Installing new service means orchestrating multiple players

DENVER, CO — When building either a home or commercial use space on raw land, installing new electrical service is integral to the process. Word to the wise: a professional, licensed electrical contractor is a must. Choose carefully, cautions Gary Stone, owner of Allstar Electrical Service, electrical contractors in Denver, CO.

“Because of the complexities of installing new service, you’ll definitely want to have a professional electrical contractor, one who’s licensed in the city your property is located in, do the work. Installation of new service can cause disruption to public right-of-ways, even traffic,” says Stone. “Your contractor has to have more than simply electrical knowledge. He has to understand the city code, pulling permits, the requirements to secure the work area, the inspection regulations, and a multitude of other factors that can go into new service installation, depending on the location of the job.”

Service installation is something that Stone and Allstar Electrical Services have performed for decades along with electrical installation and repair for homes and commercial buildings. Besides new service installation, Allstar also offers ongoing electrical maintenance contracts for commercial buildings and multi-family complexes.

Electrical power runs from the meter and then into the main panel where it is distributed to the circuit breakers and conducted to the outlets, lights, etc., every electrical function in your home or building. New service is required when no service to an empty lot exists or in the case that existing service to a home or building is insufficient to meet user demands as required by the city building code.

The process has many steps, adds Stone, steps that must be completed in order to be the most cost-effective and approved installation. Once blueprints are drawn, the electrician and an Xcel professional will survey the construction site, determining what kind of service is required for the structure and use. Options include installing service overheard, underground or a customer station power source.

Overhead service is delivered through power lines above ground, reaching from nearby poles to their destination. Underground service is transported through wires dug deep into the ground and a customer station is an on-site transformer that provides power to the desired location where a normal pad mount cannot be accommodated. It is important not to assume that the type of service allotted to your project will correlate with existing or surrounding service in your area as it can differ due to building code restrictions and availability.

Prior to installation of an electrical service in a residential area, a professional electrician will make an assessment of the property including address of the residence, tract/lot number, square footage of the building, plot and elevation plans, service voltage and load schedule requirements (size of air conditioners, heat pumps, water heaters and other major load information available). Those factors are considered in determining what kind of service is required.

For a commercial, light industrial or large residential installation, similar information is needed such as the job address, type of project, plot plans, and square footage of building. In addition, they will also need the preferred meter location, elevation or building profile plans, preferred transformer vault and or pad location and location of any existing overhead utilities in the vicinity of the building. Because the size of the job is much larger than a residential installation, additional information is needed and some extra time for installation is necessary.

Once service installation is finished and operational, the work must be inspected by the building department before the electrical systems are used on a regular basis. If the inspector determines changes to the installation must be made in order to pass inspection, then a second inspection is scheduled once the corrections are made. If the inspector finds nothing needs correction and signs off on the work done, all systems are go. And you’ve got power.

“While the term basic service would imply that the process is simplistic, it’s not,” adds Stone. “Done right, it’s the most necessary function of your home or building. Done improperly, there are huge ramifications. The project will be delayed and costs will go up. Why not start with the right people to do the right job, vs. dealing with someone who doesn’t have the training and requirements to know the difference.”

Reach Allstar Electrical Service by calling 303-399-7420 or visit them on the web at

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