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Basement Wiring doesn’t need to be the #1 challenge

Basement wiring and electrical is one of the jobs during renovation that usually requires a professional electrician.

Basement wiring

Finished Basement wiring

     There are many reasons the homeowner could decide to renovate the basement:

  • The house is new with an unfinished basement
  • Basement has never been finished
  • Dated house with not so professionally finished basement 

    Often homeowners do some of the work themselves to stay on budget or hire a contractor to do it all. In any case, some parts of the work should be left to a licensed contractor, plumbing, drain, basement wiring, structural changes are some of them. If the homeowner decides to do the electrical part, GCCElectric pros can assist in this case as well, we can come over for a consultation, if necessary even more than once. In Ontario, the homeowner is allowed to do all his work but at the same time, he is responsible for the permits, inspections, and 100% code compliance, in the case of electrical the ESA permit, and inspections. 

Benefits of having the electrical part of the basement renovation done by GCCElectric:

1) Lighting with all new LED technology has evolved in recent years. LED Potlights spaced properly can make a significant difference. The new super-slim LED potlights that replaced the old style halogens are bright and give the basement a new and clean feel. Consider the potlight layout before the basement wiring starts.

    There are many types of LED light systems that in combination will give the basement a unique feel. Planning and design is very important so all the wires get in the right places during the basement wiring stage. Of course, GCCElectric pros are here to help.

Basement wiring

2) The use of outlets in the basements is very different today. With tablets, laptops, cell phone chargers constantly in use, sometimes workout equipment, and entertainment electronics, the need for safe outlets is greater than ever. 

3) with the new Electrical code, many things changed, many devices require a new Combination type ARC Fault breaker which increases the fire safety but unfortunately the cost as well. 

4) Smoke and Carbon monoxide detectors in combination with strobes are code now as well.

5) Some basement renovation contractors are worried about delaying the project working with a certified electrician so they may “neglect” to mention these facts to the homeowner. Always ask for the license or the license number of the electrical contractor and verify it on the ESA website. 

6) Properly locating the controls, switches for lighting, using 3-way switches where necessary will later make the use of the space a lot more natural and effortless. 

7) Many basements today are being turned into a separate secondary housing unit (rental or family), which many times requires a separate service and hydro-meter, electrical panel. In the case of a separate unit, the wiring is often required to be completely separated from the main unit. Secondary units have their own kitchen section, bathroom, and often laundry. In this case, the code rules relating to these parts of wiring apply as well. 

8) Usual stages of basement wiring and electrical:

  1. Demolition (if required )
  2. Framing or framing updates
  3. Plumbing and HVAC Rough-in  
  4. Electrical and wiring Rough-in
  5. Floor, Dry-wall, plastering, painting
  6. Electrical finishing, plumbing HVAC finishing.
Finished Basement wiring
9) Access to important utility and future-proofing. Careful planning can pay off later after the basement is completely finished and access is needed to existing utilities or some changes are required to kitchens, furnace areas, etc. It is highly recommended to leave ceiling, even wall areas accessible in furnace areas, under kitchens if possible, junction points where pipes for plumbing and gas meet, valves, ceilings around exterior walls where decks, pools, hot tubs are located or could be possibly added later.
    In planning stages, we ask many questions so we can suggest these future-proofing ideas before you start the project.
    Some areas around furnaces can be left completely open, some if exposed could have some variations of modern removable tile ceilings. That way if any access will be needed in the future, it won’t require extensive demolition and repair work.

10) If needed upgrade or replace your electrical panel before the basement gets finished. Basements add circuits and load to your electrical panel. If your panel is dated, replace it now, new panels add more circuits and the new breakers are more reliable.

    If you’re adding a kitchenette with electrical stove, you have a hot tub, pool, or planning to buy an electric car that requires charging and your current panel is 100AMPS, it could be time to upgrade to 200AMPs. 

Basement wiring

Do your research or ask a certified experienced electrical contractor for advice. We work with many basement renovation companies with easy scheduling and minimal schedule disruptions.

Contact us with any questions, we’re here to help. 

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