Everything You Need to Know about Knob and Tube Wiring

Author: Passey Electric. |


Most people have heard of knob and tube wiring, but many don't know exactly what it is. Knob and tube wiring got their name from the ceramic knobs used to hold the wires in place and the ceramic tubes used to protect the wires that ran through wood framing.

People used this type of wiring in homes built before 1950 because it was a cheap and easy way to wire a house. If you live in an older home, you may still have knob and tube wiring.

In this blog, we'll take a closer look at how knob and tube wiring works, its advantages and some potential dangers.

Advantages of Knob and Tube Wiring

The following are the three main advantages of knob and tube wiring:

1. It is a safe form of wiring.
2. It is very easy to install.
3. Knob and tube wiring are very durable.

Disadvantages of Knob and Tube Wiring

As your home ages, so does its wiring. While this type of wiring was once the standard, it's now considered outdated and potentially dangerous.

One of the biggest disadvantages of knob and tube wiring is that it's not grounded. If there is a short circuit, the electrical current will have nowhere to go but through you or your home, which could lead to serious injury or damage.

Another disadvantage of knob and tube wiring is that it's not very efficient. This type of wiring was designed for a time when electrical loads were much lower than they are today. As a result, knob and tube wiring can't handle the same amount of electrical current as modern wiring, which can lead to overloading and potential fires.

Finally, knob and tube wiring are often hidden behind walls and ceilings, making it difficult to inspect or repair. If there is a problem with the wiring, it can be hard to identify and correct, which could lead to further damage down the line.

How to Install Knob and Tube Wiring 

If you are installing knob and tube wiring in your home, there are a few things that you need to keep in mind. First, ensure that the power is turned off. Next, remove all the old wiring and any insulation around it. Once the area is clear, you can start installing the new wiring.

To install the new wiring:

Start by attaching the knob to the wall with a screw.
Run the wire through the tube and attach it to the other side of the wall.
Make sure the wire is tight, so it doesn't come loose.
Attach the cover plate to the wall to finish the installation.


Knob and tube wiring is an outdated electrical system that is no longer used in most modern homes. This type of wiring is considered to be unsafe and is not up to current electrical codes. 

Suppose you still have knob and tube wiring in your home. In that case, it is crucial to have it regularly inspected by a qualified electrician and make any necessary repairs or replacements. This is needed to avoid damages or, worse, potential fires. 

Passey Electric is an electrical company in Lethbridge that offers complete electrical solutions for your home or business. We have a team of specialists who can help you with all of your electrical needs. Book an appointment with us today to get started!