Home inspectors and electricians are recommending that homeowners with homes that contain a specific type of electrical box should get a replacement. If your home was built between 1950 and 1990 it may contain a Federal Pacific Electric (FPE) circuit breaker panel along with Stab-Lok circuit breakers essentially putting your home at risk of a breaker malfunction resulting in fire which could destroy your home. Reports indicate that fires have ranged in size from a small fire in a confined area to total destruction of property. In one fire, the homeowner reported hearing a popping sound before the lights went out. Flames began shooting from the circuit panel, quickly transferring to the walls sending fire towards the attic and smoke throughout the home.
Electrical Panel Breakers Prevent Faults & Overloads
The breakers inside the electrical panel are designed to protect your home from experiencing serious electrical faults by preventing outside power surges, circuit overload and short circuits from travelling into the panel. If an overload should occur, a breaker protects your property by tripping and shutting down the power coming to the circuit. If your breaker is defective or not operating the way it should your panel could catch on fire putting you and your home at risk. It has been documented that Federal Pacific Electric circuit breakers don’t turn off and in many cases stay on which can result in a fire hazard.
Federal Pacific Electric Company
Federal Pacific has a long history of fabricating positive testing results and shipping and manufacturing hazardous material. As early as 1955, Underwriters Laboratories (UL) caught the company applying UL labels that were forged and despite a judge imposed restraining order Federal Pacific Electric Company continued tricking and deceiving the inspectors and the public during the 1960 and 1970’s. In the 1980’s the company notified the Consumer Product Safety Commission that some of the breakers did not comply with UL standards although they also claimed that the boxes did not present a fire hazard in anyway despite the fact that the boxes did not meet current safely standards.
Federal Pacific Defective Stab Lok Breakers
Federal Pacific is no longer in business but their products are a potential fire hazard that continues to put homes at risk. A Federal Pacific engineer by the name of James F Meacham was essentially the whistle blower that brought to light examples of substandard practices performed by the company. Testing done on breakers since the 1980’s have concluded that one in four Stab-Lok breakers are defective and will not trip. In 1983, the Consumer Product Safety Commission closed its two-year investigation but did not initiate a product recall due to budgeting restraints. It is estimated that 2,800 fires each year result from FPE breaker panel malfunction. Federal Pacific may have been out of business for years, but the damage caused by faulty products continues and hundreds of thousands of homes are still at risk.
Professional Electrical Inspections, Troubleshooting, Fixture Installations, Emergency Repairs, Preventative Maintenance & Home Audio, Visual & Lighting Consultants in Pompano Beach, Boca Raton, Davie, Fort Lauderdale & South Florida
If your home is between 25 and 65 years old, contact the professional electricians at Burley Electrical. A Federal Pacific Electric Circuit breaker panel may have been installed in your home and should be replaced immediately. A Federal Pacific panel will often have its name or logo on the front cover and you will find the name Stab-lok towards the center or side of the panel. The intact breakers will have a red line across the switches. Contact Burley Electrical Services today and speak with a customer service representative to schedule an inspection of your home by one of our master electricians to discuss, diagnose and repair your electric issues.