How To Look At A House
McGarry and Madsen's home inspection blog for buyers of
site-built, mobile/manufactured and modular homes
What is the average life expectancy of the electrical components of a house?
Friday, December 27, 2019
How long do the electrical components of a house last?
The electrical components of a house last from 3 to 100 years. Here’s our best estimate of the functional lifespan of each one. Click on the underlined component name to link to more detailed info about its life expectancy and characteristics.
ELECTRICAL Panel - 50+ years
Circuit Breaker - 30 to 40 years, average 35
AFCI or CAFCI Circuit Breaker - 30 to 40 years, average 35
GFCI Circuit Breaker - 30 to 40 years, average 35
GFCI Receptacle - 15 to 25 years, average 20
Light Fixture, Exterior - 25 to 45 years, average 35
Light Fixture, Interior - 40 to 50 years, average 45
Wall Switch - 30 to 40 years, average 35
Receptacle Outlet - 50+ years
Wire Metal - 100+ years
Wire Insulation - 50 to 80 years, average 70
Whole-House Generator - 10 to 20 years, average12
Whole-House Surge Protector - 2 to 5 years, average 3
Go to our blog post What is the average lifespan of the parts of a house? for rating of other house components. To understand the basis, potential use, and limitations of lifespan ratings, see our blog post How accurate are the average life expectancy ratings of home components? Are they actually useful?
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Field Guide for Home Inspectors, a quick reference for finding the age of 154 brands of HVAC systems, water heaters, and electrical panels, plus 210 code standards for site-built and manufactured homes, and the life expectancy rating of 195 home components. Available at amazon.com for $19.95.
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Here’s links to a collection of our other blog posts about ELECTRICAL WIRING:
NOTE: These life expectancies are based on data provided by InterNACHI, NAHB, FannieMae, and our own professional experience. Because of the numerous variables that can affect a lifespan, they should be used as rough guidelines only, and not relied upon as a warranty or guarantee of future performance.
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