When Should You Replace Old Electrical Wiring?

As a homeowner, it can be difficult to know when to replace old electrical wiring. Fortunately, a licensed residential electrician can let you know when new electrical wiring is necessary. New electrical wiring will not only make your home safer and up-to-code, but will also help make your life easier. No longer will you have to rely on extension cords or worry about tripping the circuit breaker. With new electrical wiring, these issues can be left in the past. Below, you will learn the signs it’s time to replace old electrical wiring.

Home Was Built Between 1965 and 1973

Many homes built between 1965 and 1973 used aluminum electrical wiring because it was more affordable than copper. However, copper remains the ideal material for electrical wiring because it’s non-corrosive, malleable, and conducts electricity well. 

In general, if your home is more than 30 years old, you’ll want to have a licensed electrician look at your electrical system to ensure it’s safe and code-compliant. For some houses, an upgrade to copper electrical wiring may be necessary.

Circuit Breaker Trips Often

Circuits become overloaded when there is too much demand placed on your home’s electrical system. For example, overloaded circuits are common after installing a new major appliance. The circuit breaker tripping is a protective response meant to prevent an electrical fire. 

Unfortunately, it also makes the power go out for your entire home. If your circuit breaker trips, you’ll need the expertise of an experienced Grand Rapids electrician. An electrical contractor will be able to upgrade electrical wiring so it has a larger electrical capacity.

Appliances are Plugged into Extension Cords

You shouldn’t have to rely on extension cords to plug in electrical appliances. If you find yourself using extension cords on a daily basis, this is a sign that there aren’t enough electric outlets in the room. An experienced electrician will be able to replace the old electrical wiring in your home with a system that has enough outlets for your household’s energy needs.

Dim or Flickering Lights

Do the lights dim or flicker when turning on an electrical appliance? This is a sign that the old electrical wiring in your home isn’t able to run enough electricity to appliances. Dim or flickering lights can be a sign of a serious electrical work issue, which is why you should call a professional as soon as possible. 

Damaged or frayed wiring can cause lights to dim and pose as a risk to you and your family. It’s also not uncommon for old electrical wiring to corrode and lose conductivity, which causes lights to dim or flicker.

Stained Electrical Outlets

A discolored or stained electrical outlet needs to be reported to an electrician as soon as possible. This is a sign that there are uncontrolled surges of power running through your home’s electrical system. To prevent an electrical fire, you’ll need to call an electrician as soon as possible to repair or replace old wiring.

Frayed Wires

Sometimes wires can become frayed over time. If you’ve noticed that the wires inside of your walls are fraying, it’s definitely time to replace them. Frayed wires are dangerous and can cause a fire if not replaced immediately. 

Need an Electrician? 

If you are interested in our home rewiring services, please feel free to call our Lowell electrical contractors at (616) 987-0596. The licensed electricians at Flat River Electric strive to help homeowners maintain safe and functional electrical systems.

[This blog post has been updated.]

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    Paul Balaam
    Paul Balaam

    5 out of 5 stars

    posted 2 weeks ago

    Had a 45-yr old kitchen ceiling light fixture that began to flicker. Flat River came out the next day. Caleb anticipated all potential fixes and came totally prepared. We decided a new fixture was needed. Somehow he anticipated what we might like and had put it on the truck. It was perfect. He even had a brown switch plate with a dimmer, no less. Caleb and Sam were very efficient, friendly, and professional. Mike is lucky to have them as a crew for his company.

    Jeff Blanch
    Jeff Blanch

    5 out of 5 stars

    posted 1 week ago

    I purchased a new modular home just over a year ago. I was having an issue with an LED light that was in my stairwell to the basement. The light would not shut completely off and had a low glow because the light was still getting a little power somehow. I had the house manufacturer out three times over the last year and they could not fix the issue. I was tired of this light still on after a year, so I called Flat River Electric. They came out the next day. Within 30 minutes that had the issue fix. They were polite, professional, cleaned up after themselves. I would 100% use them again and I will in the future.

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    posted 1 week ago

    Caleb and Sam were superb! Arrived early, quickly understood the complexity of the job, and worked late to finish it. They were courteous and respectful. Totally cleaned everything up when done.I am very detailed oriented and Flat River, Caleb and Sam exceeded my expectations. Highly recommend!