Rewiring a house - what to add?

We’ve just bought an old house which needs a complete electrical rewire (rubber insulation - yay!). While doing that, we intend to install some Cat5, an interconnected smoke alarm system, and TV aerial cabling.

What other cables might be a good idea to lay down while we have all the floorboards up etc.? Is there anything that might be a good idea for later “connected home” fun and experiments?


Aren’t old houses fun (not!)? Cannot think of anything to help you (I guess I could suggest phone wire :smile: ) , but I wish I had been able to put radiant heat in the flooring in our old thing. But, that assumes you live somewhere that needs heating. Hope you have something better than 2X8’s for floor joists. There are places in on our floors that a 13 pound cat can make it creak! Well, she’s a fat cat anyway, she should only weigh about 8 pounds. I wish you success and hope you still have hair (assuming you have hair) and sanity (assuming you are sane, taking on an old house might bring that into question, but hey, I couldn’t have afforded anything else) when your project is done.

But, keep us informed as to what you are doing. I am curious, and am thinking of extra wiring in my home.

We did think about underfloor heating; our builder said that without significant insulation underneath we’d be spending half our money heating the ground rather than the house, and to add insulation would mean raising all the floors quite a bit to fit in insulation and heat pipes.

And yes, we are going to be adding phone wire too :slight_smile: Thanks!

Don’t forget mycroft.


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I’m not a builder, but I think what would be needed most would be reflective insulation, which would be about 1/4" thick, which could be put within the joists right directly under the pipes. We put reflective insulation (basically thin layer of bubble wrap with aluminum foil on both sides) in our attic, and what a difference that made. Very noticeable in the summer. We could have the house set at 75°F but it would just feel hot during the day. After that insulation, that hot feeling was gone.

I am in the process putting Cat5 into my house, part of a never ending project. You can use that for phone wiring too, RJ-11/12 will plug right into an RJ45 jack. Saves you some work and makes it all more versatile too. Also check out USB, VGA, and HDMI adapters for Cat5 wiring. If your runs are long consider using actual Cat 5E or even Cat 6 cable but my longest cable is 25 feet so there’s no reason to spend extra.

I have 3 Mycrofts on order :slight_smile: But it doesn’t require any special wiring AIUi. Perhaps an Ethernet jack on the kitchen worktop?

Phone wire because my wife still prefers a phone with better voice quality which doesn’t run out of battery and is pretty much 100% reliable.

I realise Cat5 can be repurposed for phone etc. Maybe the versatility is a good reason to put in more than I was originally going to…

I was thinking of wiring in some low voltage cables and putting some phono plugs on the end for speakers.
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