How to Quickly Rewire Your Home Without an Electrician


Rewiring a home can be a daunting task, but with proper planning and safety precautions, it is possible for a homeowner to do it themselves without hiring an electrician. There are significant cost savings from DIY rewiring, but more importantly, you gain the satisfaction of accomplishing a major home improvement project. This guide will walk you step-by-step through the rewiring process, from getting permits to installing new circuits, outlets, switches, and lighting. With some basic electrical skills and the right tools, you can rewire your home safely and quickly.

Understanding Electrical Basics

Before beginning a rewiring project, you need to understand some basic electrical principles and terminology. This will help you plan the scope of work, purchase materials, and install new circuits properly.

You will need a basic understanding of these terms when planning and installing new circuits.

Getting Necessary Permits

Check with your local building department to determine if you need a permit for rewiring your home. Electrical work often requires permits to ensure it is up to code. The permit process also allows the building department to inspect your work. Expect at least two inspections - a rough-in to check the new wires before they are covered, and a final inspection when the job is complete.

The permit application will require basic information:

There is usually a fee for the permit based on the size of the job. They want to ensure any new wiring is installed safely and properly. Getting a permit is an important step, so do not skip it.

Planning the Rewiring Project

Careful planning is crucial before you start removing old wires. Determine what circuits need to be added or replaced in each room. Consider adding more outlets, switches, lighting, and dedicated appliance circuits.

Make a circuit plan indicating:

Also plan which walls, floors or ceilings will need to be opened up to run the new wires. Good planning will avoid delays and mistakes during the rewiring process.

Buying the Right Materials

Based on your circuit plan, make a list of all the wiring supplies you will need. For a whole house rewire, this includes:

Purchase quality materials from electrical suppliers. Low price big box wires and outlets often lead to problems. Also buy electrical tape, connectors, staples, and tools.

Safety Gear

Your safety is the top priority when undertaking a rewiring project. Always turn the main power off at the panel before working on any circuits. Verify power is off with a non-contact voltage tester. Have these safety items on hand:

Do not take shortcuts when it comes to electrical safety. Preventing accidents is cheap insurance.

Running the New Wires

Once permits are secured and materials purchased, it is time to start running the new circuit wires through your home.

  1. Turn off power - Shut off the main circuit breaker to cut power to all home wires.

  2. Remove old wires (if applicable) - Take out outdated, damaged wiring if remodeling existing circuits.

  3. Open access holes - Cut openings in drywall or panels where wires will pass through.

  4. Drill entry points - Make holes to route wires into boxes or through studs.

  5. Run cables - Feed new cables along planned routes between panel, boxes and devices.

  6. Staple wires - Secure cables every 4-6 feet per code requirements.

  7. Connect devices - Join wires to outlets, switches, lights via screw terminals or push-in ports.

  8. Inspect connections - Verify proper connections before covering walls or ceilings.

Take care not to damage existing plumbing or structure when running wires. Also keep wires free of kinks and within their bend radius. Leave some extra length for adjustments.

Installing the Electrical Panel

The main electrical panel is the hub that connects all your home's circuits to the utility power lines. Upgrading it may be required, especially if your home still has an outdated fuse box.

Panels should be:

Consult an electrician if the existing panel needs major changes like relocating it or upgrading the main service wire size. They can also install a new panel to meet code requirements.

Helpful Tips for DIY Rewiring

Here are some helpful tips to make your rewiring project go smoothly:

Following basic safety rules and these tips will help the rewiring job go faster and turn out right the first time.

Final Inspections and Completion

Once all new wires are run, connected, and your panels are upgraded, request a rough-in inspection before closing up walls. The inspector will check if wires are secured properly, that outlet and switch boxes are installed correctly, and applicable codes met.

Fix any issues, put covers on boxes, screw devices in place, and install light fixtures, fans, and appliances on the circuits. Now you are ready for the final inspection.

The inspector will want to:

With the final approval, your rewiring project is complete! Turn everything on and test each circuit. You've just saved a ton of money by safely rewiring your home with your own hands.


Rewiring a whole house seems intimidating, but breaks down into straightforward steps. Anyone can do it themselves with proper safety precautions, planning, and attention to details. Inspectors will ensure you meet all electrical codes too. With the right materials and tools, you can successfully rewire your home without hiring an electrician. Just take it one circuit at a time. The ability to rewire your own home is incredibly rewarding.