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shaner123 02-07-2011 11:01 PM

looking at a house with "some" knob and tube
i looked at a house today (built in the late 1910's) and i really like it.. however when i was in the attic i noticed knob and tube leading upto the light fixture.

most of the other wiring in the attic was updated copper (some not properly stapled) in the basement all the wiring i could see was updated and the breaker was 100amp.

the home owners said that MOST of the knob and tube was gone, only a FEW live circuits existed and mostly for light fixtures..

ok so should i be worried about a few circuits? if they remove the visable k&t in the attic is this enough? will i be able to get insurance with "some knob and tube" and is there a way for me to test where the knob and tube circuts are without ripping apart the wall? some sort of detector i can plug into the wall outlet???

i really want this house but im not sure if this is a reason to walk away

plummen 02-08-2011 12:39 AM

ive never had an issue with knob/tube wiring as long as its not hacked up,any wiring can be bad if not properly installed :thumbsup:

oh'mike 02-08-2011 06:07 AM

Undisturbed knob and tube would not be a deal breaker for me----Just remember to put some money into the fix up budget in case there are circuits that need upgrading to suit your lifestyle.(computers--electronics)

If you are concerned hiring an electrician for a couple of hours to give you a tight inspection might be worth it.---Mike---

awdblazer 02-08-2011 07:10 AM

you might want to look into insurance
some companies wont give out insurnace if their is knob and tube

KeithCampos 02-08-2011 07:12 AM

Never had an issue with it, but i think it would be easy fixable

Tim Belco 02-08-2011 07:40 AM

I would certainly negotiate for a reduction in price for future electrical repairs. Knob and tube should be replaced with modern cable as soon as financially possible. As mentioned above, many insurance companies will not insure structures that have "live" knob & tube so check with your carrier. In addition, you may need to upgrade the 100 amp service you mentioned. It does meet the minimum requirements set by the NEC but depending on the square footage of the house, it may be undersized for modern electrical demand.

joed 02-08-2011 10:07 AM

Some K&T often means all the wall and ceilings where you can't see it. Should not be a problem is left alone, However it does not sound like it was left alone.

bpm 02-08-2011 03:57 PM

Insurance could be a big problem for you, depending on where you live. When I bought my house 8 years ago, there was some live K&T in the attic. The previous owner wouldn't fix the issue before selling the house and I didn't see it as a dealbreaker. However, I was only able to get insurance on the condition that I had all K&T removed within 30 days of sale, and a letter from a licensed electrician that the work had been completed. It was cheap and easy fix, but my K&T wiring was easily accessible and was done in just a couple of hours. Depending on the extent of the wiring in your house, and how easy it is to get to to replace, this could be an easy or a big (i.e., costly) job.

joed 02-08-2011 04:56 PM

I would be very simple to disconnect it. The problem comes when you try fish new cable for new circuits. That's when all hoes need to be cut.

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