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  1. #41
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    Aug 2007
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    Denver, CO
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    Default Re: Knob & Tube Wiring

    HA!HA!HA!............ That pool party pic is a riot! ROFL!

    Love ya like a brother my friend.

    Hey, just did some business with a lady that lives in Brantford, Ontario.

    What an incredibly great woman I am fortunate enough to say I “know”.

    Never had anything shipped to me from Canada before.

  2. #42
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    Default Re: Knob & Tube Wiring

    That pool party pic is crazy ... but what's more crazy is I think they're all lectricians



    What an incredibly great woman I am fortunate enough to say I “know”.
    Yep... that pretty much describes us .... great folk up here

  3. #43
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    Default Re: Knob & Tube Wiring

    Quote Originally Posted by JLMCDANIEL View Post
    The old K&T wiring had insulation the would dry out and become very brittle, it would fall off due to vibration or touch. Blowing in insulation can cause it to fall off of large sections. If any moisture were to get into the wall cavity the wet insulation becomes conductive. As Kentvw points out, you are not permitted to insulate wall cavities with K&T wiring as per the NEC, period.
    Jack
    Ditto.... to what Jack said ..... besides the reality of insurance companies making it more difficult to become insured with K&T wiring.
    Last edited by canuk; 03-12-2008 at 09:19 PM.

  4. #44

    Smile Re: Knob & Tube Wiring

    Hi folks,

    Sincere apologies, I didn't mean to endanger anyone, just suggest reasonable alternatives to those who would rather not suffer the expense nor potential damage to surfaces that results from a complete rewire. Unless you have a solid knowledge of electricity, I don't for a moment suggest that anyone ignore or break electrical codes... anymore than I'd say drivers should take a right on red without stopping.

    Though some of my previous suggestions are blasphemy to the NEC, none of them are wrong if you actually know the true nature of electricity and also the nature of the wires/pipes/building materials in your own particular home. NEC doesn't trump the laws of physics, so if you know what you're doing, you may consider yourself a professional driver on a closed course, while others must mind all of the street lights and stop signs.

    I've worked on wiring of every age and have numerous samples on hand, none of which could lose its sheathing by typical household vibration or a passing flurry of blown-in insulation, nor has it occurred in my use of every conceivable type of structural insulation. Not a large statistical study here, just my own experience. Could be different if wires were terribly over-heated, as is usually the case up close to an overhead lighting fixture. I've also encountered wet wiring (after roofing/siding leaks) in which the moisture allowed significant current to flow between conductors inside walls. Rather than tear apart historic plaster walls, ceilings, and ornate redwood panelling to rewire, we had the luxury of being able to just shut down those circuits for a couple of months until they dried out, which restored their functionality.

    Speaking of wet wires, how about taking your typical 120V potential across hot and neutral and plunging the ends of those two wires into a bucket of dirty water? To the amazement of my students, I do this in class and then proceed to stick my hand into the electrified bath without feeling much more than a tickle. No heat, no sparks, no fire, no blown breakers, and I live to tell about it. Don't try this at home folks. Hmm..., I wonder if Mythbusters has tested the old toaster in the bathtub method for murder?

    Best wishes to all! Questions welcomed!
    ~Eric
    Last edited by Eric Anderson; 03-16-2008 at 04:17 PM.

  5. #45
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    Default Re: Knob & Tube Wiring

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Anderson View Post
    I've also encountered wet wiring (after roofing/siding leaks) in which the moisture allowed significant current to flow between conductors inside walls. Rather than tear apart historic plaster walls, ceilings, and ornate redwood panelling to rewire, we had the luxury of being able to just shut down those circuits for a couple of months until they dried out, which restored their functionality.
    Best wishes to all! Questions welcomed!
    ~Eric
    Eric, if the insulation had been in good shape you would not have had a problem with leakage. And if you don't think NEC trumps physics wait until you insuarnce company refuses to give you fire insurance untill your house is brought up to code. By the way I knew a guy that test cartrage fuses with two of his fingers, current flow will aloow that but it doesn't make it smart.
    Jack
    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

  6. #46
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    Default Re: Knob & Tube Wiring

    Though some of my previous suggestions are blasphemy to the NEC, none of them are wrong if you actually know the true nature of electricity and also the nature of the wires/pipes/building materials in your own particular home.
    Eric .... I can appreciate your thoughts .... however .... unless you are the original owner of the home with K&T ( not too likely ) there is no way to be absolutely certain as to the health of that wiring.

    As mentioned earlier K&T in itself is not an issue .... rather the abuse and deterioration over time is .... enough of a concern for governing bodies and insurance companies to have a strong bias toward caution.

    In most cases it would be difficult for homeowners to know the nature of the wires /pipes/etc. in their homes especially when a good portion resides within the walls or other hidden recesses. In my experience of opening walls etc. there have been many occasions of coming across K&T .... some has been in good condition and some has been in extremely dangerous condition within the same home.

    This is not meant as a scare tactic to frighten folks into hurrying to hire contractors for loads of money to remove it all .... rather information to be aware and error on the side of caution.

    The reality is that there governing rules for K&T and they should be respected also is the reality that insurance companies are biased against K&T.

    People have to be aware of these realities.

  7. #47
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    Mar 2008
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    South Jersey
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    Default Re: Knob & Tube Wiring

    Woodgreen,
    I live in a home built in 1885 with Knob and Tube wiring. When I started digging into my home's wiring I found 3 circuits with the knob and tube: one for lights in the basement, one for the overhead lights in the first and second floor, and the last one for outlets in the dining room and parlor, but with a splice to run some new 14 gauge wire to the kitchen for the dishwasher and garbage disposal. So far I have rewired the basement lights, the parlor and dining room, and added an additional breaker for the dishwasher (I removed the garbage disposal). The wiring was in pretty good condition overall, but I found one section where the insulation was in pretty bad shape: it practically crumbled off when I touched it. I wasn't too concerned about the last circuit with the first and second floor overhead lights, but I recently found that there is blown insulation in the second floor ceiling. Most of the ceilings are the original plaster, two with plaster medallions, so I plan on pulling up sections of the floor to rewire the light fixtures. It is the original pine floors, but they are in much worse shape than the ceilings are.

    I have done everything myself so I have saved a lot of money, but it takes a lot longer too. (Disclaimer: I am not an electrician by trade and I am NOT suggesting anyone do this themselves) I'm sure an experienced electrician would be much quicker and more efficient, and it would be much less of a hassle living in the home during the process-just ask my wife. Considering it's age, knob and tube wiring can be very dangerous so I recommend replacing it. It is better to be safe then homeless.

  8. #48
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    Jun 2007
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    Shamokin, Pa.
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    645

    Default Re: Knob & Tube Wiring

    Quote Originally Posted by canuk View Post
    Ditto.... to what Jack said ..... besides the reality of insurance companies making it more difficult to become insured with K&T wiring.
    Next to impossible in Central Pa to acquire homeowners ins. for homes with K&T. And add outdated & undersized services to that list.

  9. #49
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    5

    Default Re: Knob & Tube Wiring

    I've been reading alll the K&T comments & don't know what to do.
    Our insurance company will cancel us if we don't remove K&T wiring. They claim everyone in our town, (that is covered by them) has K&T removed. I don't believe that. An electician quoted $4,000.00. We don't know what to do.
    Can we just add new circuits & new oulet boxes where it's needed and cut the K&T?

  10. #50
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    Default Re: Knob & Tube Wiring

    woodgreen,

    I probably, well, no that's not right........ I am guilty of taking your thread off topic. So, lets get back on topic.

    I'm kind of taking it that you can not afford the four grand?

    There are quite a few of us here who would be happy to try and walk you through about any wiring issues you have with your house. Here's where I would start:

    I don't know what kinds of codes are enforced where your at but I would go down to your local building dept. and explain your situation and what they are going to require regarding your KT upgrade.

    To answer one of your questions; Yes, K&T is usually just abandoned and cut out where it's accessible but left abandoned in the walls.

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