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Old 01-15-2008, 07:52 PM   #1
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Resources for a novice

Cheers - I am undertaking a thorough and careful remodel of my 1800s home, including updating the electrical system. It ranges from properly grounded romex installed in the 1990s to hybrids of romex and K&T to other scary stuff I don't even know how to describe.

I am looking for some solid resources to educate myself about wiring.

Any Advice on Books? Websites? Tools I shouldn't try working without (I have already used my new Christmas gift, a Santronics AC sensor, to avoid problems during demolition).

Right now I know enough to know I need to learn more; and I have the time and the inclination to learn how to do it correctly.


I have been reading the forums, not a bad place to start, thanks for the help.


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Old 01-15-2008, 08:09 PM   #2
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Read some basic books to get an understanding, then (if you have the connections) walk a job site with an electrician and buy an hour or two of their time. I did this a long time ago and that provided me enough knowledge to ask better questions.


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Old 01-15-2008, 11:06 PM   #3
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The large 8-1/2 x 11 paperback with a title like "how to do wiring" sold at Home Depot and similar stores is a good starter.

But you will need to know your way around the National Electric Code book to avoid getting into situations that will fail inspection. Examples: too many wire ends entering a box of a given size, and not having the required wire size for the line going to, say, the bathroom (12 gauge here) and sharing the same circuit such as the kitchen counter appliance circuit that should not be shared with other rooms' receptacles.

Last edited by AllanJ; 01-15-2008 at 11:09 PM.
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Old 01-16-2008, 12:41 AM   #4
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Find a book that will teach you how to earn extra money and use it to hire a good electrician.
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Old 01-16-2008, 02:32 PM   #5
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Look for a book called Your Old Wiring by David Shapiro.

There's an electrical safety manual online at

Fluke has some useful application notes at NOTES(FlukeProducts)#
Look for "Diagnosing Power Problems at the Receptacle."

The NEC is available for free online viewing (but you can't copy or print it) at the NFPA website. The 2005 NEC is at this link:
The 2008 edition is at this link:

You'll have to check with your local AHJ to see which version is in effect in your area and what local amendments they have adopted.
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Old 01-16-2008, 04:40 PM   #6
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"Wiring a House" by Rex Cauldwell
"Electrical Wiring, Residential" by Mullin
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Old 01-16-2008, 06:23 PM   #7
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"Call an Electrician" by Willet Burn


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