Switchboard maintenance

Switch boards serve commercial and residential buildings by ensuring proper distribution of electrical energy throughout.  To facilitate the safe distribution of electrical energy, switch boards must have proper maintenance. Besides the proper design and construction, maintenance of switch boards is crucial for efficiency of switchboards. In some cases, if switchboards are not maintained properly, they turn unsafe for our use.

Let’s learn more about maintaining electrical switch boards.

Why should we care for switchboard maintenance?

Maintenance of switchboards is important for them to remain functional. Switchboards that undergo corrosion with time, fail to perform effectively in the long run. Hence, we should adopt methods to ensure proper maintenance of electrical switchboards in industrial and residential buildings.

Proper maintenance of switchboards ensures their longer lifespan. If maintained properly, switchboards do not need to be replaced from time to time. In case of expected power failure or outage, switchboards have fewer failures if the maintenance is good.

Tests for maintenance:

A routine test of switchboards is a must for maintaining their efficiency.  The following three maintenance tests can be adopted for this purpose. They are:

1. Insulation resistance tests:

This maintenance test is done with the help of a megohmmeter. The insulation resistance test gives you a clear idea of the insulation of circuit breakers and bus switches. If you have lower readings on the test, it indicates that the insulation level is falling and appropriate measures must be taken to fix the insulation.

2. High resistance test:

If the primary circuit of switchboards needs to be repaired or modified, perform a high resistance test to be more precise. A high resistance test generally follows repairments and verification of switchboard insulation. This test ensures that no current flows between two isolated points. A high resistance test ensures that the switchboard is safe to use.

Equipment needed for switchboard maintenance:

Certain equipment is necessary for the proper maintenance of switchboards. These include:

  • Inspection racks for circuit breakers.
  • Premium quality insulation resistance tester.
  • Good quality ammeter and multimeters.

Frequency of maintenance: 

It is good to keep your switchboard checked out frequently. Inspect and maintain the switchboards properly every three years. You can also inspect your switchboards every year.

How to have preventive maintenance of switchboards?

For a new switchboard, it is recommended to inspect it for any signs of damage. Switchboards that are in use for a considerable amount of time, require some preventative maintenance procedures to ensure their longevity. Preventive maintenance includes the following methods:

  • To ensure that the switchboard is functional, check for tightness of the switchboard.
  • Deeply clean the internal parts of the switchboards to avoid any accumulation of dust.
  • Frequently check the condition of the insulation of the circuit breakers. If any conductors show signs of damage, replace them immediately.
  • Keep a close tab on the performance of the circuit breakers.
  • Check the conditions of weather seals that are prone to erosion with time.
  • Always keep the switchboards in cool and dry places.
  • Maintain bolted panel doors to be secure.
  • Control wirings need to be checked frequently. Replace them when needed.

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