Do you have an older home that was built with cloth covered wire? You can consult with our local Mesa AZ electricians free of charge about repairing and upgrading your old electrical wiring. Voted best electricians Mesa AZ, our in-office electrician has over 30 years of experience with old house wires. He will answer all of your questions and provide you with the information you’re looking for. Our local Mesa electricians are able to take your call about old wiring repairs and upgrades between 8:00 AM until 5:00 PM, Monday thru Friday.
Does the residential wiring in this picture look like your household wiring? If your home was built before 1950 it is very possible that cloth covered wire was used and here is what you need to be aware of and why.
Many power systems installed prior to 1950 were built with cloth covered electrical wire. It was 1 of 2 popular methods of residential wiring in its time. The other basic electrical wiring system of this era was a bare electrical house wiring system commonly known as knob and tube. While cloth covered wiring was safer than knob and tube and looks very similar to today’s modern household wiring, it can pose increased shock and fire hazards due to its frail insulation and inadequate grounding.
Over time the insulation on cloth covered electrical wiring becomes brittle, cracks and in many cases literally falls of the wire. Often times a professional electrician changing a basic switch or receptacle in an older cloth covered system will experience large pieces of insulation crumbling off the wire due to its frail nature.
When this happens to wires with cloth covered insulation it’s simple to repair by stripping a larger piece of new thermal plastic insulated wire and sliding the new insulation over the old wire. This new insulation should be securely taped to the old wire and remaining insulation.
But what about the rest of the old wires that cannot be seen or go unnoticed? This is where the danger lies. Bare wiring offers you no protection from shocks and anyone who accidentally touches it can become electrocuted. Additionally, short circuiting and sparking can occur starting a fire when old house wiring loses its insulation.
Dolce Electric Co has scheduled an in-office electrician Mesa AZ homeowners can consult with free of charge Monday thru Friday, during normal business hours. Having over 30 years of experience, he will answer all of your questions about your residential wiring and provide you with the solutions you’re looking for. Dolce Electric Co has been voted the best electricians in Mesa AZ and would be proud to earn your vote too. Call today during office hours; you’ll be happy you did!
Until the early 1960’s most home power systems did not include a grounding wire. This lack of grounding in old wiring systems was changed in 1962 when amendments to the electric code mandated equipment grounding for all electrical systems. A basic improvement to the old power distribution systems but the grounding conductor was usually undersized and still did not provide ample protection. In 1969 the code was revamped again and undersized grounding was no longer permitted in both commercial and residential electrical wiring systems.
Why is grounding important?
The grounding wire is the single most important wire in your house’s system. It has several purposes but its main purpose is to protect you, your family and pets from electrocution should an appliance or electronic device malfunction by shutting down the circuit breaker connected to your wiring. Undersized grounding wires were allowed until 1969 when it was realized that they do not have the capacity to effectively “trip” the circuit breaker. Today’s household wiring codes mandate that the grounding wire is the same size as the power wires where your switches and outlets are installed.
Another vital job the grounding wire does is it dissipates small voltage charges that build up in the insulation of your household wires. Much like a static shock, these charges can do damage to anything with electronic components including computers, televisions, sound systems, refrigerators, microwaves and more.
Won’t my surge suppressor handle that?
Surge protectors require a grounding wire to work properly. They need a route (other than through your computer) to send those spikes and surges into the earth and away from your electronics. If your power system has no ground wire and you plug in a local point of use surge suppressor, all you have are more places to plug in without protection. See our page about whole house surge protection.
Update and Get Safe
Updating your existing cloth covered wires will provide you and your family with additional fire safety protection, increased protection against electrocution and the necessary grounding to properly protect your electronic devices and appliances. If your home was built before 1950 and your wires have not been updated, it is very possible that the original wires that were installed were cloth covered and are still in use.
Dolce Electric Co offers an in-office electrician in Mesa AZ that you can consult with free of charge Monday thru Friday, from 8:00 AM until 5:00 PM. He will answer all of your questions and provide you with the information you are looking for.