First Time home buyer, did some homework


Old 05-15-05, 01:35 PM
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First Time home buyer, did some homework

, but I need to do more..

My service in my soon-to-be-'home' is 2 wire. I brought in a home inspector prior to the purchase to ensure there was nothing that came up that I didn't expect. (Smartest $300 I ever spent) The service is 100 Amp service, if I wanted to start replacing the 2 wire (ungrounded) with 3 (grounded), can this be done in stages, bit by bit (from panel to first outlet, first to second and so-on) until a circuit is complete? Or should it be done in 1 job one circuit at a time? I also plan on replacing the outlets with GFI outlets in the meantime. (until I figure out my first step)

Also I'm wondering the best way to run the 3 wire through the house? I was thinking of disconnecting the main feed to the circuit then attaching (duct tape?) the 3 wire to the rest and pull it through.

I'm truly an amateur but really want to get my hands dirty in my first home. Can anyone recommend some reading material (on or offline) that would teach me more about this topic?

Side note: the reason I'm even thinking about this, is I'm a computer guy, and I need my electricity as stable adn controlled as possible..

Thanks in advance...

Mark in Ontario, Canada
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Old 05-15-05, 04:17 PM
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: United States
Posts: 18,497
Yes, this is an ideal project to do bit by bit.

You are not going to be able to use the old cable to pull in the new cable. That's never going to work unless your house is wired all in conduit. Is it?

Because you probably need more power than the existing circuits can provide anyway, my advice would be to leave all the old circuits and wiring alone. If necessary, install a larger panel. Then wire in new grounded circuits where you need them. Start with where you are going to put your computers. Leave the old outlets in that room exactly as they are, and plan to supplement them with new outlets in new boxes. Routing the new cable with minimum wall damage is an art. Read as much as you can and you'll learn a bunch of new tricks. It's hard to generalize from here without seeing your house.

Unless you have beautiful old plaster walls you want to preserve, you might just want to learn how to drywall while you are learning how to run electrical. This is especially true if you plan to paint the walls anyway. Drywalling takes a bit of practice, but it's really easy once you've done a bit of it. And the electrical work will be easy once you rip off the old drywall.
Old 05-15-05, 04:24 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: NC, USA
Posts: 17,335
This sounds like a good job for an electrician since you are not talking about a simple little Saturday project. You may want a larger breaker panel (200 amp) in addition to all new wiring in the walls and new three prong outlets.

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