How Much Does It Cost to Upgrade or Replace an Electrical Panel?
$175 - $375
$175 - $375
Updated July 6, 2022Reviewed by Salvatore Cutrona, Angi Expert Review Board member and founder of Cutrona Electric, LLC, in Sherman, CT
The average cost to upgrade or replace an electrical panel is $275, with most electrical panels priced between $175 and $375. Most homes have an electrical service between 100 to 200 amps, which puts you at the lower end of the price point, but some residential homes have a 400-amp panel, which can increase the price to $1,500 to $4,000.
Upgrades that keep the same amperage and wiring run the least. When you need an upgrade for added usage or modernization, many aspects can affect the total. Before you commit to an upgrade, be sure to consider all of these cost factors.
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|Typical Range||$175 - $375|
|Low End - High End||$175 - $375|
Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by HomeAdvisor members.
The cost to upgrade an electrical panel is $500 to $4,000 for most jobs, but the price to hire an electrician ranges from $50 to $100 per hour. Clients can expect to pay between $200 and $3,500 for their project labor if upgrading to a 400-amp panel.
An average upgrade takes about 4 to 8 hours to complete. This does not include rewiring or installing new electrical wiring.
|100||$500 – $1,500|
|150||$500 – $1,750|
|200||$750 – $2,000|
|400||$1,500 – $4,000|
The cost to update an electrical panel to 100-amp service is $500 to $1,500. The box runs $100 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 when they were built. If you have a 60-amp unit, upgrading might make it easier to consider improvements like a workshop or hot tub.
The price to upgrade your electrical panel to a 150-amp service is between $500 and $1,750 on average. The box alone costs between $150 to $250.
Upgrading to a 150-amp service is the typical starting range for an average-sized home, but if you use more electricity, you’ll want to upgrade to a 200-amp service.
A homeowner should expect to pay between $750 and $2,000 to upgrade an existing unit to 200-amp service, including professional installation. Alone, a 200-amp box will cost $250 to $350.
An increase to 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 eight to 20 hours of labor to install the panel. 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 regularly, it may be a great choice.
Whether it's a farmhouse in the country or a large commercial complex in the city, electrical systems are essential to most homes. That’s why it’s important to know and identify each part of your electrical panel while budgeting for that upgrade.
Electrical panel: An electrical panel is also called a breaker panel, breaker box, or service panel. It contains all of the breaker switches in your home.
Circuit breaker: Inside the electrical panel, you’ll find the circuit breakers that control the power in your house.
Subpanel: The subpanel is a smaller panel that controls specific sections of your home, such as your kitchen, bathroom, or garage.
Fuse box: Some older houses have a fuse box instead of a circuit breaker.
Replacing a fuse box with a breaker box runs from $1,500 to $2,000. If the wiring needs a complete overhaul, you might spend upwards of $4,500. While both options control the electrical current in your home, fuse boxes melt wires if there is an overload and must be replaced, whereas circuit breakers use a magnetic switch and don’t need replacing.
Upfront costs are straightforward when it comes to the price of the electrical panel by amperage and hourly installation rates, but you’ll find there are many upgrades and changes that can influence the final price of your project.
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 price typically includes outdoor equipment and the wiring to reach the new location.
Electrical boxes and electrical panels aren’t the same, 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 $900 or about $50 to $75 per square foot.
The cost to replace the fuse box with a circuit breaker panel is between $1,500 to $4,500 on average. This is because fuse boxes are often on older homes that weren’t built for higher amperages. Your electrician will need to completely rewire your home to accommodate for the upgrade as well as the new breaker panel.
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 the code allows using the existing box as a junction point
Where extensive work is required, you may need to have your home completely rewired. The price to rewire a house is between $6 and $10 per square foot, or between $12,000 to $20,000.
The price to install a new main breaker box is about $500 to $2,000. The 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 install a subpanel is $400 to $1,750. The price of your subpanel depends on the amperage and the number of circuits. Models have four to 20 or more circuits, and the amperage ranges from 100 to 150 amps.
|Subpanel Amperage||Subpanel Cost (Installed)|
|100||$400 – $1,000|
|125||$500 – $1,250|
|150||$600 – $1,750|
In most cases, you’ll install the subpanel near the main panel. 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 you’ll need to run electricity to these locations, too. 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 $200 to $800. This includes $50 to $250 for the unit and one to four hours in labor. You can potentially save money by hiring a pro to install a new meter while replacing a circuit breaker panel.
New Meter Base Cost
A new meter box costs $50 to $250 each. You’ll need to replace it if it’s damaged, increasing the amperage of your service, or you need one with more circuits.
Cost to Replace Service Entrance Cable
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. Your local utility company usually does this project, so you’ll need to call them for an estimate.
Additional wiring can quickly add up and become a confusing tangle of expenses if you’re not keeping an eye on the extent of your project. Here’s a breakdown of additional wiring to be on the lookout for as you budget.
The cost to install electrical wiring or panel is $600 to $2,300. 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 speaking to a professional during a 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.
Existing wiring costs around $6 to $8 per linear foot to repair, with labor costs of about $40 to $120 per hour. Depending on the extent of the damage, you may spend very little. For homes with old wiring, the cost will increase based on the length of the wires that need replacing and the time it takes for the electrician to repair them.
Your panel needs to be grounded to prevent electrocution. Copper grounding is a popular material for grounding your panel and costs around $1.50 per linear foot.
Replacing or repairing old parts of your current electrical box or fuse setup can help you save on overall costs if the project is minor. In other cases, the cost to repair an old piece of equipment will far exceed the practicality of simply upgrading to a new one. Here’s what you need to know to make the best decision about your electrical equipment.
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. The panels 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.
The cost to replace a circuit breaker switch or fuse is $100 to $250. Standard, 15- to 20-amp switches run $5 to $15 each. Standard, 15- to 20-amp fuses come in three packs for about $5 to $10.
Older circuits and fuses may be difficult to find and cost up to $70. The price for the installation should be about the same.
A fuse box replacement costs between $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 can be harder to replace in some cases. If you’re not looking to upgrade to a circuit breaker panel, ask your electrician if they have experience with the project.
Material costs are generally low, while the cumulative costs for rewiring, replacing wiring, and hiring a professional are where you’ll see the largest price increases. Here’s a breakdown of the material costs.
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 $60 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) breaker models: Cost between $25 to $60 and help protect against damaged wiring.
Ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) models: Cost between $35 to $50 on average and help to 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.
If you’re wondering whether it’s time to upgrade your electrical panel, there are a few signs that can help you make that decision:
Your current panel has less than 100 amps of power.
There’s physical damage to the panel.
You’re frequently unplugging appliances to power other appliances.
Your electrical box is inside.
Your home is over 20 years old and hasn’t had an upgrade.
The panels keep tripping.
The lighting flickers.
Electrical repairs are dangerous. The perils of replacing your box are too many to consider doing it yourself. Not only can you rewire it incorrectly or go against coding, but improper grounding and handling of electrical wiring can lead to electrocution. A certified professional pulls the proper permits, works with your local power supplier, and knows the ins and outs of the current code and safety requirements. This will ensure your family is safe from hazards and 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.
In some cases, upgrading an electrical panel can increase your home’s value. Often, you won’t see a direct increase, but home buyers want a safe home. Marketing your home with better electrical upgrades can encourage higher offers, as well as more offers, which can lead to bidding battles, earning you a higher closing price.
Upgrading an electrical panel from 100 to 200 amps costs $750 to $2,000. This does not include running new wiring for additional circuits.
Yes, in most circumstances, you will need a permit to upgrade your panel. If you’re upgrading the breaker box, moving it, upgrading your amperage service, or adding a new subpanel, you’ll want to contact your local building department. If you’re just replacing a light switch, receptacle, or single breaker in the electrical box, you might not need a permit, but it’s always a good idea to check or speak to a professional.
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’re building new additions to your home
Connecting electricity to a new home may be free if the lines are nearby. If not, expect to pay $25 to $50 per foot for remote properties. If power lines are not close to your home, the price can increase to up to $1,000. The cost to install a new panel ranges from $600 to $2,200.
Replacing an electrical panel takes four to eight hours. If you’re installing multiple units, it can double the time. You should also anticipate a longer timeframe if your electrician must access any wiring inside your walls, which increases both time and how much you’ll pay—generally by $150 to $450.