, Westminster, Wheat Ridge and surrounding areas.
Your electrical panel controls all the electricity in your home! Make sure it is up to code and up to speed. Contact Electri-Serve for an electrical panel upgrade estimate today.