How to Increase Amps in a Breaker Box

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Things You'll Need

  • Screwdriver

  • New breaker

Warning

Don't attempt to work on a live electrical circuit. Seek help from a qualified electrician if you're not comfortable doing this job.

Increase the amps in your breaker box by changing the circuit breaker box.

Increasing the amperage of the circuit breakers in your circuit breaker box shouldn't be done on a whim. The circuit breakers perform an important function in your home's electrical system by protecting overloads in the wiring. There are instances when increasing the amperage of a circuit breaker in the breaker box is a good idea. Finishing a basement, or other applications where you will have control over the wiring you'll be installing, are good examples.

Step 1

Consult with a qualified electrician before increasing the size of a circuit breaker. A circuit breaker that's too large can allow too much current to flow through inadequate wiring.

Step 2

Turn off the power to the circuit breaker box at the disconnect box. This is usually located by the power meter. Flip the switch to OFF, then test a light or outlet in the house to make sure it actually is off.

Step 3

Remove the outer panel of the breaker box by removing four screws from the cover and pulling the metal cover off.

Step 4

Firmly pull the circuit breaker out of the box; no tools are necessary, just give it a firm pull.

Step 5

Take the circuit breaker to an electrical supply or home improvement store and buy the same type of circuit breaker in the correct amperage.

Step 6

Push the new breaker into the box by pushing it firmly in until it's seated in the box. Replace the panel and turn the power back on.


Nichole Liandi

Based in Virginia, Nichole Liandi has been a freelance writer since 2005. Her articles have appeared on various print and online publications. Liandi has traveled extensively in Europe and East Asia and incorporates her experiences into her articles. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in history from West Virginia University.