When should you rewire your home? What is the cost to rewire a house? These questions are crucial for homeowners and landlords. A defective electrical system can lead to a severe mishap in form of electrocution or a fire to cause serious injury. In order to ensure electrical safety modern electrical rewiring in the UK strictly follows building regulations. Thus everything about rewiring boils down to the age of a property.
Rewiring need and my house
If you are about a purchase a property that is over 25 years old then just hold on. We have something vital to share with you regarding your move. Properties that were built 25 years ago or earlier must have the wiring checked by a qualified and licensed electrician. The check is meant to find out whether the existing wiring is up to date. Thus you will automatically realise if the property needs a rewiring. You can thus plan accordingly keeping the rewiring cost in mind and can even bag a descent bargain with the vendor. It is important mentioning here electrical rewiring projects are invariably a costly affair.
On the other hand if you already own a property and planning a refurbishment it is highly relevant to know whether the existing wiring is old enough to be replaced with a new one. Rewiring a house is no easy affair; it may force you to redefine the timescale of your plans. In addition to that these projects often prove disruptive to décor. Therefore the best way out is to get these tasks completed as early as possible.
In both cases an electrical conditioning report proves to be extremely helpful, although we will discuss about it later at a more appropriate place.
Is electrical rewiring really necessary for a home?
This is a very valid question and it is also a pretty common query from landlords and homeowners. According to experienced and registered electricians associated with the Electric Works London rewiring is necessary for every home at one point of time or the other. The reasons are summed up as following –
When a property is not rewired for 25 to 30 years, chances are high that it needs to be upgraded in part to meet the latest regulations. The existing wiring can be potentially hazardous. It may not also be in a condition to cope with the needs of modern living. A major house or property remodelling plan that involves material alteration as per the definition of the Building Regulations usually involves electrical rewire in part. In many cases it may also involve rewiring the whole and not just a part of it which involves more money and disruption. In whole rewiring projects the consumer unit or fuse box is also usually replaced.
Home renovation projects that involve converting an attic or garage, extending a home constitute new work. Thus these projects require the entire new wiring must conform to Part P of Electrical Safety. The entire existing wiring must be improved to make sure it can easily carry the additional load of current without compromising your safety. In these cases establishing an earth to current connection is required. Also cross bonding has to be safe and sound.
There is no need to upgrade the rest of the existing wiring in extension or remodelling projects of homes. However wiring of the central heating control is required to be upgraded as per energy efficiency requirements specified by the Building Regulations.
How to ascertain your electrical wiring is old
It is not always easy to recognise an old electrical wiring. Actually the symptoms that catch up with age on a wiring are difficult to spot. Most of the cables and wiring in a building remain hidden away from the eyes behind the walls and inside the space in the loft. But regular inspection of the wiring is a smart strategy to keep electrical hazards away from your home or property. If you cannot carry out this routine inspection on your own then better call an electrician anywhere between every 3 and 5 months.
In the following paragraph let us explore few tips that help you understand whether your home needs to be rewired.
Let us start with the electric meter and the consumer unit or fuse box. If your fuse box belong to the bygone era with big white ceramic fuses then it is more likely that your property needs a thorough rewiring. Modern consumers units come with RCDs and circuit breakers. RCD is the shortened form of residual current device. It is a sensitive safety device and turns off electric connection automatically on discovering a fault.
If there is a mix of different types of sockets and switches in a building then chances are high the place needs rewiring immediately. These mixtures indicate the property went partial rewire earlier. Things become more obvious and transparent if there is wiring mounted on the surface running along up walls and skirting boards. It is obviously impossible to have old wiring to a new light fitting and so you know better what to do in this circumstance.
In some very old properties you are likely to come across round pin sockets or original dolly switches. Either of these are clear signs that the property needs to be rewired once again. Even the style and the colour of cabling say a lot. Chances are high to find some exposed cables around fuse boxes and at light fittings. The ongoing version of electrical wiring has PVCu insulation cable and it comes either in grey or white shade.
What is the cost of rewiring a house?
How much does a house rewiring cost? This is a very common and obvious question. The job does never involve a fixed or uniform price. Rather, the price keeps varying and depends on a number of factors. The factors include the size of a property, how much accessible or empty it is, the level of complexity involved in wiring and the standard of finish the property has. On average the price of rewiring a property with 3 bedrooms is about £3,500.