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Knob and Tube Wiring

When an older home has Knob and Tube wiring, this could be considered as dangerous by most home owner’s insurance companies. Why is this old wiring considered to be so dangerous and what do you need to know about it?

Here are 5 top dangers of knob and tube wiring

By the 1950’s, knob and tube wiring was not considered to be up to building codes anymore. And today, more and more homeowners insurance coverage will not include damage to homes from knob and tube wiring or will not even provide coverage.

  • Knob and tube wiring is two-stranded – This means that there is no ground protection for all up to date homes. Without a proper grounding in a home, it can easily lead to someone getting shocked to death or even a house fire.
  • Old wiring uses old-style sheathing for insulation and is easy to break down inside walls, attics or crawlspaces. When this happens, there is now bare wire exposed. New wiring for today’s standards has heavy insulation that does not break down like the old cloth type.
  • Older electrical systems are usually rated for 60 amps of service and is easy to overdraw by today’s current homes electrical needs. With service this low, it can lead to overheating the entire wire system causing possible house fires.
  • Knob and tube wiring was never intended to carry the number of today’s electrical loads and makes it break down even quicker which again can lead to fires.
  • Because this old style wiring does not have a ground wire, many of today’s appliances may fail quickly due to all the circuitry that needs a good ground. And, on top of that, without proper grounding, you can become the ground, especially in kitchens and baths near the presence of water.


How can you tell if you have knob and tube wiring?

The best way is to call a qualified licensed electrician to inspect your electrical system. It shouldn’t take more than about an hour for them to render you a report of what you have and what it may take to make your home safe. Another way is to google images of knob and tube wiring and see if you have any wiring in your home that looks like those images.