Over the years standards for building homes have improved to offer more safety and reliability. Unfortunately, there are still homes out there with old electrical wiring in them that could cause electrical hazards. These old wiring types (knob and tub wiring) should be replaced as they can result in extensive damage to your home over time if not properly taken care of. Know what to look for in your home and upgrade your wiring.
Signs of Old Electrical Wiring
There are several common signs that can indicate your home’s wiring may be old and out-dated. If you notice these issues occurring in your home, it may be time to contact an electrician and have a home electrical inspection. Common signs are:
- Breakers & Fuses Tripping Regularly – If you find that your breakers are often shutting off and you are losing power to areas of your home, it is possible that your circuits are overloaded and there are surges being caused. Your fuses could be out of date and cannot handle the new load be applied to them.
- Dimming & Flickering Lights – If your lights are flickering or become dim when over devices are turned on it could be an indication that the circuit is at its capacity and is having trouble with the load.
- Smell of Burning – If you can smell burning in your home but cannot identify the source, it is possible that it is coming from behind the walls. Old wires could be shorting out, becoming hot, and melting. This is dangerous if surrounding material becomes hot and catches fire.
- Shocks from Outlets & Switches – If you are constantly getting shocks from your light switches or noticing shocks when plugging in electronic devices, this could be another sign that the circuit is shorting out.
Knob & Tube Wiring
Knob and wiring tubing can be found in homes built around 50 years ago. If properly maintained, knob and wire tubing can be safely used in your home. But often over the years the wiring can begin to crack and break down leading to exposed wires. Because of the age of the wiring it often will not reach current code and can prevent your home from being insured in some cases. Overtime knob and wire tubing can heat up and requires sufficient air space around the wiring. Any contact with insulation or wood can result in a fire.
Home Electrical Wire Upgrades
In some cases you could experience some of the issues listed above and you don’t have knob and wire tubing. In many cases, when a home was originally built it was brought up to correct standards and has potential hazards all over. If you are unsure of the status of your home’s electrical wiring or you are experiencing some of the signs listed above, we highly recommend that you have you’re home inspected. An electrical inspection can catch potential hazards and also lead to better electrical efficiency.