Residential & Commercial Electrician

Aluminum Wire Replacement: Ensuring Safety in Older Calgary Homes

If you live in an older home in Calgary, you might be unaware of a hidden hazard lurking behind your walls—aluminum wiring. Predominantly used in homes built between the 1960s and 1970s, aluminum wiring was once a popular alternative to copper due to its cost-effectiveness. However, as many homeowners and Calgary electricians have discovered, aluminum wiring poses significant safety risks.

The Risks of Aluminum Wiring

Aluminum wiring is more susceptible to issues than its copper counterpart. The metal itself is softer and more prone to damage when handled, making it a less reliable choice for a home’s electrical system. Here are some specific risks associated with aluminum wiring.

Fire Hazards: One of the primary concerns with aluminum wiring is the increased fire risk. Aluminum wires can oxidize when exposed to air, leading to poor connections that generate heat. Over time, these hot connections can ignite surrounding materials, posing a severe fire hazard.

Connection Failures: Aluminum expands more than copper when heated, causing connections to loosen over time. These loose connections can cause arcing, where electrical current jumps through the air between gaps. Arcing can produce sparks, potentially igniting a fire.

Recognizing Aluminum Wiring

Homeowners should be aware of whether their homes contain aluminum wiring. Identifying this type of wiring involves inspecting electrical outlets, switches, and the electrical panel. Aluminum wiring is often marked with “AL” or “ALUM” on the outer jacket. However, hiring professional Calgary electrical contractors to conduct a thorough inspection is advisable for safety and accuracy.

The Replacement Process

Replacing aluminum wiring with copper is a significant but worthwhile investment for the safety and longevity of your home. At Gravity Electrical Solutions, we offer three options to address aluminum wiring issues.

1.Full Replacement

A qualified Calgary electrician will assess the extent of aluminum wiring in your home, develop a plan, and replace the aluminum wiring with copper, either by rewiring individual circuits or the entire home for maximum safety and reliability.

2.AlumiConn Connectors

For a less invasive solution, we install AlumiConn connectors, which provide a safe interface between aluminum and copper wiring, preventing oxidation and loose connections that can lead to overheating and fires.

3.Pigtailing with Approved Connectors

This method involves connecting short lengths of copper wire to the ends of aluminum wires using approved connectors. This creates a safe transition, reducing the risk of overheating and improving overall electrical safety.

After implementing the chosen solution, our electricians will ensure all connections meet current safety standards, thoroughly test the electrical system, and provide certification that your home’s wiring complies with all safety codes.

Benefits of Copper Wiring

Switching from aluminum to copper wiring offers several benefits:

Increased Safety: Copper wiring is less prone to oxidation and overheating, significantly reducing the risk of electrical fires.

Durability: Copper is more durable and less likely to break or degrade over time, ensuring a longer-lasting electrical system.

Higher Conductivity: Copper has higher conductivity than aluminum, improving the efficiency and reliability of your home’s electrical system.

A Small Investment for Peace of Mind

We understand the importance of maintaining a safe home at Gravity Electrical Solutions. Our team of experienced Calgary electrical contractors is committed to providing top-notch service and ensuring your home’s electrical system is secure. If you suspect your home has aluminum wiring or have encountered any electrical issues, don’t hesitate to contact us for a comprehensive inspection and expert advice.

By addressing the risks associated with aluminum wiring, you can protect your family and property for years to come. Trust Gravity Electrical Solutions to handle your aluminum wire replacement needs with professionalism and care.

Contact us today for a free estimate!