View Full Version : Rewiring post war home - before or after new plasterboard walls and ceiling?
13th Jan 2012, 04:52 PM
First time poster and near enough first time renovater so forgive me if I'm asking too easier to question.
I have just bought an old post-war home, my first house - solid hardwood - but from the building inspection, I was advised that I should review the wiring of the house, possibly rewire it all. As part of the renos, I will be taking down the old masonite walls, replacing that with plasterboard and plasterboarding over the asbestos ceiling.
Any thoughts on the order that this should occur in, especially if it's easier for the sparky to rewire when the old masonite is down or if they then have to come to install the switches, fittings etc...
Any advice would be welcomed!!
13th Jan 2012, 05:45 PM
It's easy for them to rewire with no wall coverings- they can do a 'rough in' for the wires. Then you plaster the walls, and then they come back and complete the job (switches, powerpoints etc). It will take much longer if you do the wall coverings then then ask them to rewire!
13th Jan 2012, 05:49 PM
Cable goes in after you take the wall sheet of then they come back after the plaster board and painting is done to fit
the switches powerpoints etc.. What's the asbestos ceiling? fibro? if your doing a major reno and the place is not being
lived in now might be a good time to have it removed.
13th Jan 2012, 06:01 PM
You can never have too many powerpoints. Ask the sparkie to also run cable for internet/TV to as many points as you can afford.
When the plasterboard is up, paint around where the switches and points are going to be attached. This saves heaps of time cutting in (painting) around the switches once thay are on the wall.
13th Jan 2012, 07:55 PM
Thanks gpkennedy - great tip about the paint job and the need for extra cabling too.
@goldie1 - it is a pretty major reno job and we won't be living in it to start. Our thoughts about just plastering over the asbestos is the fact that there is loose insulation in the ceiling which (we think) will all come crashing down if we take the asbestos sheeting off. Guess we're just cutting corners...Is it important to get rid of the asbestos do you think?
13th Jan 2012, 11:10 PM
The insulation is probaly full of nasty black dust and (maybe) asbestos fibres.
Polyester Insulation is really cheap and easy to install I'd replace the lot.
13th Jan 2012, 11:21 PM
Electrical - Definitely get the electrician to do the work when the lining is off the walls. This will be heaps faster and cheaper - it's how they wire new houses. As others have said, they will put all the cables in place first, then come back once the plasterboard is in place to install the power points and switches.
Asbestos - Removal is not that important assuming it's in good condition. What DOES matter is that there is no drilling, sanding etc of it now or in the future which would release fibres into the air.
There are two parts of the body where asbestos can seriously harm you (death). First and the best known is in the lungs where it eventually kills. And the other one is your genitals (seriously) - so make sure your hands are very well washed before going to the toilet if there's any chance of asbestos contamination. But note that just touching it with your hands etc isn't harmful - just keep it out of your lungs and out of your pants. This is the advice I have been given by more than one source, including a licensed asbestos removalist.
14th Jan 2012, 08:26 AM
Problem with the ceiling is you will proberbly have lots of new penatrations in it for lights, fans, smoke detectors etc.
If you cover it and electrician comes in to fit new downlights say, uses a hole saw to cut through the new plaster then
through the old fibro and gets covered in asbestos dust. I would remove it before you start which would enable you
to get rid of all the old crap in the ceilng and make the rewiring easier
14th Jan 2012, 03:25 PM
If you have old loose fill and asbestos ceiling then remove both since you are doing a major reno with no-one living in the house and it will get rid of that as a problem and make it so much easier and safer for you and everyone else working on the houses now an in future. You save nothing really by leaving the loose-fill and ceiling lining in place and create future potential problems. Loose-fill can be vacuumed up or manually collected and asbestos must be removed as per regs - use masks and proper safety gear in any case.
14th Jan 2012, 04:16 PM
Thanks for all the advice guys. Looks like we'll be removing the AC ceilings and the loose insulation then!
Any thoughts about problems with tiling straight over the AC wall sheeting in the bathroom...?
14th Jan 2012, 05:08 PM
If you're gutting the whole house you may as well gut the bathroom too- saves you paying for another asbestos removal job later!
15th Jan 2012, 03:36 AM
Totally what others said. Add wall plates for switches n gpos - think 'structural backing' for electrical fittings. It is a real value add to say 'rewired, no asbestos'. In for a penny? In for a pound!
15th Jan 2012, 09:40 AM
wow, I am on the final stretch with the same job.
While you are ripping out the linings turn the power off to everything. I had three types of wiring in the house. One in steel conduit, a twin core and exposed earth and your standard three core. I was not to keen to touch the steel conduit just in case. I found two GPO's that ran under the house and had the eleco leave these on and disconnected everything else. I had portable fluro's and felt safer.
Tell your neighbours what you are doing. I wore a sperm suit (disposable overalls) and dust mask. They dobed me into the council for removing asbestos even though I had not touched the stuff. (planned to after all the masonite and cedar stripping was removed.) Quick call and all is ok. Keep your reciepts for when you dump the asbestos too, just in case. no money in the walls :(
After you have removed the lining... things to consider... Allow for double switching in areas where you breeze through or have access to at two points. Don't forget to add your external lights. I ran two circuits for GPO's and the last of each went into the kitchen, that way I can have high draw on two appliances on without tripping the breaker. Your fuse box will probably get updated, so allow for all that other stuff that may come in eg aircons, larger stoves, RCD's. We updated the plumbing as well, with all the plumbing consealed in the walls instead of the external pvc siliconed into the weatherboard look. We fitted a new HWS. The split system solar type, and the plumbing for this runs into the walls. Air cons were also allowed for with plumbing internal.
the walls need to be checked for plum before you fit plasterboard. Hardwood that is old is a bitch to screw into. I used 25mm screws as any longer and I would shear the heads off. Make sure you brush all your studs and battend so your glue stucks.
Lack of bracing the in the frame work was also evident.
gees I could go on.
Its been three years now and just finished the kitchen and the bathroom. What a relief... now just the built ins and the flooring and the skirting and the doors and the ......
15th Jan 2012, 10:00 AM
If you do have it removed keep all the reciepts for when you sell the house. It won't be to far of I believe when all houses
being sold will require an asbestos register with the sale contract.
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