Wiring in Old Houses

So this is just more of general advice question, I picked up a couple of dimmers a couple of weeks ago, planning on installing in a house I’ve just moved into.

My first attempt didn’t go quite as planned, schematic wise it wasn’t an issue, I simply can’t get the switch to fit within the box. My house was built in the 1920’s and so I’m working with not only more shallow boxes, but bx cabling with cloth and rubber insulated wiring. So the cables are taking up more room than modern wiring and the cloth and rubber is fairly brittle, so too much interaction causes additional deterioration of the wiring.

Starting to think I’ll end up having to get the wiring swapped out at some point to modern wiring to even make use of the dimmers.

So just more of a general question on how people generally make these larger devices work in older houses.

It seems like most of the older houses have been upgraded to ROMEX at some point. I’ve only seen one post refer to knob and tube. :man_shrugging:t2:

In some ways I miss the character of an older home, but having modern wiring has been awesome when wanting to upgrade switches.

Depending on if you have the cavity depth, you can get deeper boxes. You’ll have to cut the old box out with a rotary tool. You should be able to get it out with damaging the sheetrock, plaster, etc. Worst case, get an oversized switch cover. At that age, the box may have just been nailed from the inside of the box, so you just have to cut the nails. Otherwise, you’ll have to cut through the flange.

Google old work bx box. I’ve seen some as deep as 3 1/2".