Cloth-covered wiring is generally considered a fire hazard, and in some situations, it can make getting home insurance tougher than it has to be. If your home is an old home or you intend to buy an old home, it’s relevant to note that it might have cloth wiring installed.
Unlike modern wiring, cloth wiring is covered in cloth and this material tends to deteriorate over time. The cloth insulation can become brittle, damaged by insects or rodents, and so on. All of these lead to exposing the wires underneath and this can lead to fires.
It has also been discovered that cloth is a poor insulator unable to hold in heat from wires subjected to the demands of modern homes. Cloth-covered wiring may also lack grounding, which makes your electrical system unsafe. The cloth insulator may contain asbestos, which is a hazardous substance to breathe in.
Identify cloth covered wiring
If you are unsure about having cloth-covered wiring, you can look out for the cloth material or any of the following brand names;
Essex, Dutrax, Cablex, Cirtrex, Cres-Flex, KFlex, Triangle PWC, Southwire, Phelps Dodge, and Paraflex.
How to know if your cloth covered wiring is a fire hazard
Just having cloth covered wiring doesn’t spell doom for your electrical system. Some cloth-covered wiring are in good shape and with minor modifications can continue to serve your home. Here are the steps to take to know where you stand with cloth-covered wiring in your home.
- Call the professionals
An experienced and licensed electrician is the professional you need to hire to determine the state of your electrical system. The electrical technician will confirm that the wiring is indeed cloth covered wiring and inspect the system to reveal any potential problems. This helps you save money on unnecessary repairs or nonexistent problems. If the electrician discovers that your cloth-covered wiring is a fire hazard, it saves you from future trouble and helps you take timely action.
What to do if your home’s cloth covered wiring is a fire hazard
After calling a professional to determine the status of your home’s electrical system, you could get good news or not so good news. If the electrician has discovered that the cloth covered wiring is a fire hazard or presents any other danger the best option will be to replace the wiring.
Replacing cloth wiring will cost a substantial sum but it is well worth it for your safety and a reliable electrical system. The electrician you hire for this project should be both experienced and licensed. Agree on all details such as cost, time, and more with the electrician before starting the project. The cloth wiring should be replaced with modern wiring which often uses PVC insulators. The wiring should also be up to code.
Don’t wait until cloth wiring has caused electrical fires and put your home in danger. Call an electrician today for an inspection.