Help with old electric system in house

Can this be converted to a regular outlet strip? Many of the plug parts broke and we need more outlets! We have stucco walls and this is where the electric comes in the living room from the basement. Does anyone know what it would take to change this (and price)? Also, do they make the snap on plug parts anymore? It's like a vinyl/rubber strip that goes around the rooms and is painted over.
electric system old house help, electrical
  8 answers
  • Hannah V Hannah V on Sep 08, 2014
    @Woodbridge Environmental may be able to give you some insight on this!

  • Carole Carole on Sep 08, 2014
    If your electrics are old they may need checking by a qualified electrician. Given that wiring can get chewed by rodents, safety standards are changing all the time and wiring is not made to last forever, I would get an electrician to check it and advise you. It may not be cheap and you may find that re-wiring the house and including more outlets if you do so is the best option. This would be cheaper than a DIY job that could see a house fire occur due to faulty electrics. I would leave this type of work to the professionals. Many a house fire is caused due to faulty or old electrics.

  • You need to purchase Wire Mold. This material comes in two types metal and plastic. Follow this link at the HD site and watch the short video of the system and its install. This is what is used for surface wiring now. What you currently have is no longer being made and is unsafe as the wires are not properly protected.

  • SS SS on Sep 09, 2014
    Thanks everyone for your comments!

  • SS SS on Sep 13, 2014
    Thank you for the suggestions but this doesn't answer my question because I don't know what to call the plug part to see if they make them anymore and if the box on the right is where the big wire from the box comes into the room and could this be cut off and something else attached other than the strip on the wall? I see electric on walls where brick is and it's a thin metal strip with the outlets sticking out a couple of inches.

  • The current wire system you have is no longer made. It is unsafe and not UL approved. If you have a wire coming out of the wall there is a metal box with a special connector that will allow it to fasten the wires safely, then new wires will need to be run along the wall. I suggest you hire an electrical contractor if your having a concern about how this should be done. Even if you only hire them to do a short section to get you started. Then you can add to the system to complete the wall. One thing I am concerned about is the type of wiring you have in your home. Typically these wire systems that your showing were connected to a Knob and Tube system. These wire systems are obsolete and dangerous to connect to. In fact insurance companies no longer insure homes with this type of wiring if they find out the house contains it. Please be safe and have the wires looked at by a pro.

  • SS SS on Sep 13, 2014
    Thanks, that helps. I would never do electrical work myself! Definitely will contact an electrical contractor. I do not believe it's a knob & tube system, which I saw was pre 1945. The house was built in the 50's, and we just had a whole house generator installed, and the electrician didn't mention any problems. Thanks again for your help!

  • Lindcurt Lindcurt on Jan 17, 2015
    My mother in law lives in a home built by the WPA in 1948. We have had to get creative with many upgrades on old plumbing and electric. The house is built on a slab with concrete block walls. The plumbing is under the slab. When her kitchen and washing machine sewer lines were needing to be replaced, the plumber recommended running the new one across the baseboard through the dining room to connect with the sewer. Not an attractive feature. We built a 2" x6" box to fit the length of the room to go over the pipe. We put the baseboard on the box and painted it all white. The other baseboard around the room were redone in a similar manner. We even added some electrical outlets on one of the other walls.