Was your home built between the mid 1960s and late 1970s? If so, it may have aluminum wiring.
Some insurers will not provide or renew insurance coverage on these homes without an inspection by the Electrical Safety Authority (ESA). Ask your insurance company for their requirements. You may need to repair or replace the wiring, and provide a copy of the ESA Certificate of Inspection to the insurer.
If you need to hire someone to do the repairs, by law it must be a Licensed Electrical Contractor. Make sure you hire one familiar with aluminum wiring. The Licensed Electrical Contractor should first assess the job and take out any necessary notifications with ESA. The ESA can then review the electrical work. Be sure to get a copy of the ESA Certificate of Inspection from your Licensed Electrical Contractor for your records.
Myths and facts about aluminum wiring
Myth: Aluminum wiring was recalled as a known fire hazard.
Fact: Aluminum wiring itself is safe, if properly connected and terminated without damaging the wire. Any devices used must be approved for use with aluminum wire.
Myth: Aluminum wiring is no longer used for interior wiring systems.
Fact: The Ontario Electrical Safety Code allows the installation of aluminum wiring. It is used for interior wiring systems in residential homes, and structures such as large commercial and industrial feeders. Electrical distribution companies also use it throughout their distribution systems. This includes the supply service cable to most residences.
Aluminum wiring is safe if properly connected and terminated according to the Ontario Electrical Safety Code and the manufacturer’s instructions.
Learn more about aluminum wiring in residential installations.