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How Do I know What Kind Of Wiring My Home Has?

Mar 24, 2024 11:30:00 AM

Knowing the type of wiring in your home is crucial for safety and insurance purposes. Different types of wiring have different risks associated with them, and understanding what you have can help you make informed decisions about maintenance and coverage. In Canada, homes can have various types of wiring, including aluminum, copper, and knob-and-tube. Here's a simple guide to help you identify what kind of wiring your home uses.

How to Check What Kind of Wiring Your Home Uses

Remove the cover plate from one outlet using a screwdriver and take a peek inside the outlet box. You can also check your circuit breaker or fuse box. Open the panel door and examine the wires connected to the breakers or fuses.

How to check your homes wiring types

Why Does The Type of Wiring Matter?

Knob-and-Tube Wiring

Knob-and-tube wiring was commonly installed in homes built before the 1950s. While it was once considered innovative, knob-and-tube wiring lacks a ground wire, and its insulation may deteriorate over time, increasing the risk of electrical fires and shocks. Knob-and-tube wiring does not have a ground which usually makes it incompatible with modern electronics. It is very difficult to find an insurance company that will insure a home with knob-and-tube wiring.

Knob-and-tube wiring is recognizable by its ceramic knobs and tubes.

Aluminum Wiring

Aluminum wiring gained popularity during the 1960s and early 1970s due to its lower cost compared to copper. However, aluminum wiring is more prone to overheating and oxidation, which can lead to fire hazards if not properly maintained. It can also be challenging to insure a home with aluminum wiring. Aluminum wiring is silver or grey in appearance.

Copper Wiring

Copper wiring, which has been the standard for modern electrical systems, offers better conductivity and durability compared to aluminum and knob-and-tube wiring. Buildings with copper wiring will have a ground cable on the back of an outlet. Copper wiring will appear orange, brown, or yellow.

How to check the type of wiring a home uses-1

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Jake McCoy

Written by Jake McCoy


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