4 Electrical Upgrades Your Garage May Need When You Convert It To A Workshop

If you're lucky enough to have an extra-large garage and you don't need all that space for parking your cars, you might consider turning part of the garage into a workshop. If you've always wanted to take up woodworking, you could make a few changes to the garage and have ample room for all your supplies and enough electricity to run them.

Making sure you have enough electricity is a primary concern, so bring in an electrical contractor before you get too far along in your plans. Here are some electrical upgrades your garage could need.

1. Adding Grounded GFCI Outlets

If your home is old, the outlets in the garage may not have GFCI protection. They may not even be grounded. Before you can operate power tools or saws, you need the right kind of outlets.

Local electrical codes usually require GFCI outlets in the garage to protect individuals from shock, so when electrical upgrades are done, the electrician should put in GFCI protection and make sure the electricity is grounded. This keeps you protected from shock, and your equipment will be protected from electrical damage.

2. Add A Subpanel To The Garage

Your garage may not have very many circuits since it's not intended to do much other than house cars. The electrical contractor will probably have to add additional circuits so you can use your tools without tripping a breaker.

You may even want the contractor to install a subpanel in the garage so you can flip a breaker back on in the garage rather than having to walk out to the main panel.

3. Put In New Outlets

In addition to upgrading the outlets that are already present, you may want additional outlets added. Let the electrical contractor know the type of equipment you plan to operate so the new outlets can be placed in the most ideal locations.

You probably won't want all the new outlets on the same circuit, so your contractor can come up with an electrical plan that lays out the number and location of each outlet and the circuits that feed power to them.

4. Upgrade Your Main Panel

If you have a newer home, your main electrical panel should have enough power for a home workshop. If your home is several decades old, you might need a panel upgrade.

Upgrading the panel benefits your entire house, so it's worth it even if you don't have a workshop, but it could be essential if you'll be operating power tools that require large power draws when starting up and running for long periods.