AK Electrical Services InstallationsAt AK Electrics, due to our location and love for the magnificent buildings in and around the borough of Richmond and Twickenham we have naturally found ourselves specialising in refurbishment and period properties. All our electricians have an enormous pride in their work as well as our clients house and contents, they all carry the necessary tools to ensure a high quality job and keep a site clean and tidy. With all buildings, but especially older buildings it is vitally important to choose an electrical company who not only knows the electrical regulations inside out but also about the building regulations. With most electrical installations about 10% is only ever seen with the remainder being hidden in the fabric of the building. This is why the building regulations are just as important, for example once a joist is cut too much, bricks drilled unnecessarily or windows drilled the effect is non- reversible or very expensive to repair, worst case this can lead to long term effects like joist sagging and damp problems. For a list of our satisfied clients and feedback reports go to either, CheckaTrade Trustatrader
Advice on changing a fuse box.
Replacement a Consumer Units, Distribution Board (DB) or Fuse Boxes.
A brief explanation of regulations and procedures:
Firstly the British standard wiring regulations BS7671 states (in no direct way!) that any electrician replacing an old distribution board (DB) is then responsible for every circuit re-energised. Therefore every circuit has to be fully tested and be deemed satisfactory to a minimal safe standard as well as basic earthing, primary fuses and supply characteristics.
This can either be done before the board is replaced or after. The latter approach is very risky for both client and electrician as any immediate dangerous condition found must be put right at someone’s time and expense, or disconnected from supply.
If done before the best route is to have an Electrical Condition Report carried out to verify the condition of the entire installation before hand. This report is valid for up to 5 years providing no work is carried out and can be used when selling the property, maintenance and to quote for or carry out any works including replacing DB’s.
When changing a DB it is also a legal requirement for domestic property owners to make sure the work is carried out by a qualified electrician who is also part p registered (domestic installer) so all works will be safe and done to BS 7671 standards, certified and registered with building control (this is done on behalf of the client by the contractor).
Once the DB is replaced and all circuits energised a 3 or 5 page Electrical Installation Certificate will be issued as per BS 7671, then the contractor has a period of time to register the works online where a Building Control Certificate will be issued and posted directly to the property owner.
With regards to the type of DB you have installed there are 2 basic types, either split load dual RCD boards where each RCD protects half the circuits in the property, this can cause nuisance tripping and not advised for multiple circuits or computer circuits. The better and unfortunately more expensive DB’s have individual RCD protection of each circuit to cause minimal disruption during maintenance, minimise nuisance tripping and make fault finding quick and easy.
Advice on testing and inspecting
Testing and inspecting should only be carried out by persons qualified for obvious reasons, always make sure the inspector has City & Guild qualifications C&G 2391 and belong with a quality governing body who then inspects their work.
Testing and Inspections, now know as ECR’s (Electrical condition reports) and formally (pre 2012) know as PIR’s. ECR’s are very important to verify the current safety of an installation. They are generally required by Mortgage companies before lending, Insurance companies and Letting agents before letting.
It also highly recommended (although not necessary) to have a ECR carried out before having an old fuse-box modernised if dangerous conditions exist or insulation resistance of circuits could cause nuisance tripping of the new RCD’s.
The report is a very detailed set of inspection and tests and for example a 3 bedroom house generally takes 3-5 hours to complete depending on various factors, age, condition, accessibility and number of accessories, labelling of circuits, whether previous paperwork is available and if circuits can be turned on and off without disrupting anyone.
More information can be found on the Electrical Safety Council’s website about Electrical Condition Report’s.
Please phone if you require a quote for an ECR giving details of how many fuse-boxes / consumer Units / distribution Boards you have, number of circuits, number of bedrooms and bathrooms and if there are any sub-mains / remote meters (mainly in flats and large houses/commercial properties).