Rewiring a home can be a daunting task, but with proper precautions it can be done safely. While rewiring homes yourself was more common in the late 19th century, today it requires following modern electrical codes and safety practices. This article will provide some background on rewiring homes in the 1890s along with tips for when to hire a professional electrician versus DIY electrical work.

Rewiring Homes in the 1890s

In the late 1800s and early 1900s, electricity was just being introduced into homes. At that time, there were no uniform electrical codes and home electrical systems were extremely basic by today's standards. Homeowners often did their own rewiring using cloth-insulated copper wiring and very simple fuse boxes. Safety precautions were more lax and electrocutions more common.

While rewiring homes yourself was common then, today electrical systems are vastly more complex. Always follow modern safety codes and best practices when doing any electrical work.

Evaluating Your Electrical System

Before undertaking any electrical project, carefully evaluate the existing wiring and electrical panel in your home. Factors to consider include:

When to Call An Electrician

While minor electrical projects like installing new light fixtures may be DIY-friendly, larger jobs like rewiring should only be done by licensed electricians. Specific projects where professionals should be called include:

Trying to cut costs by doing major electrical work yourself can risk fire, shock, and electrocution if wires are installed incorrectly. Hire a trusted local electrician if your home needs extensive rewiring.

DIY Electrical Safety Tips

For minor electrical jobs, safety should be your top priority. Follow these tips when doing your own electrical work:

By knowing your limits and following safety procedures, you can take care of basic electrical projects yourself. But major rewiring jobs should always be left to the professionals. Research local electricians and get quotes if your home's electrical system needs an overhaul.


Rewiring homes without proper training can easily lead to lethal accidents. While rewiring projects yourself was more common in the 1890s, modern electrical systems require certified electricians to install wires up to today's more stringent codes. Carefully consider all electrical work and call in an expert for large jobs. With the right safety precautions, even DIY-ers can safely take care of minor electrical fixes. Just use extreme care when dealing with such a potentially dangerous system.