A circuit breaker is a safety device. It is an electrical switch. The switch is designed to protect an electrical circuit against damage that can be caused by excess current or overload of a short circuit.
What Does It Do?
Its primary function is to stop the flow of a current after a detected fault. A circuit breaker can be either manually or automatically reset after it has disrupted a current. Circuit breakers are similar to fuses in that both can shut off power. This helps prevent fires and keeps homes and buildings safer.
How Much Does a Circuit Breaker Cost?
Circuit breakers can be purchased for $50 to $200. However, the cost varies depending on the size, number of circuits and several other factors. Hiring an electrician will cost you extra for the labour. Replacing an entire switchboard will cost approximately $400 to $2,500, though this price does not include installation fees from an electrician.
Factors Impacting the Cost of a Circuit Breaker
Type of circuit breaker
The type of circuit breaker chosen will a dramatic impact on the price. Various circuit breakers serve various purposes and thus have varying costs.
The price to install a circuit breaker depends on the amp size. For 15-30 amp breakers, expect to pay at least $120. For breakers that have up to 200 amps, expect to spend as much as $300.
Replacing one breaker is typically a job that requires about one hour of labour costs. An electrician will charge a fee of $60 to $220 per hour for installation. Some electricians also charge additional service fees.
Price Estimates for Different Types of Circuit Breakers
Miniature Circuit Breaker
Miniature circuit breakers can be purchased inexpensively. A miniature circuit breaker price can vary between $20 and $100.
Moulded Case Circuit Breaker
A moulded case circuit breakers is an electrical protection device used when load currents exceed their capabilities. The moulded case circuit breaker can be used to manage currents larger than those capable of being handled by miniature circuit breakers. The moulded case circuit breaker price range is $50 to $350.
Medium Voltage Circuit Breaker
A medium voltage circuit breaker is a flexible and cost-effective system that operates on voltage levels towards 400 volts to 16kV. There are two types of medium voltage circuit breakers, including:
Vacuum circuit breakers – A vacuum circuit breaker price will vary depending on the product specifications.
Air circuit breakers – An air circuit breaker price will also vary depending on product specifications such as voltage. Prices can go from hundreds of dollars to thousands or even tens of thousands of dollars.
How to Hire an Electrician
How to Create an Accurate Estimate
Ask if the electrician charges a service fee in addition to labour costs.
Determine how many hours of labour you need. For instance, a project requiring only 1-2 breakers will cost less than remodelling or rewiring an entire residence.
Shop around and compare prices.
Licencing and Qualifications
New South Wales
Must complete an application form.
Must submit original copies of TAFE transcript or else provide a transcript from another registered training organisation.
Original copy of TAFE certificate or a certificate from another training organisation.
Must submit the Referee’s Statement of Electrical Work form as completed by licensed supervisors.
Official ID card.
How to Save Money Hiring an Electrician
Choose someone with years of experience. (This may cost a little more, but it may be worth it in the long run).
Choose an electrician who has insurance.
Request quotes from several electricians to compare prices.
Electricians should be licensed in Australia, so request a compliance certificate.
How Much Does It Cost to Replace a Fuse Box with Circuit Breakers?
Expect to pay $1,500 to $2,000 to convert a fuse box into a circuit breaker.
* The cost data is based on Oneflare and third-party sources