How to Rewire Your Home Without Dying - A Guide for Novices

Rewiring a home can seem daunting, but with proper planning and safety precautions, even a novice can successfully rewire their house. Here is a step-by-step guide to walk you through the process safely.

Know When Rewiring is Necessary

There are a few instances when rewiring your home is necessary:

If any of these conditions apply to your home, a rewire is likely worthwhile to gain safety and updated electrical capacity.

Develop a Rewiring Plan

Careful planning makes a rewire go smoothly and avoids surprises mid-project.

Gear Up with Safety Equipment

Electrical work carries risks like shocks, arc flashes, and electrocution hazards. Protect yourself with:

Step-by-Step Rewiring Process

With proper planning and safety gear, you can methodically work through the rewiring process:

1. Turn Off Power

Turn off the main breaker and all individual circuit breakers. Verify power is off with a contactless voltage tester.

2. Remove Old Wiring

Take down the existing wires from outlets, switches and junction boxes carefully. Save wire nuts and electrical boxes for reuse if in good condition.

3. Run New Wires

Route new cables between boxes and the panel following your wiring plan. Staple cables every 4-5 feet for support. Use wire nuts to join wires in boxes.

4. Connect Devices

Connect switches, outlets, lights, appliances and equipment ground wires according to code and labeling system.

5. Turn Power Back On

Energize the main breaker first, then switch other breakers on one at a time. Test outlets and lights on each circuit.

6. Wrap Up

Install switch, outlet and junction box covers. Verify grounding and polarity of outlets. Complete drywall repairs. Have an inspector approve the job before covering all hidden wiring.

Final Tips

Rewiring a house is time consuming but worthwhile. Stay safe by avoiding shortcuts and using extreme caution when working with live power lines. Turn to an electrician if you get stuck or overwhelmed. With patience and care, you can gain updated electrical capacity without costs of hiring a professional.