Renovations Rewiring 101

October 5, 2016 by Valerie Griffiths

Griff-electric-portsmouth-ri-electrical-panelConsider this: The largest share of homes in Rhode Island were built in the 1950s and designed to accommodate minimal electrical use. The prevalence of computers, entertainment systems, air conditioning and large refrigerators is relatively recent. You can’t expect a home to keep up with modern day electrical needs when it’s just not equipped for it. If you’re planning to expand your home or do any renovation work, this is a good time to take a close look at the wiring.

Making upgrades in your home or business means more than just updating the structure itself. You want to be sure your new space can be utilized to its fullest potential for work, play, and everything in between. Just like you wouldn’t install a new toilet without updating the plumbing, you can’t renovate a space without updating the electrical wiring.

Let’s say you’re adding an addition onto your home with one extra bedroom and bathroom. There are four new outlets in the bedroom and two in the bathroom. Those are all new opportunities to plug in things that draw on the electrical system when it just wasn’t built to power that extra space.

Bringing your home’s wiring up to speed will help avoid any hiccups or safety issues that come with overloading your electrical system. Involving an electrician in the renovation project from the get-go will ensure your new space is powered to meet your changing electrical needs and that it’s up to code. Plus, it’s much easier to wire and rewire when the walls are already open rather than trying to get behind walls that are already built.

Here are a couple red flags:
Fuse Box: A sign that you have an outdated electrical system is that your home has a fuse box instead of a modern circuit breaker. Fuse boxes weren’t designed for the amount of power modern homes demand so they’re likely to blow out often. Upgrading to a circuit breaker during your residential rewiring project will ensure your system is rated for safe usage.
Outdoor Living: Many homes were not originally wired to accommodate much electrical use outdoors. If your outdoor space has become like another room in your home, you will need extra electrical wiring and outlets to accommodate outdoor lighting for dining as well as security, pool filters and landscape lighting.

It’s important that your home and renovations be properly wired, both for safety, and resale. If you ever put your home on the market, home inspectors and potential buyers will take a close look to ensure that your wiring is up to code. Having it properly rewired the first time is far easier than cleaning up an electrical mess in the long run.

Be ready, work with your local electrician, and enjoy your new space in comfort and style.