Much of our country’s power grid is obsolete, and the electrical wiring inside many American homes is also outdated. Their electrical systems are stretched beyond their limits, and eventually they can no longer adequately provide power to an ever-growing number of devices and appliances. Older houses have circuits that were never intended to cope with modern electrical demands, which can be a safety hazard.
Although not as common as circuit breaker panels, older fuse boxes can still function today. However, if fuses with higher amperages are used with wiring unable to handle those levels, they can cause wires to overheat, causing damage to their protective insulation which may lead to a fire. If this happens, the entire circuit will have to be rewired to ensure safety.
Inspections for Older Homes
Wiring problems are the main causes of fire or electrocution hazards. If you’re in the real estate market and fall in love with an older home, get a licensed electrician to inspect its electrical system before buying. The results may affect how much you’ll offer. The electrician will search for wear and tear, corrosion, and for any indication the current owner did anything to compromise safety. An inspection should also be performed if your older house has never had one, and follow-ups should be done every five years.
Old Homes Grandfathered
Although electrical codes are updated as time passes, wiring installed under previous codes are “grandfathered” and can stay as they are, assuming they were installed properly at the time. New electrical codes will typically only be enforced in homes that are being remodeled.
Below are questions to consider for your home’s electric wiring upgrade:
1) How old is your home, and what type of wiring is in use?
2) Is the electrical system sufficient for your needs?
3) Will your electrical consumption increase in the near future?
4) Are there symptoms indicating electrical fire hazards?
5) Does your home insurance provide discounts for wiring upgrades?
6) Should structured wiring be installed?
Electrical Services You Can Trust
Founded in 1991, Meyer Electrical Services provides home and commercial electrical services in Maryland, Virginia, and D.C., where we are licensed and insured. Based in Bethesda, our team proudly serves all of Montgomery County. Receive a free consultation for custom electrical work today by calling (301) 941-1400.