If you own an older home, you may not think of upgrading the electrical wiring as long as you can plug in your appliances and get electricity as needed. While an upgrade to electrical wiring may be expensive and something of a hassle, it can be necessary even if your home is getting power through all the outlets and plugs, and the reasons may surprise you. Note why it's good to consider an upgrade to electrical wiring in an older home no matter the expense or time it takes.
1. Wear and tear on electrical devices
The wiring in older homes may not provide enough amps, which is the amount of electrical current running along those wires, to power all the electrical devices you have in the home today. Your older home may have been built before large appliances and even hairdryers were common, so the wiring may not be able to provide all the amps needed to run several devices at once. In turn, they may start to slow down as they operate because they're not getting enough power.
This may not seem like a problem to you, but note that this means wear and tear on those devices as their motors, fans, and other parts struggle to work. You may be burning out your hairdryer, window air conditioner, and such devices sooner than you realise simply because they're not getting enough power as needed.
2. Insulation deterioration
If you don't tend to run large appliances and demand lots of power from your electrical wires, you may not think that they will ever get worn and frayed. However, older insulation material used to protect wiring and keep it from coming into contact with building materials of your home can easily deteriorate over time. This can be due to this material becoming dry and brittle, or simply from being worn by being in contact with electricity from the wiring. Today's wiring insulation is often a hard plastic, but insulation around older wiring may be made from felt or rubber.
You may notice pieces of insulation if you remove an outlet or take down a wall for any reason; very often it's black and somewhat soft. If you notice tiny pieces that resemble this material around outlets or that have collected around insulation in the walls, this may mean that the wiring needs to be replaced. Even if the wires themselves are safe, being without this protective insulation can put your home at risk for an electrical fire.
Contact a professional electrical company if you are concerned about the wiring in your old house.