27 October 2016 by Martin Lee
Some people may want to undertake a full rewire or upgrade the current system, particularly those moving into a new property which might be 25 years or older.
Undertaking a full or partial rewire in a property is a big job and one that should only be carried out by a registered electrician.
How do I know if my property needs a Rewire? All electrical installations, over time, will deteriorate naturally as they are a working mechanism made up of various components and working systems.
For wiring systems more than 25 years old we would always recommend having the electrical system checked out, this is achieved by carrying out an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR).
An EICR will help identify any faults or defects which could require improvement. It will also give you an idea of any work that might be required and potential cost if you are considering upgrading the electrical installation or remodelling it to include additional circuits.
A full rewire usually takes place when major building work such as an extension or conversion is being carried out – prior to any plastering or decoration. Other occasions when a rewire might be necessary include;
>After flood or fire damage
>If electrical installation has become unsafe
>Installation of several new circuits
>Upgrade of building/property.
What is the process of a Rewire?
Carrying out a rewire will require a large amount of disruption to the main fabric of a property. It is likely that all switches, fittings, sockets and the consumer unit will be replaced and require new wiring.
A total rewire will involve two stages of working; first fix and second fix.
First Fix - All first fix work will take place before plastering work and, usually, at the same time as any central heating and plumbing work.
This is to ensure all cabling is hidden so the installation will involve lifting the floor coverings and floorboards and possibly the skirting boards too, chasing out channels in the walls and possibly in some ceilings that are inaccessible from above.
As well as installing new cabling, first fix stage may involve fitting new back boxes for all sockets and switches. In addition to rewiring for all power and lighting circuits, it is a good opportunity to rewire for modern central heating controls, alarms, smoke detectors and doorbells, to add outdoor lighting and sockets, and to rewire the telephones and television aerial sockets. It is also worth redesigning the wiring plan for sockets and switches to make sure it meets your needs and those of modern house buyers.
Second Fix - Once the first fix stage has been completed, the property can be re-plastered or the walls and ceilings filled and made good, and the flooring replaced.
The second fix work can then proceed fitting sockets and switch plates, light fittings, the consumer unit and wiring any electric fans, cookers, extractor hoods, electric showers
and the immersion heater and boiler wiring.
What are the benefits of having a Rewire? Having a full rewire will bring the electrical installation in your property up-to-date with the latest wiring regulations. It will also give you the opportunity to modernise your home with a new consumer unit containing residual current devices (RCDs) and circuit breakers, new light fittings, additional sockets to suit your needs and the most up-to-date, modern wiring available.
How long will a Rewire take? A full rewire can take, on average up to between 5-10 days, depending on the size of the property. The time taken depends on the number of contractors working and the exact scope of work involved for your home.
I am considering a Rewire, what do I need to be aware of? A full rewire has to be notified to the local building control department so that it meets the appropriate safety standards. Find a Registered electrician before any work to upgrade your wiring commences.Find out if the work complies with Part P of the building regulations and that the appropriate notification and certification will be taken care of once the work is completed. A rewire can be costly and we recommend that you get at least three quotes before arranging for an electrician to carry out a full rewire, as the prices quoted could be markedly different.However, please be aware that the lowest cost does not always mean the best job – so do your research carefully and maybe look at examples of other rewires carried out by the firm you choose to go with.
Thank you for reading our blog, if you would like any more information please contact us.