Your Service Panel
Know your service panel.
A service panel with fuses or circuit breakers is between the outside power lines that deliver electricity to your home and the inside wiring that delivers electricity to outlets and lights. If a short circuit or overload occurs in your home, a circuit breaker or fuse will interrupt the power.
You can use the service panel to cut power:
Have problems repaired.
- Use the main switch at the service panel to cut off all power when changing a fuse, doing an electrical project, or in the case of fire, shock or other emergency.
- If you don't have a main switch, you can turn off all the circuit breakers.
- If you need to turn off power to a single circuit, use a voltage tester to make sure the power is truly off for the circuit you'll be working on. You may have turned off the wrong circuit.
Remember, frequently blowing a fuse or tripping a breaker indicates a circuit is overloaded or something else is wrong. If this happens, have an electrician determine what the problem is and correct it. Never tamper with your electric meter – you could cause shock, explosion or fire.
Learn how electricity comes into your home and how to turn it off and on for your own safety. Do not overload circuits.