Older houses were constructed long before the popularity of security systems, computers, and televisions. Not surprisingly, they might be ill-advised or even risky to install such devices in a house with old wiring. Although you prefer an old-fashioned home, the wiring system does not need to be like that. In other words, a totally rewiring home can be a good way to use modern electronic technology and appliances.
- Electrical panel
Electricity in our home is generally conducted by a lot of small branch circuits. Most modern houses come with at least 16 120-V circuits for small appliances and lighting and 2 240-V circuits for other heavy-duty appliances. For older houses, it is still possible not to have a 240-V capacity.
A circuit is protected against electricity overload, which would result in fire, sparks, or overheating, by fuses or circuit breakers. Therefore, your house will definitely have a fuse box or circuit breaker where the wiring starts. Just like anything, those units might wear out and increase the risks of safety hazards over time. It is necessary to take notice of any indications of device failure, particularly when your home is old. Issues such as power outages, buzzing sounds, and tripping wires could be the signs of some serious problems and need to be resolved by a professional electrician.
- Service capacity
In general, old houses are not constructed to handle those common demands of electrical technology today. Many of these come with 60-A service, while modern homes are designed with at least 100-A service. In most cases, 60-A service is not optimized for usability and safety. Several insurance firms often charge a greater premium or won’t insure houses with 60-A service.
The electricity needs of a house are often related directly to its size and number of electrical appliances. Basically, a service that is less than 100A might be not enough, particularly when the air conditioning is turned on or major devices are electric. Therefore, it is necessary to upgrade the wiring so that it would handle all appliances.
Most houses constructed after the 60s often come with insulated cables, along with grounded wires. Some older houses, particularly those constructed before 1945, might have a tube-and-knob system. A couple of house constructed between the 60s and 70s might have aluminium wiring, which would be more susceptible to common hazards. In most cases, older houses are more vulnerable to the wiring system that has deteriorating and inadequate insulation. Old houses were constructed before the best practices were inspected and codified, so these electrical systems might not live up the current electrical codes.
Most of the modern houses come with a minimum number of receptacles that are dictated by the current standard. Some of them, particularly in bathrooms and kitchens, have ground fault circuit interrupters or GFCIs. Those units are able to provide protection against electrocution and high currents. While nearly all older houses are only installed with 2-slot and ungrounded outlets, those units in modern houses come with a third or even fourth one.