Can You Rewire A House Without Removing Drywall? (Find Out Now!)

Ossiana Tepfenhart
by Ossiana Tepfenhart

Back when I first started to write for this site, I was floored to find out that most homes need to be rewired every 20 to 30 years. It made me hit the pause button. I mean, how can you rewire a house without taking it entirely apart? Can you even do it without the removal of your drywall?

It is potentially possible to rewire a house without removing drywall, but it is not very probable. In many cases, it’s possible to rewire a room without major damage to the panels by drilling through the drywall and pushing new wiring through it.

To a point, you will have to plan for some minor drywall removal if you want to rewire your home. However, it’s not a complete nightmare.

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Is It Possible To Rewire A House Without Removing Drywall?

Yes and no. When electricians say that it is possible, they mean that you don’t have to remove entire portions of your drywall to get access to your wiring. This process preserves the integrity of the house and ensures that you don’t have major wall repairs. It’s tricky, but it’s doable.

While I want to say that it is entirely doable, the truth is that the vast majority of homes will still need to damage a smaller portion of their drywall in order to rewire it.

Does Rewiring A House Without Drywall Removal Cost More Than Traditional Rewiring?

Believe it or not, most electricians no longer do the whole “remove entire slots of your wall” part of rewiring a house. It used to cost too much and it also used to make too much of a mess. Generally speaking, most electricians will do what they can to avoid drywall removal at all costs.

Regardless of how much drywall you should expect to remove, the price tag will remain the same. Most electricians will charge between $4,000 to $15,000 to rewire a home. If you have a larger house, then it is pretty certain that you will have to pay more.

How Do You Rewire A House Without Removing Drywall?

Glad you asked. We have a whole article on how to rewire your home without removing drywall her e. You’re welcome!

Do You Need To Move Out If Your Home While It’s Being Rewired?

You can if you want to, and it’s actually ideal to do so. Having fewer people walking around means you will get more space for the pros to work. This leads to fewer days on the job. However, you don’t have to.

It takes anywhere from 8 to 12 days for a typical rewiring project to be done. If you want to be absent for all of that, just be advised that hotels are pretty pricey. It’s often best to pop in just to see how progress is going anyway.

Are There Any Downsides To Rewiring Your Home This Way?

There are a couple of minor issues that you may run into if you want to rewire your home without a serious impact on your drywall. Here’s what you need to be aware of:

  • It still will damage your drywall to a point. Sorry, some things are unavoidable. Thankfully holes can be patched and repairs are going to be minimal.
  • You might have to leave some of the dead wiring in there. If you are persnickety, then you might find this to be kind of a major issue. Thankfully most of us find it to be an “out of sight, out of mind” issue.
  • There is a chance that you might miss a wire or two. This is highly unlikely, but it can happen.
  • A ton of planning has to happen in order to ensure that the job is done correctly. This means that you may have to look at your home’s old plans, find out the full electric grid of the home, and also find the key points that make it possible to remove and replace wiring. This can take at least one to two weeks to accomplish.
  • You will also need to update the charts showing the wiring outlines of your house once you’re done. This is something typically done by the professionals, but you may need to make sure that the records are well-kept for the next buyer.

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Related Questions

How can you tell if you need to rewire a room?

Rewiring is something that should happen every 20 to 30 years, regardless of your electrical functions. It’s maintenance. However, it may be possible that you need to hurry things up if you notice frequent short circuits, breaker trips, and flickering lights in a room.Assuming that you know your breaker box is alright, chances are that the wiring is to blame for the electrical malfunctions. It’s best to call a qualified electrician to make sure that you get the full scoop on what you should do.

How are home rewiring costs calculated?

This can vary, but it basically boils down to parts and labor. Your electrician will take a look at the size of the home and give a rough estimate of how much wiring it will take to rewire everything. Then, they will give you a rough estimate of the work hours it’d take to do it.Most electricians have programs that streamline the estimate costs for them. They’ll present it in a square footage or “per linear foot of wiring” form. If anything ever seems off, it’s best to ask your estimator.

Is it legal to rewire your own home?

Honestly, this all boils down to what your local building codes say. In most of the United States, you have the right to rewire your own home as long as it can pass inspection once you’re done. However, this is increasingly not the case in major cities and counties prone to fires.Before you decide to make your first drill into your drywall, it’s best to make sure that it’s legal to do it in your area. Reading building codes or calling local offices can help lead you to the advice you need.

Ossiana Tepfenhart
Ossiana Tepfenhart

Ossiana Tepfenhart is an expert writer, focusing on interior design and general home tips. Writing is her life, and it's what she does best. Her interests include art and real estate investments.

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