Electrical upgrades for Adelaide businesses: An electrician’s advice

As electricians who have worked with countless businesses across Adelaide over the past two decades, we’ve seen firsthand how important it is to have an electrical system that can handle modern operational demands. Whether you run a retail shop, restaurant, office, warehouse or other commercial facility, outdated or inadequate electrical infrastructure can severely impact productivity, create safety hazards, and hinder future growth opportunities. If you’re experiencing issues like flickering lights, frequent circuit breaker trips, or lack of capacity for new equipment, it’s likely time for an electrical upgrade.

Here is our professional advice as an experienced electrician on when and how to upgrade your Adelaide business’s electrical system:

Signs you need an electrical upgrade

  • Recurring problems like dimming lights, circuit breakers tripping, or blown fuses
  • Inability to run new machinery, computers or other equipment due to lack of power
  • Excessive reliance on extension cords and multi-outlet power boards
  • Shocks or tingling sensations from outlets or switches
  • An ageing electrical panel or components over 25-30 years old
  • Plans for renovation, expansion, or change of business operations
  • Local council or electrical authority flagging non-compliance issues

The upgrade process 

If any of those red flags apply, the first step is to have a licensed electrician conduct a comprehensive electrical system audit and assessment. This will identify any glaring safety violations as well as areas that are inadequate or at maximum capacity. With those findings, your electrician can make recommendations on:

  1. Service entrance & main panel – Adelaide businesses typically need to upgrade to a commercial/industrial rated electrical service of 200-800+ amps with a new distribution panel to handle increased power loads.
  2. Branch wiring & circuits – Additional branch circuit wiring with dedicated lines for heavy equipment, HVAC systems, and high receptacle counts. May involve installing all new wiring runs.
  3. Outlets & lighting – More outlets on dedicated circuits, modern energy efficient LED lighting, adding lighting controls and occupancy sensors.
  4. Grounding & surge protection – Properly grounding the system, external lightning protection to safeguard equipment.
  5. Equipment connections – Hardwiring equipment for machinery, coolers, ovens etc instead of plugging into standard outlets.
  6. Future-proofing – Planning for pending operational changes, expansion needs, EV charging, backup power sources and more.

The specific upgrades required depend on the electrical audit findings and your goals for the business. Electricians will provide detailed proposals outlining the scope of work and project costs.

Hiring an experienced electrical contractor 

When making a major investment into your business’s electrical infrastructure, you want to ensure the job is done right by a qualified, licensed electrical contractor. Look for an established firm with deep experience in commercial and industrial electrical projects, quality product sourcing, and a strong safety record.

We also recommend choosing an electrician that takes a consultative approach – listening to your needs, outlining all options, offering professional recommendations, and helping plan for future growth considerations. They should also adhere to all relevant Australian standards and local council permit requirements.

The benefits of upgrading 

While an electrical upgrade involves upfront costs, it provides tremendous long-term payoffs for your business:

  • Safety – Eliminating fire risks, shocks, and hazards to protect your property and people.
  • Capacity – Ability to install new equipment, machinery, technology as needed.
  • Efficiency – Save on energy costs with modern lighting and energy management systems.
  • Reliability – Minimise disruptive outages and process interruptions.
  • Compliance – Ensure your facility meets all electrical codes and requirements.
  • Growth – Leave ample capacity and infrastructure for future expansion.
  • Asset Value – An upgraded electrical system increases the value of your property/facility.

As electricians, we’ve seen the dangers of deteriorating, outdated and overloaded electrical systems in too many commercial buildings. We’ve also seen the risks it puts on staff, customers, and operations. Investing in a proper electrical upgrade brings you into the modern age with a safe, efficient, and future-ready system tailored to your business’s power needs.

Conclusion

Don’t wait until you face a catastrophic incident or are forced to by the local authorities. Be proactive about your business’s electrical system – have it professionally assessed and plan an upgrade managed by an experienced, reputable electrical contractor. It’s an investment that pays dividends long into the future.

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