Knob-and-tube wiring is a type of wiring used in America from 1880 to the late 1940s. Recognizable by its white, ceramic knobs shaped like spools, some older homes still use it to this day. However, this type of wiring is very dangerous compared to modern wiring and can pose several different dangers. At Streamline Services, we can tell you why this old wiring is dangerous and provide wiring replacement services.
Here are five dangers that should have you switching away from knob-and-tube wiring:
Improper DIY modifications
Most of the unsafe DIY modifications we’ve seen are done with knob-and-tube wiring. One reason for this is because it’s very easy to access it for splicing jobs. Oftentimes, people will forgo electrical tape for masking or Scotch tape in their DIY connections. Even worse, these wires are nowhere near capable of dealing with the fuses DIY rookies use with them. This mistake generally results in the wires overloading and potentially causing electrical fires.
In general knob-and-tube wiring can be 70 to 130 years old. Even if it seems like it’s working fine, it doesn’t have the capacity modern homeowners need. Trying to use modern electronics means there’s a high chance of overload and electrical fire. Also, it’s more prone to damage than normal wiring, representing yet another fire risk to homeowners.
No grounding wires
Because it’s so old, knob-and-tube wiring is not at all compatible with modern 3-plug appliances. Even if you do plug in something with that third grounding plug, it won’t be grounded. This means anything that you plug in is more liable to take damage from voltage fluctuations and surges. As well as possibly causing shocks, this is yet another fire hazard.
Can’t handle moisture
As well as not having grounding, knob-and-tube wiring has no rating to handle moisture. All those other problems it has? Even more dangerous when used anywhere that often gets moisture such as kitchens, bathrooms, and outside.
Easy to overlook
These days, knob-and-tube wiring will often get buried in insulation. This pushes it into contact with building materials and other clutter. Since knob-and-tube wiring releases heat freely into the air, this is yet another fire hazard it can cause. Also, this insulation issue is an insurance violation. If you mash your insulation and old wires together, you likely won’t be able to get insurance. The National Electric Code (NEC) states that knob-and-tube wiring must stay away from insulation.
Why call Streamline Services to change out my old wiring?
Streamline Services is a fourth-generation family-owned plumbing company that began in the early 1920s. We have a passion for what we do and our owner Bob Sweet has been in the trade business for a very long time. Here at Streamline, we strive to bring you happiness for you and your home. The relationships we cultivate and develop amongst ourselves and with customers is something we pride ourselves with every day.
We are constantly educating ourselves to communicate with clients and customers on their home and don’t talk at you at a technical level when solving your problems. Rather, we enjoy solving problems for you and talk to you as a person. Call us today to ensure your home’s wiring is up-to-date!