Advice Needed on House Rewiring Planning

Joined
6 Oct 2016
Messages
5
Reaction score
0
Country
United Kingdom
In the process of doing up the house (3 bed,terraced) from top to bottom in stages (whilst living in it) - just had a new kitchen/dining room extension done which included new wiring and consumer unit - however the rest of the house (downstairs/upstairs lights and sockets) minus these rooms needs to be done, alongside eventual refurbishment.

The plan is for living room/downstairs landing to be refurbished next. Can I realistically/sensibly ask an electrician to re-wire this (only) without touching the upstairs circuits alongside the builders. Any thoughts on this are appreciated - once this is done, we will then move upstairs and do this.

I understand access to the upstairs carpets are required to access the downstairs lighting circuits - if we are having all the ceilings/lights re-done, would access to upstairs floorboards still be needed?

Would love to hear experience from some of the pros/consumers who have this done.
 
Sponsored Links
Joined
28 Jul 2006
Messages
20,912
Reaction score
2,195
Location
Oxfordshire
Country
United Kingdom
This may not be as simple as you may think.

Many houses have solid ground floors, so all the wiring for the downstairs power - that's lighting, sockets, kitchen etc is all in the floorspace below the first floor, so all of that will need to be accessible. Usually, all of the wiring, including upstairs sockets, is in this space-with the exception of the upstairs lighting-which lives in the loft.

When rewiring, it is best to use the existing cable runs for the new wiring, rather than weaken the structure by drilling new holes.

You would have to ask the electrician if what you want/hope for can be achieved.

Personally, I would walk away (no run away) from someone who wants to live in a house while it is being rewired.
 
Joined
27 Jan 2008
Messages
19,520
Reaction score
1,858
Location
Llanfair Caereinion, Nr Welshpool
Country
United Kingdom
It is down to cost, my mothers house already had the kitchen and wet room rewired, I had my mother in a EMI home, and it was uncertain if she would be let out again, if she stayed in then I needed a rewire to rent the house out, if she came out I needed a rewire to protect her when she did silly tricks like put an extension lead in a bowl of water as she thought the red neon was the socket going on fire. Estimates varied from £2500 to £5000 the problem was working out what was going to be done for the money, I would get comments like we will wire the garage for free, and no one would give me an itemised estimate so near impossible to compare prices.

Any rewire will involve some compromises, where the problem lies is in deciding the level of workmanship your willing to pay for. I made some errors, and the electrician made some errors, he also did some good things like using the old conduit so reducing the plastering left for me.

My son rewired his own house, in the main wiring between floors was done by removing the ceiling as he needed it re-doing anyway, he ended up putting in cables which were never used, specially the LAN cables, he thought he would need a LAN socket at every radiator to control the eTRV, but when it came to the crunch you can't get hard wired eTRV's you have to use wireless types. I did not fit enough sockets, and after the re-wire I must have fitted another 6 double sockets before my mother came home. I also did not run in enough TV cables, that was not included in the rewire.

So I have two RCD's and four RCBO's fitted, and the house is at least safe, even if some sockets are in wrong place, and not enough of them.

For my son he installed all cables while the ceilings were down, but many were not connected to anything, so for 6 months he had 4 sockets at the consumer unit, one went to caravan, one to up stairs, and one to down stairs, and one to washing machine all with extension leads. I got called to blown fuses more than once when son at work and daughter-in-law had done something daft. It was not what I would call safe, and I would hope no commercial electrician would agree to wiring up a house in that way. Today all finished and every mod con. Does things like auto put the central heating on when he is 10 miles from home. Server in the loft has all the kids films on, etc.

The problem he found was plan kept changing, which room was going to be kitchen, which room was going to be living room, so some cables still needed re-routing. What you need is a very detailed plan, exactly where each socket is going to be, I said I wanted 4 sockets in a bedroom, what I didn't expect that all 4 would be together with no sockets on the wall with cupboards on, reason was easy, cupboards stopped them lifting the floor boards, the other bedroom again all sockets in one area, this time because they needed to be 3 meters from the shower, can't really blame them.

They also sneaked in some surface trunking, I agreed surface trunking in corners of the room to reduce re-decoration, but stipulated non in centre of walls, moved a wardrobe after they had finished, and there was a run of trunking horizontal 3 foot high.

My problem was it all needed to be complete for mother coming home. Out of around 10 firms I tried only two could do it in the time scale. Now tables were turned when son was working as a sole trader, he had a few jobs on the go where he was doing a bit at a time, my rewire was done in 6 days with two men most of the time and 6 at the end to finish off, really electricians should not be working alone, they do need some one to help thread wires, so looking at say 7 days, so in real terms that means smallest split is 7 parts, really looking at no more than 4, so first fix one area could be done at same time as second fix in another, but to wire a room at a time is really a non starter. It could be split left hand side then right hand side, but likely you will lose power to some rooms for a few weeks. I had to move one of mums freezers to my house, and be able to turn other one off.

I said my son had a caravan, that was mainly because of heating, the family lived in the caravan in the garden for around 4 months, but no heating for a week in summer may be OK, in winter very different, he never intended to still be in caravan in the winter, but he was.
 
Joined
11 Jan 2004
Messages
38,417
Reaction score
1,794
Country
United Kingdom
Personally, I would walk away (no run away) from someone who wants to live in a house while it is being rewired.

Really? Wow! I have rarely had the luxury of an empty house to rewire. In fact, I would not need all the fingers of one hand to count them all.

When I moved from S/E to PAYE, all our rewires were occupied and we had to get all boards/ carpets down and a minimum number of lighting and power points working at the end of each day.
 
Joined
28 Jul 2006
Messages
20,912
Reaction score
2,195
Location
Oxfordshire
Country
United Kingdom
Not my bag. Good for you if you can do that.
There must be a cost and time penalty for the customer though?
 
Joined
11 Jan 2004
Messages
38,417
Reaction score
1,794
Country
United Kingdom
Yes, of course it costs more. But as S35 says, not many want to or indeed are able to vacate the premises for the duration.
 
Sponsored Links
Joined
6 Oct 2016
Messages
5
Reaction score
0
Country
United Kingdom
Thanks for replies. I fully understand and expect to pay a premium as I'll be living in the property whilst the rewording is going on.

My question was more is it possible to just rewire a living room/downstairs landing first - and then do the upstairs later? As the downstairs is being gutted out, floor to ceiling shortly - I want to take advantage of the access.
 
Joined
28 Jul 2006
Messages
20,912
Reaction score
2,195
Location
Oxfordshire
Country
United Kingdom
As I said, it will depend on the house construction and what level of disruption you can enjoy.
Only your electrician can tell you that.
In any event, the floors above will certainly need to come up, or the ceilings downstairs could come down...?
 
Joined
6 Oct 2016
Messages
5
Reaction score
0
Country
United Kingdom
As I said, it will depend on the house construction and what level of disruption you can enjoy.
Only your electrician can tell you that.
In any event, the floors above will certainly need to come up, or the ceilings downstairs could come down...?

Yes - this is what I suspected, thank you.

I'm hoping given downstairs ceilings will be coming down anyway, this would mean access to upstairs floors is not needed. (Fingers crossed)

As kitchen/dining room/downstairs bathroom is on a separate ring and on the new consumer unit - I'm hoping I can just tell sparky to do what he wants with the rest of the downstairs bit - and the work will be relatively self-contained!
 
Joined
12 Mar 2015
Messages
33
Reaction score
0
Location
Glasgow
Country
United Kingdom
The company i work for do occupied rewires in one day it can be done 2 sparksa labourer and a plasterer so if its a single floor it could be quite straight forward for some companies
 
D

Doggit

My question was more is it possible to just rewire a living room/downstairs landing first - and then do the upstairs later

Yes you can. As long as a bit of preparation is done to take a supply for the upstairs wiring during the downstairs work, then you can split the job in two. Work out where the upstairs sockets will start, and leave enough wire looped under the upstairs floorboards, but you'll need to leave a lot more spare for the lights, as they'll need to go up to the upstairs ceiling. And will there be any other services that need to go back to the CU, that need to be done in one complete length such as a shower. Everything will then get connected when you complete the upstairs work.
 
Sponsored Links
Top