knob and tube wiring and insulation

farmgirlinkySeptember 9, 2011

Would you electricity experts comment on this situation: our 100-year-old house has had a fair amount of updating done for its electrical system (new box and breakers, a fair amount of rewiring as the kitchen and bathrooms were remodeled), but I am certain that knob and tube wiring still is in use. When we bought the house an electrician advised us not to worry about it, and said it is not hazardous. But now we are considering different ways of insulating the house (a wooden frame stucco house with a vented attic, last insulated in the 1930s I'll bet, with rockwool), and I see that there are potential hazards with different sorts of insulation when one has knob and tube wiring. What would you recommend?

In our climate, blown cellulose has been recommended. Another option would be to blow foam in to the walls from holes on the outside, since we are planning to paint the house next year and could skim coat the holes in the stucco. But now I'm worried about this knob and tube issue. Thanks in advance for your advice.


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You cannot bury K&T in any kind of insulation.

    Bookmark   September 9, 2011 at 1:26PM
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Yikes. So ... I guess we'd better acquire a better understanding of the wiring in our house before we jump into any insulation plan. Funny how none of the insulation installers who have visited our house say anything about that. 'Cept I'm not laughing.

I wish, I wish that someone would set themselves up in a business called "Soup to Nuts Insulation Retrofitting for Old Houses" and would provide all the services that are needed when one is trying to diminish the amount of money one is sending to Saudi Arabia. But it seems as though most of these companies represent either blown cellulose or fiberglass or foam, and they don't seem to be talking much about potential wiring issues or air infiltration issues.

Sorry if I sound grouchy just now. I realize this does not qualify as a Big Problem. We do have a roof over our heads, and sometimes ice too!
Thanks, brickeyee

    Bookmark   September 9, 2011 at 5:54PM
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"they don't seem to be talking much about potential wiring issues"

They are insinuating contractors, not electricians or engineers.

Throw the material in the hopper, aim the hose.

    Bookmark   September 9, 2011 at 7:02PM
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