Many homeowners are in need of re-wiring their garage at some time or another. Here at Neighborhood Garage Door Service of Riverside, CA, we want to share with you some information about this type of project. Please read this BEFORE you re-wire your garage.
Reasons to Re-Wire Your Garage
There are many reasons that you may want or need to re-wire in your garage. This can include the need for more outlets, hard wiring appliances, or to resolve bad wiring. Depending on the type of project that you are doing, it is best to have a certified electrician handle this job.
Whether you are doing a smaller job that you can handle, or you are able to take on a larger task, here are things you will need to get started.
Rewiring a Garage Requires 8 Steps
Before you tackle a re-wiring project, you will need to work through these 8 big steps.
To begin with, you need a full plan of everything that needs to be replaced. Evaluate what your electrical needs are. Take note of the outlets that are already in your garage. Look to see if there are already electrical boxes in place that are undeveloped. On newer homes, there are sometimes extra boxes in rooms that have plates over top.
If you are going to need to install new work boxes, then you will need to determine where to make the holes in the walls. Make sure that in your planning that you do not drape or span open space with the wire cable.
It is also important to note that the Energy Education Council requires that every outlet in a garage must be a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI). This is to protect you from possible electrical fires.
It is important that you get all of the necessary permits from your local area. Check the electrical codes to see what you are in need of. You can get these resources for free online from the National Electric Code website. During this process, someone will come out and look at your wiring and breaker panel to make sure things are in compliance.
3. Call an Electrician
Even if you do not want an electrician to do the entire job for you, it could be a good idea to bring one in for advice. You might be able to save a bit by asking them to help you complete the job once you have gotten started. Make certain that whoever you call is licensed and bonded.
4. Proper Tools
Depending on the type of re-wiring project you have in your garage will determine which tools you need to have. Some of the typical tools you will need to have on hand for these types of jobs include:
- Drill, drill bits, spade bit, screwdriver bit
- Cable cutters
- Lineman’s pliers
- Needle-nose pliers
- Wire cutters
- Wire strippers
- Razor knife or utility knife
If you do not have access to these tools already, you can see if your local hardware store has a program that allows you to borrow or rent tools. Sometimes, you can rent the tools you need for a much lower price than purchasing. This may be another reason to bring in a certified electrician for part of the project.
5. Equipment Needed
Make sure you have a wiring schematic put together. You can have a professional do this for you, or do it yourself. With this schematic, you will know the number of boxes, wire, and conduit that you’ll need to purchase.
Other pieces of equipment that you may need include:
- Wire nuts
- Electrical tape
- Switch cover plates
- Receptacle cover plates
- Electrical cable
- Cable connectors
- Light switches
- Junction boxes
It can be helpful to purchase extra of these items to make sure you have enough on hand. That way, you won’t have to run out during the project to get what you need.
6. Start The Wiring Process
Once you have the plan, tools, permits, equipment, and wiring schematic, you can start the re-wiring job. Make sure that you do this carefully. You will need to cut the breakers to the entire garage for your safety.
It is important to unplug your garage door opener just to be on the safeside. Unplug any electronics or things inside of the garage.
Install all of the outlets, switches, and other wiring that you are planning to change out. Do not cut the power back on until you have covered all wires.
7. Bring Back a Professional
Once you have completed the job, it is a good idea to bring back a professional to inspect your work. They can let you know of potential hazards and determine if you have done the job properly. Since you will have to have your work officially inspected, they can let you know if there is any part of the project that won’t pass inspection.
8. Call an Inspector
It is up to you to make sure that the final inspection takes place. Your work must be approved by a local inspector. Contact them as soon as you feel confident that the work is completed.
Re-wiring your garage is an involved process that takes a lot of time and planning. Do not hesitate to contact a professional if you become overwhelmed by the process.