Do I DIY a Rewire or Not

Antique lamps are lovely items, but they are not always easy to maintain. 

Over time, you may have any number of issues. You may be introducing a new bulb to the lamp and find the lamp is not equipped for the new component. You may find that the insulation rubber has worn off the wires. Electrical faults may also occur that burn the wires making replacements necessary.

If you find that your lamp is having any of these problems, a rewire may be in order. The question is, should you rewire yourself or not? Read on to find the answer.

To Rewire or Not to Rewire

If you look on the internet, you will find several articles on how to rewire a lamp. So, yes, a DIY rewire is definitely doable. 

In addition, most table lamps do not draw dangerous levels of electricity. All the same, no one wants to get shocked, right?

But more than the danger factor, rewiring a lamp may take some amount of troubleshooting as well as electrical equipment you may not own. Taking all of this into account, it just may be the safest, easiest and even least expensive route to take your lamp into a professional. 

How Much Does Rewiring a Lamp Cost?

Rewiring a lamp is pretty inexpensive. Prices will vary depending on where you live, the type of lamp you have and the work you need done, but here is a general estimate of what you can expect to pay. 

  • New Socket: $30
  • Rewiring a lamp with a plug: $20
  • Rewiring a lamp with a plug and retro cord: $35
  • 10” custom shade: $70 and up

These prices are generally affordable and may be worth it to have to avoid any safety issues and other complications that may arise. 

Safety Tips for Rewiring

If you choose to rewire your lamp, make sure you are safe. Here are some tips that will be helpful.

  • Shut off the power at the service panel to the light fixture you’re working on. The lamp should be unplugged. As a safety measure, test the fixture with a voltage tester to make sure it’s shut off. 
  • If you remove a fuse keep it with you so it doesn’t accidentally get replaced when you’re working. When you shut off a circuit breaker, tape over the breaker, close the panel door and attach a sign to it that says “Do not touch!” That way no one will turn it back on accidentally. 
  • Use fiberglass or wooden ladders, aluminum and metal may conduct electricity. 
  • Use tools with insulated handles to reduce the chance of electric shock. 
  • Don’t touch metal pipes while making electrical repairs.

While it may be best to take your lamp into a professional, rewiring it yourself is an option. If you decide to take on this task, make sure to take the proper precautions. Good luck getting your lamp back into shape.