Knob and Tube Wiring Systems
Knob and tube wiring was most commonly installed in homes between 1880 and 1935. This system utilizes wire that is wrapped around and drawn through a series of ceramic tubes. If you think you might have knob and tube wiring, or your home was built during this time period, feel free to call us for a free consultation.
If you would like to take a look yourself, just compare what you see in your attic or crawl space to the picture on this page.
We can say with near certainty that any knob and tube wiring system still in use today is no longer safe. It is our recommendation that you have a full home rewiring completed to help ensure the safety of your home. Replacing a knob and tube system will help keep your family safe from shocks and fire, as well as reduce your insurance rates and make your home easier to sell. Furthermore, this is a great opportunity to make sure that your electrical system is powerful enough to handle your every day appliances. Another concern with knob and tube wiring systems is that they are not grounded.
Safety of Knob and Tube
Knob and tube wiring systems present very serious fire dangers. Plus, since these systems are not grounded, you are at risk for electrical shock in the event of a malfunction in one of your devices. Connecting appliances to ungrounded systems can also cause continuous damage over time due to electrical buildup.
Because they are unsafe, many insurance companies will not provide fire insurance to homes with knob and tube. It can also be very difficult to find a mortgage lender willing to offer a loan on these homes.
If you want us to help you find out if your home has knob and tube, please call us today.
Knob and Tube Systems Provide Insufficient Power
Knob and Tube wiring systems were installed many years before people had the amount of electrical devices that we had today. Because of this, they were not designed to handle the load typical of your standard modern household. This typically results in blown fuses and tripped circuit breakers.
To try and combat this, some homeowners will oversize their fuses or breakers. Although this may cause it to blow less often, it is very dangerous because the extra electrical current can cause overloading an overheating.
Insulation and Fire Hazard
Whenever insulation is blown or laid over knob and tube wiring, it places the entire home at serious risk for fire. If a home or other building has had insulation installed in their attics over knob and tube, this can be very serious.
Ungrounded Wiring Systems
Knob and Tube wiring systems were never grounded. This can greatly increase your risk of electrical shock, as well as low-level damage to your electronics over time. This type of damage will silently shorten the life of all of your valuable electronics such as microwaves, televisions, computers and more.
By far the greatest danger of an ungrounded knob and tube wiring system is electrical shock. Whenever a device malfunctions, it could lead to an electrical shock that could injure or even kill the person who is shocked.
Can I sell or Insure a Home With Knob and Tube?
While you may be able to do these things, it can be very difficult to find insurers and lenders for homes with knob and tube. In general, you will need to have the home inspected by a licensed electrician in order to get insurance. Many insurance companies will just refuse coverage to these homes in al cases. The difficulty of finding a mortgage lender who will offer a loan on a knob and tube home can also make selling your home very hard.
What Do I Do If My Home Has Knob and Tube?
You should start by having an electrician perform a safety inspection of your electrical system. Give us a call at any time to schedule a Free Home Safety Inspection or to ask us any questions about your electrical system.