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Aluminum Wiring Repair & Copper Pigtailing

Aluminum wiring issues aren't that new of a problem.

Concerns are higher than ever with the increased number of owners "flippin homes" or doing lipstick reno's without paying proper attention and care to the practices required to terminate Aluminum wiring and install new devices safely.

Until the mid 1970&s, homes in Victoria were often wired using aluminum wiring instead of copper wiring because it was cheaper at the time. Homeowners of these older homes are finding that many insurance companies will not open a new policy, or even renew and old policy, unless the wiring is inspected and either repaired or replaced entirely. This is due to the fact Aluminum wiring frequently overheats, in turn causing conductors to expand, leading to loose connections, arcing, melting and sometimes fire.

With aluminum wiring there are two options:

Aluminum Wiring Replacement

This option requires completely removing all the old aluminum wiring throughout the house and then replacing it with copper cable. This is the most expensive option, however it is also the most effective option (aluminum isn't a problem if it isn't in the home anymore) and will also increase the value of your home.

Aluminum Wiring Repair or Copper Pigtails

To repair aluminum wiring in your home, our technicians add short strips of copper wiring to the ends of your homes existing aluminum wiring with a special marrette which prevents oxidization from occuring between the two different types of wire. Technical Safety BC (BC Safety Authority) has said that copper pigtailing performed by a trained and licensed Electrician is a safe alternative to completely replacing aluminum wiring.

Why Copper Pigtailing vs Aluminum Wire Replacement?

Copper pigtailing is a cost-effective alternative to completely removing your old aluminum wiring and replacing it with copper wiring. Copper wiring can be prohibitively expensive for a homeowner to replace fully on an existing aluminum wiring system wheras copper pigtailing provides a happy medium, giving you copper wire’s durability and peace of mind without incurring the cost of a full aluminum wiring replacement.

Signs your aluminum wiring has problems

  • Lights that Flicker and Dim and you can't trace problem back to a bulb
  • Electrical outlets and light switches that don't work
  • Circuit breakers or fuses that trip for no apparent reason
  • Unusual smells, sparks or smoke coming from outlets or switches
  • Unexplained static or buzzing from your tv, stereo or computer

If you should notice any of these problems, have a licensed Victoria electrical contractor inspect your home's wiring as soon as possible to determine the best and safest solution to rectify the issue.