How Much Does It Cost to Upgrade or Replace an Electrical Panel?
$529 - $1,963
$529 - $1,963
Updated February 9, 2022Reviewed by Salvatore Cutrona, Licensed Master Electrician.
The average cost to replace an electrical panel is $1,199, with a typical range between $529 and $1,963. Upgrading to 400-amp service costs more, with a typical range of $1,500 to $4,000. Upgrades that keep the same amperage and wiring run the least.
Whether it's a farm home in the country or a large commercial complex in the city, electrical systems are the lifeblood of modern properties. Circuit breaker boxes control power in the house. When you need an upgrade for added usage or modernization, many aspects can affect the total. Before you commit, be sure to consider all of these cost factors.
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|Typical Range||$529 - $1,963|
|Low End - High End||$125 - $3,600|
Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 19,420 HomeAdvisor members.
The cost to upgrade an electrical panel is $500 to $4,000 for most jobs. The price to hire an electrician ranges from $50 to $100 per hour. Clients can expect to pay between $200 and $2,000 for their project labor.
An average upgrade takes about 4 to 8 hours to complete. This does not include rewiring or installing new wiring.
|100||$500 - $1,500|
|150||$500 - $1,750|
|200||$750 - $2,000|
|400||$1,500 - $4,000|
A homeowner should contact the local utility to find out if the supply line to the property needs an upgrade to support the added power. Costs could more than double if extensive work, such as trenching, is required. However, if your existing line can support 125, 150, or 200 amps, you can save money by installing one of these boxes. Salvatore Cutrona, Expert Review Member and Licensed Master Electrician says, “The most common upgrade for panels is 200-amps, so it would be normal to check to see if the existing line can also support 200.”
Call a licensed professional for specific project pricing and to see if your electrical wiring also needs work.
A homeowner should expect to pay between $750 and $2,000 to upgrade an existing unit to a 200-amp service, including professional installation. Alone, a 200-amp box will cost $100 to $350. In comparison, a 150-amp version runs between $50 and $200.
An increase to 150-amp or 200-amp service gives you room to grow. Homes with additions or large garages and hefty electrical equipment may need added amperage to support the extra power draw.
The cost to upgrade to a 400-amp service ranges from $1,500 to $4,000. This includes the panel at around $500, plus 8 to 20 hours in labor.
The total for installation depends mostly on the setup. In some cases, your electrician will install two 200-amp panels, using one of them as a subpanel. Although these models run about half the price of a 400-amp one, labor for two takes longer.
Most homes don’t need this much power. If you have a large house in an area with hot summers, or you use jetted tubs on a regular basis, it may be a great choice.
The cost to update an electrical panel to 100-amp service is $500 to $1,500. The box runs $50 to $200, so labor is the biggest part of the total.
Older homes often run low-amperage boxes because they didn't have central air, modern appliances, or today's electronics in mind. If you have a 60-amp unit, upgrading might make it easier to consider improvements like a workshop or hot tub.
Replacing a fuse box with a breaker box runs $1,000 to $2,000. It may cost more if the wiring needs a complete overhaul.
Some older houses have a fused electrical service. There are positive aspects of both, but a modern circuit breaker usually offers the most flexibility for future home improvements.
|Pros||Easy to fix||More amperage|
|Cons||Can't add more power||Harder to repair|
The price to install a new electrical breaker box is about $500 to $2,000. Exact cost depends on the number of circuits and the amperage of the unit. If the main box is full, installing a subpanel will allow you to add more circuits. You may also need to provide power to new rooms when remodeling or building additions.
The cost to replace a circuit breaker switch or fuse is $100 to $200. Standard, 15- to 20-amp switches run $5 to $15 each. Standard, 15- to 20-amp fuses come in packs of three for about $5 to $10.
Older circuits and fuses may be difficult to find and cost up to $70. Price for installation should be about the same.
The cost to install electrical wiring or panel is $600 to $2,200. The total depends on the amount you need to replace.
Panel upgrades are not always independent projects. You might have to deal with:
Electricians who notice extensive wear and tear may recommend upgrades to other components. Necessary updates can significantly increase the costs of a given project, but they support a safe and functional power system.
Rewiring an electric panel costs $500 to $4,500, depending on the extent of the job. If your house needs all new wiring, you’ll pay the most. Replacing one or two circuits runs less.
Replacing an electric panel sometimes calls for rewiring, but it’s hard to tell without a professional consultation. If you’re on a tight budget, it’s better to ask a pro about the condition of your system before you get started.
Moving an electrical panel outside costs $1,500 to $2,500. If you need to move your electrical box as well, you’ll pay on the higher end. This typically includes equipment rated for outdoors and wiring to reach the new location.
Electrical boxes and panels aren’t the same thing, even if some sites use them interchangeably. The box usually refers to the main connection that has an emergency shutoff.
Electrical box regulations now require outdoor installation. In a fire, firefighters can turn off the home's power safely and quickly from the exterior.
Homes more than 15 years old may still have indoor boxes. Project estimates increase if a professional must tear out the panel or wiring to perform the necessary work. Drywall repair costs $300 to $850 or about $1.50 per square foot.
The cost to replace a Federal Pacific or Zinsco panel ranges from $1,500 to $4,000. Since these are older systems, this includes some upgrades to wiring. If you have one, you’ll want to call a pro as soon as possible to upgrade. They have design flaws that could cause a house fire.
These companies sold a series of faulty circuit panels, primarily in the 1960s through the 1980s. The breakers wouldn’t trip, which started several fires. Other brands’ boxes, like Challenger or PushMatic, had similar problems.
"Electricity use keeps going up, thanks in large part to an increase in air conditioning, so it's critical that a home electrical system can handle the load."
Dan DiClerico, HomeAdvisor Smart Home Strategist and Home Expert.
Fuse box replacement costs $200 to $2,000. It depends mostly on the size of the box and how easy it is to find parts.
Fuse boxes are old technology, which means that they can be harder to replace in some cases. If you’re not looking to upgrade to a circuit breaker panel, be sure to ask your electrician if they have experience with the project.
Estimated rates for moving a panel from one area of the home to another range from $1,000 to $3,000. Actual costs can vary depending on several project factors:
Whether the unit is indoors or outdoors.
How many floors are in the home.
How many circuits will move.
Whether code allows using the existing box as a junction point.
Where extensive work is required, the project may be considered a rewire. Price will change accordingly.
Retail price of the panel itself is $50 to $500. Total material costs depend on the type of unit and features you choose. In some cases, the local power company will need to install a new power supply and meter to meet the property's new electrical needs. Meters cost $100 to $650 to replace. Small materials like fittings, connectors, and fasteners usually total less than $100.
|100||$50 - $200|
|150||$50 - $200|
|200||$100 - $350|
|400||$400 - $600|
AFCI and GFCI breakers can cost $30 to $100 each, up to 10 times the price of standard versions. These units offer extra protection to help reduce the likelihood of electrical hazards, like fires or electrocution. Code requires this type of protection in areas of the home such as common rooms, bedrooms, bathrooms, and kitchens.
Arc fault circuit interrupter (AFCI) breakers protect against damaged wiring.
Ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) models protect against water damage.
When the system needs both types, you have two choices. You can either use a combination AFCI/GFCI breaker or an AFCI breaker with a GFCI receptacle. They run about $40 to $60 at home improvement stores. These units are usually cheaper than buying the specialty products separately.
The cost to install a subpanel is $400 to $1,750. This depends on the amperage and the number of circuits. Models have 4 to 20 or more circuits, and the amperage ranges from 100 to 150 amps.
|100||$400 - $1,000|
|125||$500 - $1,250|
|150||$600 - $1,750|
In most cases, you’ll install the subpanel near the main one. Just make sure you have about three feet of clearance around the unit.
If you’re planning a home addition, a mother-in-law suite or an in-ground pool, you should think about the power needed to run it. A subpanel can be a great choice to increase your total amperage or add extra circuits.
The cost to install or replace an electric meter box is $100 to $650. This includes $50 to $250 for the unit and 1 to 4 hours in labor.
Many homeowners install a new meter at the same time as replacing a circuit breaker panel. You may save money by hiring a pro to do both.
A new meter box costs $50 to $250 each. You’ll need to replace it if it’s damaged, are increasing the amperage of your service, or you need one with more circuits.
The cost to replace a service entrance cable ranges from $1,000 to $1,500 for overhead lines but may run $5,000 or more if it’s underground. This project is usually done by your local utility company. You’ll need to call them to get an estimate.
Electrical repairs are dangerous. The perils of replacing your box are too many to consider doing it yourself. Pros pull the proper permits and work with your local power supplier. A professional will also be familiar with current code and safety requirements. This will ensure your family is safe from hazards, as well as prevent expensive repairs in the future.
When you decide to upgrade, start by finding licensed and insured electricians near you. Get quotes from at least three different contractors. Use a combination of trust, cost, experience, and reputation to make a final decision.
Upgrading an electrical panel from 100 to 200 amps costs $750 to $2,000. This does not include running new wiring for additional circuits.
You should consider upgrading your electrical panel if:
It’s more than 25 years old.
You need more power than your current system.
You’re adding new electrical systems to your property.
Your house is full of power strips.
You may need to upgrade or replace your electrical box if:
Your house has fuse boxes.
You notice flickering lights.
You want to add more appliances.
You can often save money and hassle by upgrading during a remodeling project or addition.
Replacing individual circuit breakers costs $100 to $200 each.
Fixing a breaker costs $100 to $200. In some cases, the electrician will replace it.
Connecting electricity to a new home may be free if the lines are nearby, or $25 to $50 per foot for remote properties. The cost to install a new panel ranges from $600 to $2,200.
Replacing an electrical panel takes 4 to 8 hours. If you’re installing multiple units, it can double the time.