What Is Knob And Tube Electrical Wiring?

If you are a fan of those home improvement shows on TV, you may have heard the term “knob and tube wiring” used in conjunction with the electrical wiring of a home. If you have, you know that it is never good news. Finding knob and tube wiring hiding within the walls of a home usually means that it is time to call in the electricians.

In most cases, knob and tube wiring, which is usually found in older homes, needs to be replaced with a modern system of wiring and an electrical panel change, so it is not a do-it-yourself project.

According to the National Association of Realtors, knob and tube wiring was “widespread in residences built from the 1880s to the 1930s.” At the time, K&T as it is sometimes referred to, was the standard in electrical wiring. Today, however, as the National Association of Realtors (NAR) tells us, knob and tube wiring “is often considered a hazard.”

Why do The Property Brothers and other celebrity rehabbers dislike knob and tube wiring so much? There are a couple of very good reasons”

Safety: “One big difference between knob and tube and today’s wiring is that this system lacks a ground wire—that extra wire that runs deep into the earth. This is an important safety feature, since if something goes haywire in a home, the ground wire offers a path to offload the excess electricity. And that’s a very good thing,” the NAR says. In other words, “The lack of a ground wire in knob and tube wiring increases the chances that you’ll start a fire if you overload those circuits.”

Insurance: Most insurance companies are going to be as unhappy about the presence of knob and tube wiring as the stars of HGTV’s shows. Many companies won’t even insure a home with K&T wiring. And, if you find one that does, it is definitely going to cost you.

If you have discovered knob and tube wiring in your home – or in a home you were thinking of buying – you should definitely consult with a professional electrician. If the home is in Boca Raton, Highland Beach, Delray Beach, we would love to help you. Give us a call at (561) 303-5475 for an estimate on rewiring and an electrical panel change.