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CostHelper > Home and Garden  > Electrical, HVAC & Energy Efficiency > Electrician

Electrician Cost


How Much Does an Electrician Cost?

 
low costAdding an Outlet: $60-$800average costUpgrading an Electrical Panel: $800-$4,000+high costRewiring a House: $3,500-$30,000+
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  Typical costs:
  • Although there are still a few low-cost areas where electricians work for $30-$50 an hour, typically they charge $50-$100 an hour or more depending on local rates and their qualifications. Some electricians quote a flat fee per job rather than an hourly rate, depending on the scope and type of work to be performed. There may also be a minimum $50-$150 service charge to come to the house and evaluate the problem. Total cost for hiring an electrician will depend on the type of work done.
  • Adding an electrical outlet typically starts at $60-$125 to replace an existing standard outlet with a GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupter) receptacle; can be $150-$250 for running a new 120V circuit off the electrical panel; and $300-$800 for installing a new 240V circuit on the main electrical panel.
  • Upgrading an electrical panel typically costs $800-$1,200 to change an existing panel to 100 amps, or $1,500-$2,000 for a new panel. It can cost $1,300-$3,000 to upgrade to 200 amps and $2,000-$4,000 for 400 amps. Expect to pay $500-$1,000 for installing a new sub-panel.
  • Average total costs for rewiring a house start at $3,500-$8,000 for a moderate-sized home with easy access to the crawlspace and attic, but it can cost $8,500-$30,000 or more for rewiring a large house and/or one with difficult access.
  • A wide variety of projects might require the skills of a licensed electrician. For example, hiring an electrician to install an electric baseboard heater can cost $125-$300 (not including the heater); and expect to pay $100-$250 to have an electrician install a wall-mounted towel warmer. Installation of recessed lighting in a ceiling that's already torn open for remodeling typically costs $50-$200 per light; installation of recessed can lights designed to fit in a small opening can cost $100-$200 each, or more if access is limited. And it can cost $400-$1,000 to install a power transfer switch on a home's main electrical panel to make it possible for a portable generator to power several circuits with a single extension cord.
Related articles: Adding an Electrical Outlet, Rewiring a House, Upgrading an Electrical Panel, Recessed Lighting, Construction

What should be included:
  • HomeTips.com describes and illustrates two types of standard residential electrical outlets[1] and a typical residential electrical panel[2] . HomeTime.com provides a glossary of electrical terms[3] to make it easier to compare quotes or to understand what's needed in a given situation.
  • Extensive electrical work may require a building permit; check with the local planning/zoning department for specifics. All wiring must meet the National Electrical Code[4] , but local building regulations can also affect the scope and cost of a large electrical project (for example, rewiring a house).
Shopping for an electrician:
  • Evaluate the electrical work to be done. Be clear about what is needed, and why. Then ask for electrician recommendations from family, friends, co-workers or neighbors, or at the local home improvement center or hardware store. For a large or complex project, search for a member of the National Electrical Contractors Association[5] .
  • State and local licensing levels indicate the electrician's qualifications. Specifics vary by state, but someone certified and licensed as a residential wire electrician, residential appliance contractor or maintenance electrician may have less training and experience than a journeyman electrician or a master electrician -- the latter typically has the most experience and has met the most stringent level of licensing requirements. Ask to see the electrician's license and proof of insurance, and check with the state licensing board[6] to be sure the license is current.
  • Get several estimates, check references and ask about training and experience. Search for any complaints with the Better Business Bureau[7] .
  • Ask if all work will be done to code. The electrician should provide a written estimate listing the work to be done, materials used, cost, payment schedule, start date and estimated completion date. The Florida Power and Light Company provides a checklist for hiring an electrician[8] and the National Electrical Contractors Association gives guidelines[9] for choosing an electrical contractor.
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External Resources:
  1.  www.hometips.com/how-it-works/wiring-electrical-outlets.html
  2.  www.hometips.com/how-it-works/electrical-panel-circuit-breakers.html
  3.  www.hometime.com/Howto/projects/electric/elec_8.htm
  4.  www.nfpa.org/aboutthecodes/AboutTheCodes.asp?DocNum=70&cookie%5Ftest=1
  5.  www.necanet.org/find-a-contractor
  6.  www.contractors-license.org/
  7.  www.bbb.org/us/Find-Business-Reviews/
  8.  www.fpl.com/residential/power_quality/electrician_checklist.shtml
  9.  www.necaconnection.org/how/?fa=choose
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