Louisville is a city known for its great respect for old buildings. In any of the nearly 150 recognized neighborhoods in the city, there are architectural marvels you might enjoy restoring. When you buy an older home, there are many expensive upgrades that lie ahead of you, so it's best to go into both searching for a home and closing on a deal with potential expenses in mind. One of the biggest "money suckers" that may lay ahead is replacing old wiring and the electrical panel.
Louisville has at least 73 communities recognized by the White House's Preserve America Initiative and has the fourth highest number of total listings in the National Register of Historic Places. For many people who want to give an old property some love, there are several realities to consider about the wiring and electric panel that takes the "juice" that comes into your home and distributes it throughout your home to switches and outlets.
Potential Electrical Panel And Wiring Problems
Electrical panels are made to last 20 to 30 years. That means that if you look at a home built in the 1980s or before, your electrical panel could fail to pass code, show some degree of corrosion, or be insufficient to meet your needs.
Homes built in an earlier era can contain wiring that is dangerous. For example, wiring in homes built between 1900-1940 used knob and tube (K&T), which permitted wiring connections at various points in the home rather than in a junction box. There was no ground wire, but separate wires handled supply and return. Nowadays, if the knob and tube wiring is intact, you may still be safe, but many insurance companies do not want to cover it. This type of wiring was frequently modified by amateurs. If you buy a house where there may be no rhyme or reason to how wiring was installed, updating it can be difficult. You may have to...