Nobody gets too excited about wiring in the house, but there is a type of wiring that could give you some stress if you don’t know enough about it.

What is knob-and-tube wiring?

Knob-and-tube wiring can usually be found in houses built before the 50s. I’m going to avoid being too technical, but the name comes from the insulating knobs and ceramic tubes that are part of the wiring.

What’s the problem with knob-and-tube wiring?

Although some argue that knob-and-tube wiring is relatively safe, it is considered potentially hazardous because it doesn’t have a third wire for grounding. This dicey for plugging in appliances that have a 3-prong plug. There is also a potential fire hazard that comes from the break down of the insulation around the wiring. However, for places like the bedroom, living room or dining room, there are generally less reported issues.

The big problem is that many companies won’t insure houses with knob-and-tube wiring.

What to do if you have knob-and-tube wiring?

Although it may be hard to find, some companies will insure houses with knob-and-tube wiring, such as TD Insurance, The Co-operators, and Aero Insurance. However, there will most likely be stipulations, such as asking for a premium or even giving you a time constraint in which you must replace the knob-and-tube wiring. If you’re not happy with those options, there are companies out there that specialize in knob-and-tube insurance.

The insurance aside, it’s most important that you and your family stay safe. Hire a qualified electrician to inspect the wiring in your house. It’s especially concerning if there’s high electricity usage in your house. In the long run, it may be worth your while to replace the wiring entirely.

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