Do you have Knob and Tube wiring or Aluminum wiring in your home? If so, your insurance company may require a detailed evaluation of the electrical system by a licenced electrician. Keith Langlois of Building Insights Inc. is a licenced electrician and offers detailed residential electrical inspections and the required documentation for insurance purposes.
Knob and Tube wiring
Was used from the early 1900’s to the 1940’s, at best it is more than 70 years old. Many insurance companies these days will not provide or renew coverage for properties with this type of wiring. Some insurance companies may provide coverage if there is a small percentage of Knob and Tube wiring as determined by an electrician.
Age, mechanical abuse, alterations, rodent activity and overloading are all factors in the ultimate deterioration of the wire. Deterioration of the wire can cause shock and fire related hazards.
Was used from the mid 1960’s to the mid 1970’s. When installed properly this is a safe system. However, the characteristics of aluminum wire make it more vulnerable to improper installation and potential hazards.
Aluminum wire oxidizes, expands and contracts at a great rate than copper or brass and reacts poorly to dissimilar metals. For these reasons’ compatible devices (switches, outlets, wire connectors) must be used with Aluminum wire. Many homes built in this era did not incorporate the use of these compatible devices at the time of construction, therefore many insurance companies these days require an inspection of the system and documentation stating the system has been properly installed or retrofitted.