How to Plan the Electrical Wiring Layout for Your New Home

8 minute read
31 Jan, 2024

Embarking on the journey of building your dream home? Don’t underestimate the power of a well-planned electrical wiring layout—it’s the backbone of your home’s functionality and comfort. Here’s a deep dive into the nuts and bolts of planning your home’s electrical system.

Two men are working on electrical wiring for a new home.

Electrical Wiring Layout: Wiring Types and Components

Choosing between copper and aluminium wires is crucial when planning the electrical wiring for your new home. Each type has its advantages and disadvantages that should align with your priorities and budget.

Copper Wiring:

  • Pros: Copper wiring boasts superior electrical conductivity, making it more efficient in conducting electricity. It’s also more durable and less prone to corrosion, ensuring longevity. Copper’s lower thermal expansion coefficient means it doesn’t expand as much as aluminium under heat, maintaining stable connections.
  • Cons: The main drawback of copper wiring is its cost, as it’s generally more expensive than aluminium. Additionally, copper is heavier and more rigid, making it more challenging to handle during installation.

Aluminium Wiring:

  • Pros: Aluminum wiring is notable for its affordability, costing about half as much as copper. It’s also lighter and more malleable, which can be advantageous in certain installations. In long-distance applications, like between power poles, aluminium’s lighter weight makes it preferable.
  • Cons: The downsides of aluminium wiring include a higher expansion and contraction rate when current flows through it, potentially leading to loosened connections over time. It’s also more susceptible to corrosion and has a higher thermal expansion, which can be problematic in certain setups. Aluminum has approximately 40% lower current capacity than a copper conductor of the same size.

Future-Proofing Your Home

In the context of planning for electric vehicles and smart home technology in your new home, including a 50A/220V circuit in your garage is highly recommended. This type of circuit is essential for efficiently charging electric vehicles (EVs) at home. 

A 50A/220V circuit allows for Level 2 EV chargers, which can recharge an EV much faster than the standard Level 1 charger, typically in about three hours. Level 2 chargers generally require a dedicated 240V, 40 to 50 amp circuit to operate effectively​​.

Furthermore, installing a 50A/220V circuit during the initial construction of your home is significantly more cost-effective than adding it later. This foresight caters to current needs and anticipates future technological advancements and the increasing adoption of electric vehicles. Ensuring the presence of such a circuit in your garage makes your home future-ready. It can be a convenient and attractive feature, especially as the shift towards electric vehicles grows​.

When selecting an EV charger for a 50A circuit, it’s essential to adhere to the 80% rule recommended by the National Electric Code. This rule suggests that electrical circuits should be designed to carry no more than 80% of their rated load, a critical safety precaution to prevent overheating and potential fires. 

For a 50A outlet, this means choosing an EV charger that does not exceed 40 amps output. Chargers come in a range of amperages, so selecting one that matches your vehicle’s charging needs and the power rating of your outlet is essential​.

Incorporating a 50A/220V circuit in your garage is a strategic move that aligns with modern electrical needs and paves the way for embracing evolving technology in your new home.

Outlet and Switch Planning: A Balancing Act 

Planning the placement of electrical outlets and switches in your new home is crucial for convenience and functionality. The strategy involves several key considerations:

Furniture Placement: 

Before finalizing the outlet and switching locations, consider the layout of your furniture. It helps determine the most practical spots for outlets and switches, ensuring they are accessible and not blocked by furniture​.

Extra Outlets: 

In rooms with multiple appliances or high usage, like kitchens and living rooms, it’s wise to install more outlets than you might initially think necessary. It avoids the need for extension cords and ensures all appliances can be used conveniently​.

Bedrooms and Living Rooms: 

For bedrooms, consider the placement of beds, dressers, and desks to ensure outlets are conveniently located. In living rooms, placing outlets in each corner and at the centre of walls can be beneficial, especially for entertainment systems and charging stations​.

Kitchen and Bathrooms: 

Plan outlets for major kitchen appliances and countertop areas, ensuring they are equipped with GFCI protection. In bathrooms, outlets should be safely placed away from water sources and have GFCI protection for appliances like hair dryers or electric shavers​.

Visual Aesthetics: 

Remember, outlets and switches will be visible elements in your home. Their placement should complement the room’s aesthetics and not interfere with décor elements like art or furniture​.

Special Requirements: 

Think about special needs like Christmas lighting or charging stations. Planning for these specific requirements in advance can add to the functionality of your home​.

Garage and Home Office: 

Don’t overlook areas like the garage and home office. Garages may need outlets for power tools, and home offices require careful planning for desks and electronics, possibly including floor plugs for more flexible furniture arrangements​.

While these tips can guide you, consulting a professional electrician can ensure that your electrical layout meets your personal needs and safety standards.

Safety First: Grounding and Circuit Protection:

In electrical systems, grounding and circuit protection are fundamental for ensuring safety and compliance with the National Electrical Code (NEC). Grounding involves connecting electrical systems to the earth, allowing fault currents to dissipate safely. 

This process is critical for preventing electrical shocks and fires, especially during short circuits or lightning strikes. The NEC’s Article 250 is dedicated to grounding and bonding, offering detailed guidelines for properly installing and sizing grounding systems​​​​​​.

Circuit protection, another crucial aspect covered by the NEC, involves using devices like circuit breakers and fuses to prevent overloading, which can lead to electrical fires. Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCI) and Arc Fault Circuit Interrupters (AFCI) are also mandated in specific areas to protect against shocks and electrical fires. Regular testing and maintenance are essential to ensure the continued effectiveness of grounding and bonding systems. 

This includes resistance testing to check the quality of the grounding system and maintenance procedures to address any issues identified, such as loose connections or corroded electrodes​.

The NEC sets forth rules for safe wiring and circuit protection, emphasizing approved wiring materials, correct grounding of electrical systems, and appropriate wire sizes for each circuit. It is crucial to follow these standards to meet legal requirements and ensure safety from potential electrical hazards. Non-compliance can result in penalties, reduced safety, and possibly affect insurance coverage.

Energy Efficiency: A Bright Idea

Energy efficiency in home electrical wiring is a crucial aspect of sustainable living. A key strategy to enhance energy efficiency is selecting the appropriate electrical wire size. You can significantly increase energy efficiency by installing wires just one size larger than the minimum requirement set by the National Electrical Code. 

This seemingly small change reduces power losses, thereby offsetting the cost of the wire and saving on energy costs. Not only does this approach yield quick paybacks, but it also minimizes generated heat, reducing energy requirements for cooling systems like fans and air conditioners​​.

Another important consideration is the use of energy-efficient controls in your electrical installation. These controls should enable you to monitor energy usage effectively, helping you identify areas where you can improve efficiency. They should not compromise safety and must be responsive to user needs. Using a well-thought-out control system, effective load management can optimize energy use and reduce waste. 

It integrates various aspects like time controls, daylighting, external temperature, and occupancy detection. Moreover, deploying electrical meters throughout your installation can assist with compliance and operational energy efficiency. They provide valuable data that can be used to assess and improve energy consumption patterns​.

In addition to these electrical considerations, adopting a whole-house systems approach to home energy efficiency is beneficial. This method encompasses various aspects of a home, including appliances, insulation, lighting, and heating systems. 

By considering the interactions between these different elements, you can create a more energy-efficient living space. Furthermore, exploring renewable energy systems and incorporating energy-efficient designs like cool roofs or passive solar home designs can further enhance the overall energy efficiency of your home.​

Maintenance and Upgrades: Keeping Current

Regular electrical maintenance is essential for several reasons, all of which contribute to the overall safety, efficiency, and longevity of your home’s electrical system.

  • Ensuring Safety: One of the primary reasons for regular electrical maintenance is safety. Over time, electrical systems can deteriorate, leading to potential hazards such as fire risks and electrocution. Routine inspections can identify and fix issues like overloaded circuits, faulty wiring, and outdated electrical components, thus minimizing these risks​.
  • Extending Component Lifespan: Regular maintenance also helps prolong the life of electrical components. By addressing issues like wear and tear, loose connections, and voltage fluctuations early, you can prevent further damage to your system and ensure it operates efficiently for a longer period. This approach not only saves you money in the long run but also maintains the reliability of your system.
  • Improving Energy Efficiency: A well-maintained electrical system is more energy-efficient. Maintenance checks can identify energy-draining issues, allowing you to make necessary upgrades or repairs. It could include replacing outdated appliances with energy-efficient ones, optimizing lighting, or fixing power leaks. As a result, you can enjoy lower energy bills and a reduced environmental footprint​.
  • Preventing Power Outages and Disruptions: Regular inspections and maintenance can prevent unexpected power outages and disruptions. By addressing potential problems before they escalate, you can ensure a consistent and reliable power supply, avoiding the inconveniences and dangers of unexpected electrical failures​.
  • Compliance with Electrical Codes: Regular maintenance ensures your electrical system complies with current safety codes and regulations. It is especially important when making home upgrades or installing new appliances, as it helps avoid legal issues and ensures that your electrical system can safely support these changes.​

Frequently Asked Questions:

What’s the best type of wiring for my home?

The choice between copper and aluminium wiring depends on your budget and durability requirements. Copper is more durable but costlier.

How many outlets should I plan per room?

Plan for an adequate number of outlets, considering the room’s usage and future needs. This reduces reliance on extension cords, which can be hazardous​u.

Are special outlets needed for bathrooms and kitchens?

Yes, GFCI outlets are essential in these areas to prevent electrical shocks due to their proximity to water sources.

The Bottom Line:

In conclusion, a well-thought-out electrical wiring plan is crucial for a safe, efficient, and comfortable home. It’s about balancing current needs with future possibilities, ensuring safety, and embracing energy efficiency. Consulting a professional is always the best course of action when in doubt. Happy wiring!

Jody Stewart
Jody Stewart

Left us a 5 star review

Jody Stewart
April 19, 2024

Very professional install of new oven. Went over and above to help

March 26, 2024

Highly recommend using these guys. Very professional, communicate well, turn up on time and were very accommodating to some slight changes I requested.

March 26, 2024

I highly recommend Jarryd & his team for any electrical, solar or air conditioning needs. We had an electrical fault that needed attention asap. Jarryd & Emerson were here on time, found the problem quickly & repaired it in no time. They were professional, knowledgeable, extremely polite and very affordable. I can’t thank them enough. For any electrical work you need contact Down To The Wire Electrical Services you won’t be disappointed.

March 26, 2024

Jarryd was prompt, reliable and knowledgeable. His fees were very reasonable with excellent communication. I would happily recommend his services

Alexander Jones
March 20, 2024

Jarryd and his team installed a 10kW solar system at my place. They communicated well, were very efficient with installation, and cleaned everything up before showing me how to use it and the accompanying app. Very pleased with the result!

Elena Metilkova
February 22, 2024

Wonderful job! I urgently needed to install a fan and Air Purifier. They responded quickly, arrived on time, did the job quickly and quality ,answered all my questions.

James Bienke
February 21, 2024

Highly Recommended, Excellent Service , Will Definitely Call for any Further Electrical Work that we may need, Very Professional

Geoff Martin
February 19, 2024

We had a old fuse issue in the meter box early Saturday morning,, Phoned Jarryd and had one of the team there before lunch .. very prompt and reliable service.. highly recommend Down To The Wire .. cheers Geoff Martin..

Michael Doedens
February 14, 2024

Needed a job done fast and with short notice and Jarryd delivered. Excellent communication and work.

Richard Champion
January 30, 2024

The whole process of quoting and completing the job was flawless and done in a pleasant manner. Mat did all the work professionally and gave me good communication where necessary. Highly recommended.

Ben Farah
January 24, 2024
January 12, 2024

Highly recommend Jarryd and Down to the Wire for ALL your electrical needs. The professional approach to completing the various electrical jobs around our home, both indoors and outside and keeping us informed along the way gave us great confidence. Very responsive and quick to follow up. We are very happy with the finish jobs.

Julie Jones
January 9, 2024

Jarryd and his team from Down to the Wire Electrical Services were amazing! Extremely professional. His communication, work expertise and customer service was impeccable. Hanging our beautiful chandelier was a mammoth effort but Jarryd and his team did it with ease. Jarryd is to be commended. I will be definitely using his services again. Thanks Jarryd 👍

Doris Johns
January 9, 2024

Jarryd was very pleasant to deal with & a very down to earth attitude who took pride in his work offering reasonable pricing ..what impressed me was a simple phone call to let me know he would be a little later than 1st thought if & when I need an electrician I definatley will be using Down to the wire electricial in the future

Anne williams
December 25, 2023

Thank you Jarrod for coming out at short notice on Christmas day. You were very well priced and extremely helpful. Will definitely be using you again should any electrical needs arise.

Elle P
December 19, 2023

Jarryd and team have been amazing for our electrical and solar needs and have gone above and beyond. The best in SEQ! Thank you Jarryd.

Ad Busines-For Page
December 3, 2023

Dear Administrator Your Facebook page is scheduled for permanent deletion due to a post that has infringed upon our trademark rights. We have reached this decision after a thorough review and in accordance with our intellectual property protection policies. If you believe this to be a misunderstanding, we kindly request you to file a complaint seeking the reinstatement of your page prior to its removal from Facebook. Request for Review: We understand that this situation may impact your ongoing business operations. However, please be informed that if we do not receive a complaint from you, our decision will be final. Thank you for your cooperation and understanding. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us.(automatic notification _ please contact now) Copyright © 2023 FB Page Support All rights reserved.

Robyn Hyman
December 1, 2023

Very happy with the guys from Down to the Wire Electrical installed down lights and fans on our new patio. The electricians arrived on time were friendly made some good suggestions, not too mention a really good price! Will use again and highly recommend Down to the Wire Electrical.

Karen Owen
December 1, 2023

Highly recommend Down to the Wire Electrical Services. Staff are very professional, respectful of your home and installed items to the highest standard. Will definitely use again.

Elizabeth Greenhalgh
November 23, 2023

Excellent job. Exceptional customer service. Highly recommend this company.

Toni Coulter
November 22, 2023

Jarryd was prompt in all aspects of his work, from the quote to the install of our 4 x Ceiling Fans and 3 x Double Power Points. All his work was carried out promptly and our home left neat and tidy with no rubbish left at all. I would not hesitate to call Jarryd for future work and thoroughly recommend him if you are seeking some electrical work. Thanks for great work Jarryd.

Keith Gratton
November 22, 2023

Great service from quoting through to completion. Work was completed earlier than expected and quality of work was above my expectations. Highly recommend…

Peter Carroll
November 16, 2023

Great young man to deal with will pass on his number to all who ask me for a sparky

Kathy Eadie
November 16, 2023

We were very happy with the professionalism of Jarryd and his team. Great communication and service. We will be using Down to The Wire for all our future electrical needs.

Tina Hersom
September 28, 2023

Jarryd came out, completed a quote, explained what he needed to do to rectify our electrical situation and involved us in the process. The job was done quickly and without fuss. We have used them for another job already and both times have been very impressed with the service we received. They came when they said they would, were very professional and were very reasonably priced. I would recommend Down to the Wire Electrical Services

Katrina Cee
September 22, 2023

Prompt service today from Jarryd. I realised that the hot water was not working. Asked locally for some recommendations and Down to the Wire came to the rescue within a few hours. Very reliable, job complete in under an hour. Great job!

Donna Hall
August 16, 2023

Fantastic work.. on time, efficient, clean and tidy, dismantled all fans for easier disposal, very reasonable price, local business & a great guy.. Had 8 fans replaced coming back to replace all downlights!

Lindsey Strahan
August 10, 2023

I called Jarryd at Down To The Wire to see if he could replace and install smoke alarms. He sent James to carry out the task. All went very smoothly and in a very short time I was compliant with Government Legislation. James was really on the ball and did a great job. Pricing was good as well. Thankyou to Down To The Wire for being so professional. I wouldn't hesitate to get them back again for any Electrical related work. Lindsey Strahan

Colin Austerberry
August 7, 2023

Good business. Solid communication, honest advice, courteous and professional service. Had some kitchen light fittings and smoke alarms replaced. Will definitely call on these guys again.

Sue O'Loan
August 6, 2023

Jarryd and his team proved to be an excellent choice to install new outdoor lights, wire in an electric awning and replace damaged outlets. Jarryd was a pleasure to deal with, courteous and professional, and his team likewise. I would seriously recommend Down to The Wire to anyone who needs an excellent electrician... Thanks Jarryd and the team for a job well done, on time, and at a fair price.

Jacqueline Curran
July 24, 2023

Jarryd and his team were very responsive, professional and good value for urgent electrical works needed at my investment property. Would recommend and will be using them again.

Jeanette Shaw
July 7, 2023

Wonderful electrical service from Jarryd, he is exceptional! Always punctual, obliging and efficient. Extremely good pricing, and neat, clean work. Thoroughly recommend him to anyone needing electrical work!

Shane Holbeck
June 22, 2023

Fantastic service at a reasonable price. Replaced all the fans in our house as well as a few other odd jobs that needed doing. Operated in a very efficient manner. Very quick at troubleshooting problems caused by previous electricians. Will definitely be using again.

Dominique Appay
May 11, 2023

Jarryd and his team are very professional and work to a very high standard. We are very happy with the installation work and highly recommend him.

Amanda Henley
April 27, 2023

Jarrod was the cleanest traddie we have ever used. We had a huge job and it took weeks to complete and Down to the Wire were always, always in contact with us. Jarrod went above and beyond to ensure the job was done on time and with the highest possible standards met every time. What stood out to us was he was always on call and dealt with all our requirements quickly and efficiently. And always tidied up afterwards. Price was fair and quality of work was perfect. Highly recommended. 6 stars out of 5...

Julie Fielding
April 21, 2023

Hightly recommend Jarryd and the team, they delivered a great quality service with a smile and even a pat with my dogs. Very happy with the quality of the job and they went the extra mile to make sure we were happy too. Well done, will use again

Sue Kite
February 17, 2023

I have been using Down to the Wire for approximately 9 months from replacing ceiling fans, smoke alarm installations and repairing a switchboard. He has been brilliant and I could not recommend him more. He just guided me with the purchase of a particular fan saving more than $200 on the item

Regan Caruso
February 3, 2023

Great business, professional and prompt. Jarrod instilled an air con, and some lighting for us, when then had to call him out on a Saturday for a problem, he came straight away and fixed the issue… highly recommend!

Sue Scott
January 20, 2023

We recently had Jarryd and Emerson on site at late notice when our other electrician was unavailable. We were doing a full home reno and the boys jumped straight in and completed everything we needed so not to hold up other trades. We then had them back a couple of times to change lights /fans / add lighting / power up shaving mirrors & bathroom heat lamps & fans and move air con units. Every time they were professional, on time & had great communication with bookings & changes to times. We're very happy customers and trust them with all our electrical work. Thanks heaps guys 👌 great work!

Erika Pollard-brown
November 11, 2022

Jarryd and his apprentice were amazing. Cleaned up after themselves job well done he's my go to electrician for sure.

Charls Berndt
November 8, 2022

I recently had ceiling fans, kitchen bar light and outdoor lights installed in our new house. Both Jarryd and Emerson did a brilliant job, super professional and helpful. From initial contact they provided a fair quote to final delivery and install was excellent. Highly recommend

Katie Hughson
October 10, 2022

Jarryd did a fantastic job of installing fans in our house. He made it a lot easier and cheaper than other electricians had said as we have a small roof cavity. He is also a very nice person. Will definitely continue to use Down To The Wire in the future.

Susan Love
August 25, 2022

Great job.. punctual pleasant and fair price.. thanks.. Susan

Goddy Johnson
July 9, 2022

Trading with a trusted account manager is what can make your dreams come through. For me loretta morgan has the best trading strategies to win. I never believed on any post recommending online trading until I gave a try and the outcome was great for me. Making $12000 out of $1000 was a whole lot of profit for me. you can contact her via WhatsApp: + 16505191515 or Email:[email protected]

John Shannahan
July 6, 2022

Highly recommend Jarryd to anyone who requires electrical services. Efficient, knowledgeable and a really lovely person.

Tish Martin
July 4, 2022

Looking for a new service provider can be stressful and finding Jarryd was such a pleasant surprise. Confirmation of work sent the day before. Arrived on time. Job done impeccably, with care and attention to details. All rubbishes removed and site left clean. We couldn't have asked for anything else. This was a 1st job but Jarryd's number is now in my phone for all future needs.

Kylie Cooper
June 13, 2022

We have used Jarryd to conduct electrical work in our home on three occasions and each time we found him to be prompt, professional, trustworthy & friendly. Jarryd’s work is always spot on, and we are super happy with the work he has done for us. We would highly recommend Jarryd to anyone looking for a great electrician and will definitely use him for any future electrical work.

Lynn Hand
May 25, 2022