Read This Before Running Electricity to Your Workshop or Outbuilding


Read This Before Running Electricity to Your Workshop or Outbuilding

The electrical system inside of a home is similar to that of an outbuilding in that it is a collection of wiring and components that deliver power to every outlet and fixture in the house. An electrical system that is not adequate will not supply enough power to keep everything working without encountering problems on a regular basis. Upgrading a system far beyond the needs of the residents could be unnecessarily expensive and wasteful. Homeowners will need to look at several areas of the house to determine the adequacy of the electrical system. A home that requires more power will need help from a professional electrical service to upgrade capacity and potentially install more panels, circuits or even outlets.

The same holds true for providing electrical service to any outbuildings or workshops on your property. On average the cost of wiring a brand new outbuilding can range anywhere from $2,500 – $3,500 depending on the size of the building and your specific needs. Don’t forget to plan for the possibility of adding on to your existing building. This may cost you a little more to run wiring for future use. It’s considered a good investment to wire an outbuilding, especially if you intend to make use of this space frequently and if there is any possibility of a move in your future. Wiring in outbuildings can increase your resale value of your home significantly.

If you ever have any questions about how you are going to get things done, it is critical that you start with a good electrical contractor, but even the most advanced contractor simply cannot resolve all of your issues if you are not certain what needs to be done. You have to take some time and look at all of your options. This means that most people are going to have to analyze their needs carefully and decide specifically what they would like completed and how they intend to use the outbuilding.

Professional contractors agree: more lighting is better. You can always decide what lights you want to turn on, but if you need more light than what is installed you’re in trouble. They also agree that you can never have too many outlets. Contractors suggest installing at least as many outlets in your outbuilding as you would in a similarly sized room or rooms of your home. You want the outlets to be conveniently located but still adhere to safety codes. Keep in mind, it’s much easier and more affordable to have wiring (lights and outlets) installed initially than to have an electrician come back to upgrade an installation.

The type of electrical installation you will need will depend largely upon the primary use for the space. If you intend to use your outbuilding as a workshop, you’ll need to consider installing 220-volt receptacles for your larger tools. You also may need to consider additional lighting options as well as fan placement depending on where you live. If you have an office space in mind, you will want to strategically place outlets and internet cable connections for easy access where you are planning on placing your desk. A craft studio will need good ventilation and additional wiring for things like kilns and such. These are all important points to consider when planning your wiring and discussing this plan with your electrician.

Planning ahead and preparing for a project like this is one way you can save a little money in the long run. Talk about your needs versus wants for your outbuilding’s wiring with your electrician and ask about ways you could possibly get what you want for the price of what you need. There may be some things that will be easy to add later on that you can possibly forgo now. That’s always an option. Make certain you choose an electrician who is licensed and strictly adheres to building codes. It would be unfortunate to go through all of this work only to find out it’s not up to code.

If you are in need of any type of electrical repairs or installation, call Penna Electric. Our knowledgeable, experienced staff will get your electrical work done right the first time every time.