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Tinned Copper Wiring


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Yeah, it's tinned. Look closely at some of the bends in the panel (or elsewhere) and you'll likely find some cracked and brittle insulation leaving conductors exposed. And, no, I didn't enlarge the photo so I can't say for sure. However, I see it in almost all panels here of similar age.

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Is this tinned copper wiring? I believe it is but just want to be sure. (1940 House) Are there any concerns with tinned wire that I should be aware of?


John Callan

Yes, it's tinned copper wire. The concern is that the old rubber and cloth insulation will not be in very good shape after 70 years of service. It'll be hard and brittle in places where it's been hot, like above ceiling light fixtures - similar to the problems with knob & tube wiring, most of which was also tinned copper.

Those breakers are the real problem, though. (Square D, yes?) They're very primitive and probably don't provide much in the way of reliable protection.

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