Knob and Tube Wiring

Sep 24, 2021 | Uncategorized

There’s something so special about an old historic home. As the saying goes, “they just don’t make them like that anymore!” But with all of the charm that comes with an old home, there are upgrades that need to be made to keep your home and your family safe.

Knob and Tube wiring was commonly used in homes built before 1950. You might not know what it is, but it’s easy enough to recognize. Here’s a photo for reference.

And while it was sufficient in the early 1900’s, knob and tube wiring poses a dangerous fire risk for your home today. Here are a few reasons why.

  1. These wires were installed in your home before refrigerators, TVs and computers were common household appliances. Knob and Tube wiring simply can’t handle the amount of energy your modern devices need. These wires frequently become overloaded, which can result in an electrical fire.
  2. Do you know why we say to NEVER use a 3 prong outlet converter if your home was made with 2 prong outlets? It’s because your home was probably built before 1950 and is equipped with Knob and Tube Wiring. It lacks a ground wire, so trying to get these wires to power your 3 prong device will result in electrical shock and fires.
  3. These wires don’t have the required insulation to prevent electrical leakage. That leakage can spark a fire any time. (Read more about electrical leakage here.). The rubberized cloth found on knob and tube wiring becomes brittle, cracks and falls off, leaving wires exposed. The electrical leakage from this exposure creates both a shock and fire hazard. Plus, these wires are now subject to water leaks and animal damage, creating another fire hazard for your home.
  4. The National Electrical Code dictates the Knob and Tube wiring not be used in spaces like walls, ceilings or attics. This is because Knob and Tube wiring is designed to release heat into the air around it. If it’s in walls, ceilings or attics it can cause insulating materials to catch fire.

If you know your home was built before 1950 and you’re concerned you might need a rewiring, give us a call! We’re more than happy to come to your home and make sure it’s safe for you and your family.

knob and tube

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