Openings in Main Electrical Panel Cover

Openings in a main electrical panel cover usually expose energized metal parts or wires inside the panel to potential contact. So, if someone sticks their finger into one of these openings they may get shocked, or worse, killed.

Opening in electrical front cover exposes hot bus bar to being touched.
Opening In panel cover with hot bus bar behind. Potential danger.

These openings are usually created when a small ‘knock-out’ piece is removed so that a breaker can be installed. But then the breaker is never installed at that location or one is subsequently removed.

Fixing one of these openings is usually cheap and easy. Panel manufacturers have planned for this situation and have small plastic plates (goof plates I call them) that can be installed to close these openings. Be sure to note the panel manufacturer, and take a picture, before you head to the hardware store. If you can’t find one of these small plates you can simply install a breaker at that location and then just don’t attach a wire to the breaker.

If you’re thinking that duct tape is a good alternative, think again. Duct tape usually fails over time. You want a permanent solution.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *