Heritage home rewiring is the process of changing old wiring systems installed in an old house with new, modern wiring systems. Why is this important? Residential properties built before the 1940s tend to have knob and tube wiring in use. Knob and tube wiring is an old wiring method that enjoyed widespread use in the 1880s up to the 1940s. While it is already considered as obsolete, old houses with knob and tube wiring installed still exist today and is widely viewed as a safety hazard. Buyers and sellers alike question its safety, and often opt for heritage home rewiring services that can cost an arm and a leg.
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Knob and tube wiring when properly installed is not dangerous. In fact, this wiring method is superior, in some ways, to modern wiring procedures. Generally, the concerns surrounding its safety are the roughly same concerns that haunt dated wiring practices. The materials used in the original installations of knob and tube wiring are high in quality, but decades of usage, modifications by previous owners, and other factors have worn them down. This is where heritage home rewiring comes in. Heritage home rewiring has to be completed before old houses become livable. The amount of time and money needed to invest on heritage home rewiring depends on how extensive the rewiring needs to be. Some homes have knob and tube wiring systems that are undisturbed, and don’t require much rewiring work; expect to shell out a huge amount of money for houses whose wiring systems are not so easily accessible, though.
Although most sellers will tell you that they’ve ensured that no old wiring systems are active, it’s never a bad idea to have it checked out by a qualified heritage home rewiring technician. If you plan to buy a heritage home and the knob and tube wiring is still part of the electrical circuit, it’s better to consult your insurance company first for advice on securing insurance. Majority of insurance companies will need proper documentation from a certified electrician before they insure your house. Some companies even require that any old wiring system, active or inactive, be removed and replaced altogether.