How to Rewire Your Home with Obsolete Knob and Tube Wiring

I have an older home built in the 1920s that still has the original knob and tube wiring. This type of electrical wiring was common in homes built in the early 1900s but is now considered obsolete and even dangerous. As the homeowner, I need to fully rewire my house to make it safer and up to code. Here is an in-depth guide on how I plan to rewire my home to replace the outdated knob and tube wiring.

Understanding Knob and Tube Wiring

Knob and tube wiring consists of single black rubber insulated wires run through ceramic knobs, with air gaps between the wires. It was the standard wiring method in North America from about 1880 to the 1930s.

Some key facts about knob and tube wiring:

The lack of a ground wire and the cloth insulation makes knob and tube wiring a fire hazard by modern electrical standards. The wiring degrades over time, increasing the risk of arcing and ignition within wood framing.

Dangers of Knob and Tube Wiring

There are several dangers associated with obsolete knob and tube wiring:

In fact, many homeowners insurance companies will not insure a home with knob and tube wiring due to the risk. Replacing the outdated wiring makes the home significantly safer.

Planning the Rewiring Project

Rewiring my entire home is a big project that requires planning and preparation. Here are the key steps I will take:

Safely Removing Knob and Tube Wiring

Once I have a rewiring plan in place, I can start the process of removing the old knob and tube wiring. This involves:

Rerouting and Installing New Wiring

Once the knob and tube wiring is removed, I can start routing the new wiring:

Tips for DIYing Some of the Rewiring

While I will hire an electrician to oversee the major rewiring work, there are some parts of the project I can do myself as a homeowner to save on labor costs:

By doing thishands-on work under the supervision of the electrical contractor, I can reduce the total rewiring costs by 15-25%.

Final Checks and Completing the Project

Once the new wiring is installed throughout my home, there are a few final steps to wrap up the rewiring project:

While rewiring an entire house is a major undertaking, it is absolutely necessary in homes with original knob and tube wiring to prevent fires and make the home safe. Following this comprehensive guide will allow me to successfully rewire my home.