With the current state of real estate in the GTA, an increasing number of homeowners are opting to renovate older homes. Whether they’re purchasing older homes with the goal of improving them, or simply remaining in their existing residence, homeowners are planning additions, and taking on top to bottom reno projects in record numbers. What this means is that they’re coming face to face with electrical wiring that may no longer be up to code.
To learn more about the types of electrical issues faced by someone remodeling an older home, eieihome.com spoke with Hannah Taylor of Hotwire Electric, licensed, certified electrical specialists serving the GTA.
Who Should Have an Electrical Inspection
When purchasing a new home, scheduling a thorough inspection of its electrical workings should be a priority from day 1.
“Often, when buying an older home and conducting a home inspection, the fine print states get your own electrical inspection,” Ms. Taylor explains. “That’s because very often what’s hidden behind the walls is not [apparent] to a general home inspector’s eyes”.
This is not to say that inspections are only for new home buyers. If you have lived in an older home for many years you can also benefit from having your home inspected for electrical issues and other things you might not know about behind the walls.
Commonly Uncovered Problems
The electrical issues that may be discovered behind the walls generally depend on the age of your home. “There are reverse polarity issues and aluminum wiring issues, [as well as] ungrounded wiring, and the hated knob and tube line the hides like a spider web in the home’s electrical system,” Taylor says. “[The most commonly found issue] is an undersized panel or the old fuse box panel that limits the new homeowners’ dreams and visions of adding new feeds etc. to the panel”.
If left unrepaired, these electrical problems can cause inconveniences with outlets and home electronics that don’t work properly. Beyond that, they can also become a fire hazard and potentially endanger the safety of you and your family.
Scheduling an electrical inspection can also help you uncover any illegal wiring that might be found in the home.
“There is often illegal, unpermitted and unlicensed electrical wiring found in [older] homes,” Taylor explains. “[We see things like] potlights not wired to code, [or] the dishwasher may have power but not a code dedicated feed.
If any issues are uncovered, you can then hire a licensed, certified electrician –such as the experts at Hotwire Electric, to do the repairs.
“Having the ability to uncover issues [and have them expertly repaired] is the value of hiring Hotwire to do an in-home electrical inspection”. To schedule an electrical inspection with Hotwire Electric, visit hotwire-electric.com or call 416.553.5533.