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Aluminum Wiring Repair & Rewiring

aluminium wiring services and repairing

In recent years there has been an increase in the concern over the safety of aluminum wiring. In particular, purchasers or owners of homes built from the mid 1960’s to the late 1970’s with aluminum wiring are finding that many insurer’s will not provide or renew insurance coverage on such properties unless the wiring is inspected and repaired or replaced as necessary, and the work is inspected by the ESA (Electrical Safety Authority), and a copy of the certificate of inspection is provided to the insurer. In some cases the insurer may require replacement of the aluminum wiring with new copper wiring.

Many homes have a mixture of both aluminum and copper wiring.

PROBLEMS WITH ALUMINUM WIRING

Reported problems with aluminum wiring have been related to the overheating and failure of aluminum wiring terminations. This is due to the tendency of aluminum wiring to oxidize, and aluminum’s incompatibility with devices designed for use with copper wiring only. Aluminum has a higher rate of expansion than copper wiring, which can lead to loose connections, arcing and melting, eventually fire. Ware cover plates or discoloration of switches or receptacles, flickering lights or the smell of hot plastic insulation may be evidence of poor or improperly made connections.

WHAT CAN THE HOMEOWNER DO?

All homes are wired differently and must be assessed on an individual basis. The Electrical Safety Authority recommends that the homeowner hire an authorized electrical contractor that is knowledgeable in the approved methods for working with, and repairing aluminum wiring.

  • ALUMINUM WIRING REJUVENATION

    We have what we call our “Aluminum Wiring Rejuvenation” solution.

    Replacing all the receptacles and switches in the home, with ones that are rated for aluminum wiring (not available at any BIG BOX stores), and treating all other connections at light fixtures and junction points with an antioxidant, and replacing wire connectors with ones that are rated for aluminum.

    It is interesting to note that the acceptable wire connection methods that are used in Ontario and Canada as well as many of the US States are not acceptable in other US States.

    This probably poses a policy issue with International Insurance Companies.

    The reality is however – that the Electrical Inspection Department of whatever jurisdiction has the final say as to what is acceptable.

  • REWIRING

    Rewiring would be the best long term solution for eliminating problems associated with aluminum wiring, but it also represents a substantial investment. This may be the best solution in some cases. Like with K&T wiring, we would like to see a Government Grant / Rebate / loan to eliminate Aluminum wiring, especially since they allowed the use of it in Canada in the first place.

    Aluminum in itself is not a dangerous material to be used for wiring – the terminations and connection points are where the trouble begins.

FAQ

When Was Aluminum Wiring Used in Homes?

During the 1960s to the mid-1970s, a period when copper prices were exceptionally high, many residential builders turned to aluminum wiring for new home construction. This change was driven by cost considerations, and it led to the widespread use of aluminum wiring during that era. However, it's important to note that aluminum wiring has some unique considerations and potential issues, so homeowners with older properties featuring aluminum wiring may want to consider safety assessments and potential updates.

How to Identify Aluminum Wiring?

To recognize aluminum wiring in your home, examine your electrical panel and inspect cables in your basement or attic. Look for cables marked with "AL," "ALUM," or "ALUMINUM," as these labels indicate the use of aluminum wire. While visual inspection can provide clues, it's not the most reliable method. For a thorough assessment and enhanced safety, it's advisable to engage an electrician to inspect your home. They possess the expertise to confirm the presence of aluminum wiring and ensure your electrical system is secure.

What are the Issues associated with Aluminum Wiring?

Aluminum wiring exhibits certain drawbacks when compared to copper. It's softer and more susceptible to damage during installation. Additionally, aluminum expands more when heated, which can cause wires to loosen under screws and overheat. Unlike copper, aluminum forms an oxide layer that's a poor conductor of electricity, further increasing the risk of overheating. These properties have led to safety concerns with aluminum wiring in homes, making it important for homeowners with aluminum wiring to be aware of potential issues and take appropriate precautions to ensure their electrical systems remain safe and reliable.

What is aluminum wiring, and why is it a concern in homes?

Aluminum wiring refers to electrical wiring in which aluminum conductors are used instead of copper. It can be a concern in homes due to some inherent properties of aluminum. Aluminum is softer than copper, making it more prone to damage during installation and more susceptible to loosening when it expands and contracts with temperature changes. Moreover, aluminum forms an oxide layer that is a poor conductor of electricity, increasing the risk of overheating and potential fire hazards. Homeowners with aluminum wiring should be aware of these issues and take precautions to ensure electrical safety.

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416-800-5523

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905-856-2772

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905-460-6055

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Unknown Unknown
Unknown Unknown
2023-10-17
Angie was great on the phone explained everything in detail and pleasant to speak with. Steven and Sal came by within a day, fixed everything up quickly, and the price was fair. They were extremely polite and easy to work with. I will 100% be recommending to everyone I know in the area who needs an electricians help. What an absolute blessing it was to find Hi-Lite. Thank you again! -Vinny
Krystina Samaroo
Krystina Samaroo
2023-09-05
Great service!
Chelsey Bennett
Chelsey Bennett
2023-06-27
My partner has been using this company for years and now that we share a place, I’ve seen them at work on a few projects. They really stand out as professional, careful, and thorough. I’d recco them 100% to anyone in need of a reliable electrician!!
David Alleyne
David Alleyne
2023-06-27
Highly recommended. These guys are great. Professional. Friendly. Flexible.
John
John
2023-03-23
Matthew and Steven were pleasant to deal with and we were pleased they disposed of the old lighting and fixture and didn't leave it for us.
john farres
john farres
2023-01-05
Great job with the EV charger installation. Steven took great care in making sure the job was done right!
MariaLuisa Schirripa
MariaLuisa Schirripa
2022-12-31
My husband and I would recommend this company for any of your electrical needs! They are VERY professional, fast and understanding. Luciano is awesome to speak to and his son Steven is also great. They came quickly and made us feel like a priority. Our problem got fixed and they were all extremely nice to deal with. We will definitely use them again when we need an electrical issue fixed!
Mohammad Albaroudi
Mohammad Albaroudi
2022-10-01
Great and professional service, highly recommended..
Anvar Zargarov
Anvar Zargarov
2022-09-02
We contacted Hi-Lite Electric Inc because of potentially life-threatening electrical issues we are having in our apartment that have been neglected and ignored by the property management. Luciano offered helpful advice as to how to approach the situation and find a solution; as well as providing the right contact information. He seemed like a genuine, empathic person with solid morals and was glad to help out without charging us anything due to genuine personal concern. I am very grateful people like him are still around. Thank you.

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