Question about Federal Pacific

I recently came across a Federal Pacific Stab-Lok panel while doing a mock inspection. The lack of a completed legend was the only issue I found with the panel other than the fact that it is what it is. I have researched the subject extensively and know I should bring it to the clients attention and recommend further evaluation by a licensed electrician. My question is where to state it in my summary page? Some would say safety hazard, but it probably isn’t anymore unsafe than other panels from that era being that it is basically in great shape otherwise. I was thinking more along the lines of improvement items being that I am recommending further evaluation.

I know this is a touchy subject, but I want to make sure I do not blow it out of proportion, but still cover my *****. Thanks in advance.

Not an inspector, but even if in pristine shape the panel still has the same mounting to the bus as any other Stab-Lok panel.

How do you know it is “in great shape” unless you removed breakers?

You are right. I do not know what kind of condition it is truly in. I would never let it go based on what it is. I also would never put anything like “great shape” in my report. I guess I tried to word the question based on the responses I found in the search I did on this subject on this forum. I understand why they need to be replaced.

New question: If you come across a Federal Pacific stab-lok panel, does it go in the safety hazard section or the improvement section of the summary? It seemed to me like it could go either way or both.

This is one of those no-win deals. I dealt with it as a Realtor and we will be dealing with it until the last Stab-lok panel is replaced.

It’s easy to find all kinds of info trashing Federal Pacific panels, and a bit harder to find the actual stats. If an inspector does not call them out, they open themselves up to liability. If they do, they can be accused of being alarmist. I call them out from an abundance of caution.

I agree , i give both sides of the view and recommend service because of age of the panel . BTW any old panel get the recommend service also . Service meaning manufactures recommendations .

What reporting software do you use? I use HIP and I have a lot of comments that I have in Blue that I import to the summary page by tagging into the Red comments box. It stays Blue in the summary and alerts my clients to a “concern” or “maintenance” issue.

I have a standard “FP panels are old but not necessarily defective blah blah blah” disclaimer that is in Blue but Red is reserved for an actual safety hazard, not just because it’s an old Stab-lok.

In the Denver area there are probably 200,000 FP panels in service and these homes aren’t bursting into flames every day. But, like any other panel, they get called out for being corroded, wrong gauge wires, loose connections, improper bonding etc…

I am using Inspectit. That was kind of what I meant in the original post. I understand why they need to be brought to attention, and I always will. It didn’t seem like a safety hazard unless there were issues that called for it. Like it was said before, I do not want to be an alarmist, but I need to cover my butt and educate the client on the matter. Thanks for all the insight.

I color code items as well to bring certain things more attention. Kind of a “look at me” idea.

Thanks again.