It certainly is common where basements aren't necessary. My Alabama house is
on a slab. Basements are virtually unheard of. Of all the houses we looked
at (50+) only one had a basement. I only looked at houses with basements,
It makes the job 10x worse. It's not going to be done.
Sure, but they are rare in places. ...and getting more rare everywhere as
people look for more living space.
even when first hand reports are posted here by multiple other people
some deny k&T is a issue.'
so what about income properties tv show? they talk about it in detail
when its found. usually the old owner covered it up to get the home
As long as the wiring is in good condition, there is nothing inherently
unsafe about Knob and Tube wiring. However, the knob and tube wiring I
have seen had old cloth based insulation that had degraded leaving many
parts of the wiring bare and exposed. This is both a shock and fire hazard.
In addition, Knob and tube wiring is not rated for use under insulation. It
can overheat and cause a fire.
My in-laws had difficulty getting home insurance, and paid higher rates
until we upgraded the electrical system. I think most of that was due to
the old rusted fuse panels that kept blowing, recepticles mounted without
boxes, and exposed K&T wiring that had lost it's insulation. The entire
system was in dangerously poor condition.
Evern notice that these things are always FOAF, never any credible first hand
experience? How would the insurance company know anything about how often
fuses blew or how much rust was on the panel? That said, anyone with a rusty
fuse panel is a moron. Actually, less than a moron; even a moron knows that
electricity and water don't mix.
As Clare mentioned, based on the age of the house (100 years old), the
insurance company required an on-site inspection before they would insure
the home. We had to have it reinspected after we upgraded the electrical
system to qualify for the lower rates.
Nothing lasts forever. Even in dry conditions, moisture in the air will
cause metal to oxidize and rust over time.
Rust and corrosion were just one symptom of an overall aging electrical
system. Crumbling insulation on the wiring, old outlets that had worn out,
burnt wiring around lighting fixtures, overloaded circuits, etc. all
contributed to the unsafe conditions. My in-laws are older seniors in poor
health on a fixed income. They couldn't afford to have it fixed and didn't
have the skills or physical ability to do it themselves. So it continued to
deteriorate over many years (they have lived in the house over 50 years).
On Sun, 27 May 2012 15:37:18 +0000 (UTC), HerHusband
I work every morning for a large insurance brokerage. Houses with
knob and tube wiring are EXTREMELY hard to insure in the Ontario
Canada market. They require a "condition" inspection - and not too
many K&T wired houses will "meet condition" enough for an inspector to
sign off. A bit of K&T in lighting circuits only will often pass if
it is the "later" K&T that was installed with boxes and was NOT part
of a "ring" wiring topology. "Ring" wiring was not common - and was
virtually history by the early teens (1910-1915), but was found in
quite a few "early" homes.
K&T to outlets is virtually impossib;le to get a pass on, regardless
Same situation exists with aluminum wiring. To write a new policy with
aluminum wiring requires a "condition inspection" - and either
pigtailed to copper or switched over to co-alr wiring devices to pass.
60 amp or smaller main service panels are also virtually un-insurable.
Fuse panels are not a problem (yet) but are part of the "condition"
Galvanized water pipe and cast iron sewer pipes are another red flag -
getting them insured is getting harder every day.
Many safety systems (seatbelts, tamper resistant outlets, etc.) were
available long before the government required their use. In most cases,
people choose not to spend the extra money on them if they don't have to.
The average consumer is more likely to upgrade to leather seats or a better
stereo then to pay for better safety features.
Precisely the point. You leftist busybodies have to force people to do what
*you* want them to do, rather than let them decide for themselves what's
important. You just *have* to control others' lives to have any meaning in
I've had "builder grade" receps stop holding a plug securely after
about 30 years or so...
that said I use spec grade for everything that I can except for
emergency repairs when I'm scrounging in the junk box because a) spec
grade from the supply house is about the same price as builder grade
from Home Despot and b) as someone else correctly noted, the labor is
the largest part of the job, even if it takes me 10 minutes to replace
a switch or recep, that costs more than the $2 for the device.
Additionally if the spec grade ones are the "back wire" type they can
actually save on labor vs. looping the wires under the screw terminals
as they will accept a straight wire under the terminal. (not the same
as "back stab," I'm referring to the ones where the screw terminals
have the little square captive washers under them to securely hold the
On Fri, 18 May 2012 14:12:19 +0000 (UTC), HerHusband
What state requires this? I can buy the plain old common ones by the
case where I live. Not to mention that I dont have kids and sure dont
want to have to hassle with some stupid cover. I'd probably bust them
off if I had to.
Same here. I'm always annoyed when stores continue to sell things that
don't meet codes, especially codes that have been around for years.
I bought a couple packs of the common outlets, not knowing the codes had
changed. Then the inspector notified me of the new code requirement, which
meant I had to buy additional packs of the tamper resistant outlets and
replace them all. Not a big deal, but I could have saved a lot of time and
money if the stores made the compliant outlets more visible.
There's no "cover" really, they just have little shutters inside the slots
the plug goes into. Unless you get down and look for the shutter in the
slots, you would never know the difference between the outlets.
My in-laws are in their 70's, so I was worried the tamper resistant outlets
would affect how things get plugged in. Thankfully, I couldn't detect any
difference when plugging things in.
We don't have small kids either, but guests sometimes do. Anyone who has
ever had kids knows you only need to turn your back for a few seconds for
kids to do something stupid. :)
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