For homes built before the 1950s, wiring knob replacement in Media, PA, can be an important electrical safety improvement. State of the art at the time, this system of stringing rubber-insulated wiring along a series of ceramic knobs and tubes is long outdated. Aging materials and updated wiring standards make tube replacement with plastic-jacketed wiring a wise choice.
In addition, updating the two wires used earlier to today’s three-wire system, including a ground wire, helps avoid shocks and electrical fires. While this system can look elegant running through your attic and walls, having your power run through it presents risks and limitations.
If you have knob and tube wiring in your home, here’s why you need to upgrade your electrical:
Degradation: Knob and tube wire will eventually break down. If your home has seen multiple homeowners, handymen and contractors, the mechanical abuse and inevitable wear and tear from decades of service will render a knob and tube system unsafe. Symptoms of old knob and tube electrical systems include cracked or broken tubes, sagging or frayed wires and broken sheathing that exposes live wires.
Dangerous Combos: Dream Team Home Services has inspected many homes that have been wired with old knob and tube and modern wiring. This is extremely dangerous and against the electrical code. Think of it this way, you’re now using different materials that are contracting and expanding at different rates. If left in the wrong hands, altering your knob and tube system can lead to a fire hazard.
Electrical Demand: With the rise of technology there is a higher electrical demand. Homeowners with knob and tube often overuse and abuse extension cords and power bars. There’s simply not enough power for modern-day living.
Poor Connections: Problems with knob and tube wire can result from amateurish connections made after original installation.
Weakness: The rubber insulation on knob and tube can become brittle; this usually happens in high heat areas like receptacles, fixtures and switches.
Old Technology: Homes with knob and tube wiring will likely have two-prong receptacles. Since there is no ground wire, there is an increased chance of shock and injury, especially around water.
60 Amp Service: Knob-and-tube uses a 60 amp service, whereas today it is recommended that homeowners use a 100 amp service/ breaker panel.
Exposed Wires in Attics
Your older home has that character and charm that newer homes can’t live up to. That’s why it’s important to protect your investment from electrical hazards. There’s really nothing worse than fighting a fire that could have been prevented. Luckily there are ways to preserve your beautiful home without having to tear down your walls.
Simple procedures like upgrading your 60 amp fusible service to at least a 100 amp service, installing proper grounding, replacing old underground switches and receptacles with approved devices, or an electrical panel replacement to ensure your home meets today’s electrical demands – are all things we can do to make sure you and your loved ones are safe.
If you have an older home and are unsure if you have knob and tube in your older home check the attic and basement to see if you can find any. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to look through the walls to see if any of this type of wiring is hidden underneath. The only person who can detect these hazards behind your walls is a certified and trained electrician.
"I had a very pleasant experience with Ralph, Shawn, and Nick. They were all very knowledgeable in their areas of work, were able to figure out the problem almost immediately, and were able to fix it within a few hours. Not only were they excellent technicians, but they were very pleasant to have in the home. Very respectful and approachable. Overall, I am a very satisfied customer."
Having an electrical team with decades of experience in knob replacement and modern wiring can ease the transition. They’ll be using three-wire, plastic jacketed standard wiring meeting today’s electrical code to make the change. Updated wiring also allows the implementation of higher current capacity for your home, from the 60 amp limited service with knob and tube to 100 amps or more. You may even find that tube and knob replacement comes as part of a general electrical upgrade to your home for appliances, HVAC, tankless hot water, and even EV charging.
Looking behind the scenes in homes using this original wiring technology, you’ll notice that the rubber insulation used on the wires is cracking, with over 50 years in service. That presents a risk of arcing and short circuits that needs to be removed, and knob replacement provides a straightforward swap and upgrade. You might also want to add more circuits while your electrical team performs the upgrade, adding outlets in each room as well. Some homes have partial upgrades, which can present risks while giving the impression that you have modern wiring. It’s better to make a clean sweep with fresh circuits.
When is it time for knob and tube replacement?
Rubber insulation is degrading
Partial upgrade already performed
Home electrical capacity upgrades
Two-prong receptacles lack grounding
Brittle wiring from heat fatigue
Amateur modifications from the past
Exposed wires in attics and walls from aging knob and tube wiring can present shock and fire hazards directly. You might encounter this hazard when putting in insulation, storing items in the attic, or doing other routine activities. Updating to wiring compliant with modern electrical codes lets you enjoy your home without these concerns. If you have reason to call for an emergency electrician, they’ll start with standard wiring, a big advantage.
Our passion is home services at Dream Team Home Services, including electrical care for homes of all ages and histories. We love to see a legacy of knob and tube wiring in Media homes from the early 20th century, but for our customers’ sake, we’re also glad to make the change to modern wiring. Our licensed, experienced electricians have been performing knob and tube replacement work for over 20 years. We have a BBB A+ rating and strive to exceed our customers’ expectations with the quality of our work and the products we install. Our company is well-known in the business community as well as with local homeowners who have posted so many 5-star reviews. Locally owned and operated, our 100% satisfaction guarantee lets you know that we want your business long-term. We work hard to achieve that, and our owner stands behind that promise personally!
Is it time for experienced knob and tube replacement in Media? Call Dream Team Home Services today to get it done properly.