Knob-and-Tube ?-Sprky


Old 03-22-00, 09:37 PM
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Couple buying two-story historical 1918 home. Most knob-and-tube replaced (or is to be), EXCEPT in downstairs ceiling fixtures and wall sconces. Pro electrician recommends replacing this by either tearing out downstairs plaster ceilings/walls or cutting up hardwood floors upstairs to access. Buyer then has more experienced licensed General Home Inspector- who also has all licenses/experience as General Contractor, Electrician, Plumber, Heating & Air and even Auctioneer license- tell them that this knob-and-tube does NOT need to be replaced. He spent over 6 hours inspecting this 3,850 sq. ft. home that is very well-built and in very good condition, and he says that as long as this knob-and-tube is not disturbed (apparently never has been), that it should last for "another 82 years". This is a really beautiful old home, with beautiful wood floors up and down, etc., and the man and his wife do NOT want to tear up the house to do this wiring, if it isn't ABSOLUTELY necessary. What is your opinion, Sprky? Mike aka OldGuy. Edit: Forgot. House has new 200 amp breaker panel with new/old wiring into it.

[This message has been edited by OldGuy (edited March 23, 2000).]
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Old 03-23-00, 04:31 PM
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hello oldguy,
well lets put it this way, its not absalutly necessery to replace knob and tube, i have some in my home as well, every thing that was easly goten to has been done, like this house u r talking abought, but mine will also be replaiced as the rooms are redone. but on the other hand i also know of a home that recently cought fire and the same thang had been done there. the problem with knob and tube wireing is that the insulation deterates, and becomes hard and brittle, and flakes off. i have rewired homes that had knob and tube in walls where they blew in insulation and the wires were almost bare due to insulation falling off. ther is no way that any 1 can say for certion that the wireing that can not be seen is 100% ok and will last another 85 years, in my opnion theres only a 50/50 chance that the wires r in good contition, i have seen knob and tube both ways in consealed walls. heres some food 4 thought wires can be fished in cellings and walls with out tareing up every thing with minabale damage which can be easly repaired, i must admit it takes a longer time to do it this way but it can be done.
Old 03-23-00, 05:37 PM
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Thank you, Sprky. Those were my thoughts, too. I wanted your (a third pro)opinion to pass along. I think that they should not tear up their house, but should replace this interior knob-and-tube downstairs ceiling/interior wall wiring as it becomes reasonable to do with other renovations. The downstairs ceiling fixtures aren't used that often anyway (high ceilings and lots of lamps), so I think that they can get by for a reasonable period of time. The home already has blown-in insulation in the exterior walls, and these are interior walls/ceilings, so no problem with disturbing the knob-and-tube insulation. Thanks, again! Mike aka OldGuy

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