Cost to rewire my home?

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  #1  
Old 01-05-07, 11:47 PM
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Cost to rewire my home?

I own and live in a 1966 ranch style home in Huntington Beach,CA with my wife and kids that has aluminum wire, (1600sf, 4bd, 2bth). I have had a few plugs burn out and our lights dim all the time when something comes on. We are adding new electronics/applicances and were thinking about rewiring the house along with an upgraded service panel (to 150amp max per Edison from 100). We would be going from about 15 to 20 circuts, GFCI in 2 baths/kitch, and hard wire smoke detectors in each room. This would bring us up to city code which is require for this level of rewire.

My neighbor is an electrician and has quoted about 12k for this job.
I was wondering if that sounds in the ball park?

I know I can pigtail the aluminum but that does not solve my overloaded circuit problem and does not help when I plan to add a new bonus room later this year.

Any comments, opinions are much appreciated.
Thanks,
SurfCityUSA
 
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  #2  
Old 01-06-07, 02:32 AM
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Have you considered doing some of the work yourself?

Changing out the main is the most difficult part of the job and most power companies would have a problem with a homeowner doing this type of work. I haven't seen too many 150 amp panels, so it would probably be better to just go 200 amp for the upgrade. This could run anywhere from $1500 to $2000+.

Running your own circuits isn't too difficult, just get familiar with how electricity works. You said your house is a ranch, how do you like attics?
 
  #3  
Old 01-06-07, 04:13 AM
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Aluminum wiring is not a problem, but the devices connected to it(outlets/switches) often are. There are outlets and switches designated for aluminum, they are marked for CO/ALR. Rewiring the house is not warranted on an ecnomical basis, pigtail and/or replace devices. Upgrading the service is a good idea, especially if adding to the house, and splitting circuits. If the major appliances, range, dryer, etc., are electric, consider a 200A panel, not much cost difference between 200 and 150. Adding circuits to bathrooms and kitchens is a good place to start splitting out old circuits. Kitchen countertops require 2 20A circuits, and bathroom require a 20A circuit, all GFI protected. Many codes require AFCI protection for bedroom circuits, check local code authority.
 
  #4  
Old 01-06-07, 04:46 AM
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Do the rewires job. Either do it yourself, or have someone do it for you, but get at least three quotes.

Aluminum branch circuit wiring is a fire waiting to happen. While it is safe, if properly installed, it needs to be inspected each year and any issues found need to be addressed. Often this yearly inspection is never done, and not too many homeowners know how to do this properly anyway.

Further, some insurance companies will not issue policies for aluminum wiring, and/or will charge a very stiff premium if they do, or they may require that the rewire be done in some time period as a condition of issuing a policy. This is similar to policies on houses with fuse boxes.

I suggest that you get a full 40 position 200 amp panel. You will want the space available in the panel. You can discuss with your electrician whether or not to get the 150 or 200 amp service, but remember that the cost difference will be for parts (wire), not for labor.
 
  #5  
Old 01-06-07, 05:03 AM
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Prices vary widely depending on where you live.

You should get at least three bids. I would get five. Throw away the highest and lowest, then decide between the rest.

Be sure that the bids are specific as to what will be done. You will be compairing apples to oranges when making your decision.
 
  #6  
Old 01-06-07, 06:29 AM
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Originally Posted by racraft View Post
Aluminum branch circuit wiring is a fire waiting to happen....

I suggest that you get a full 40 position 200 amp panel. You will want the space available in the panel. You can discuss with your electrician whether or not to get the 150 or 200 amp service, but remember that the cost difference will be for parts (wire), not for labor.

We have had a few neighbors have to call the fire deparment over the years. Nothing major, but it was the aluminum.

The power company has told the neighbor electrician that 150 amp is the largest I can go. I am not sure if this is a meter limitation or something else.

Thanks,
SurfcityUSA
 
  #7  
Old 01-06-07, 07:46 AM
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150 amps is the service size. You can (and should) buy a 200 amp full size panel. You will put a 150 amp circuit breaker in the panel as the main breaker.
 
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