If you have aluminum wiring in your house, you run the chance of a fire and may have difficulties acquiring homeowners insurance. Many houses built between 1965 and 1972 were wired with aluminum instead of copper.
What’s the problem with aluminum wire?
Here are a few points about aluminum wiring.
- Aluminum wiring starting being used in single-family homes as a replacement for copper wiring around 1965.
- Between 1965 and 1972, over two million homes were wired with aluminum.
- Many homes caught fire and people died as a result of aluminum wiring causing fires.
- Pre-1972 homes wired with aluminum were 55 times more likely to reach “fire hazard conditions” than homes wired with copper.
- Aluminum wiring failed at the connection points, such as splices between wires, connections at outlets, circuit breakers, switches, lights, etc.
- In 1972, the formula for aluminum wiring changed, making it a much safer product. Aluminum wiring was used in single-family homes for a few years after that but was completely phased out by the mid-’70s.
The problem with aluminum wiring is that it expands and contracts at a high rate, which can lead to loose connections. Connections between aluminum and copper can also cause oxidation, resistance, heat, increased expansion… you get the picture. All of that can lead to a fire.
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