According to Forbes, the average cost of an electrical panel upgrade is $1,800 (as of 2023). However, you can spend $5,000 or more depending on various factors.¹ To help you understand if the cost is worth it, we’ll explore these factors and some benefits of updating your electrical panel.
The cost of an upgrade is largely determined by the new panel’s amperage rating and labor costs. An electrical panel links your home to the utility grid and supplies electricity to every branch circuit. Therefore, it must meet your electrical needs, while functional circuit breakers cut power if there’s a fault or overload to avoid major damage and fires.
Therefore, an electrical panel upgrade increases capacity and avoids many hazards. But its cost is impacted by the following:
The electrical panel’s capacity will ensure it meets your home’s power needs. If you have an older 60-amp panel, high-power appliances can overload it. The most common amperage ratings for new electrical panels include:
Relocating an electrical panel to another room or outdoors can add $1,000 to $2,700 to the overall project cost.¹ That’s because substantial electrical and other infrastructure changes will be needed in addition to replacing the panel.
If your electrical system was installed less than 25 years ago, you may not need to replace the main panel. Adding a subpanel to increase capacity may be possible. A subpanel can be installed for $400 to $2,000.¹
Depending on the age and condition of the panel and the system, you may have to replace wiring, circuits, and receptacles, which increases the cost of the upgrade. Replacing a circuit breaker switch ranges from $100 to $200 (each costs extra on top of the price of the service panel). A meter box is another component that may need to be updated. It must be installed by the electrical utility company and costs $100 to $500.¹
Installing an electrical panel requires a lot of work and experience. The quality of the work is as important as the quality of the equipment. Insecure wiring, installing the wrong-sized wires, choosing an improper wire length, or loose connections can cause a wide range of problems. Therefore, consider the cost of labor a sign an electrical contractor is focused on getting the job done right.
While an electrical panel upgrade can be costly, it’s worth it if your current panel isn’t meeting your needs. The panel should be replaced if you’ve installed new appliances, such as a convection oven or hot tub. Also, consider an upgrade if it’s not working properly.
If you reset the circuit breakers often, hear sizzling or buzzing sounds from outlets, need to unplug appliances to use others, have flickering lights, or have high electricity bills, updating your electrical panel is a good idea. Also, replace it if it’s hot to the touch, smells like smoke, is rusty, or is visibly damaged.
An electrical panel upgrade also comes with these benefits:
Our licensed electrical technicians upgrade electrical panels in homes across Southern California. We help increase capacity to support high-power appliances. Whenever possible, we can repair your existing panel, but recommend having at least a 200-amp unit to ensure your home and family are safe. You can also save on routine maintenance and emergency calls with our X Protection Plan. To request an electrical panel upgrade or receive a free quote, book an appointment online, contact us directly, or call (833) 729-9735.