I hope everyone had a great festive break with the ones nearest and dearest.
I’ve just had an EICR (Electrical Installation Condition Report) carried out on a purpose-built flat constructed in 2008 located in South East and the report came back unsatisfactory with several observations requiring remedial work -see screenshot below.
I’m hoping this forum could share their input on 2 areas:
The validity/scope of the EICR with regards to C2 observation against item 6.181 x smoke detector and 1x heat detector are out of date and require replacement to not impede level of fire protection. From speaking with another Electrician, these may be out of date, though this is out of the scope of an EICR. At most, this should be noted as a C3.
Validity of observation 4.14 Circuits do not have 30mA RCD protection for their additional protection where required. Should this be classified as a C2 code?
I have queried the first point with the vendor. Regardless, I will replace the smoke and heat detector myself to save myself a few £, though I would be keen to get your thoughts on both items on whether these should be C2 codes or different.
Thanks in advance!
Unfortunately, I cannot offer any advice as electrics are not my thing, except to say that 12 months ago my 3 year old purpose built flat failed an EICR for not having the RCD protection. This made me realise that when renting the safety bar is higher than it would be if you bought a property to live in.
I have another property which is roughly the same age as your own. It has a plastic consumer unit and that was given a C3.
Thank you for your insight, Chris.
Out of interest, how much were you quoted/paid for the remedial work?
From the summary of my report (below), they are just relocating the fuses under an RCD circuit for £54+VAT.
I was quoted £245.00
I think it was 2 circuits that needed RCDs and additionally there was a fault on the power circuit that they had to trace and rectify. A wall socket was found to have a loose connection.
Could you post a photo of the consumer unit ?
I’m a spark btw
Also google electrical safety council best practice guide issue 6 and read that
Thanks for taking the time to respond.
I’ll take a look at the best practice guide, later today
This is the best pic I have at the moment.
Could you please post a better picture where I can read the circuit labels?
Sorry, but this is the best I can share for the time being, though I will be able to share a better version in the next week or so.
I looked through ‘electrical safety council best practice guide issue 6’, in particular the classification codes. I’m confident that the latter two items are C3 and not C2 codes. I’m awaiting a response from the Electrician on this matter.
Again, thank you for following up and offering to help. I will share a better-quality photo, once I can.
My case seems to be “moving a circuit to (the) RCD side”, which leads me to believe that my quote of £54 +VAT is the cost of labour.
Regarding the smoke and heat alarms - they are mains powered so I WOULD give those a C2 .
If he C3’s them, would you actually replace them?
there is no way a 3 year old flat could be built without RCD protection for all circuits.
Am I right in thinking a circuit board of plasic is ok with RCD ? Remember many years ago metal boards went to plastic as “safer” ,now back to metal !! Wonder if in my lifetime they will revert back to plastic
It was built in 2019 so getting on for 5 years now. I originally stated the remedial work was to install RCDs. On checking the invoice it was actually SPDs (Surge Protection Devices). If RCDs are totally different from SPDs I apologise for the error. I don’t really understand electrics🤔 even so, I was surprised at the time that a 3 year old property would fail. This lead me to come to the understanding that the safety threshold must be higher for a rental property as opposed to if I chose to live in the property myself.
There was also another issue. A fault of some description on the ring main which had to be traced and rectified. He attempted to show me by connecting a multimeter to the consumer unit and said the reading he was getting for the test indicated that something was not right. TBH what he was explaining was way over my head. Anyway, on the return visit to complete the remedial work he noticed that it looked like a power socket had been removed because the paint around one particular socket showed signs of cracking. He went directly to it and rectified a loose connection and all was okay. I did feel a little like I had been had. I will never know for sure…
I hope you didn’t get an unsatisfactory for no SPD.
That is a clear C3
Lack of continuity on a ring circuit is a clear C2
Had you or the tenant removed this socket. Or do you think the electrician may have done it( and loosened the connection).
Before I have a safety elec check I look at all the switches/ sockets/ drops and see if I need to replace them. . I recently had elec check on 3 flats in same building , I went ahead of the electrician and unscrewed sockets and drops and switches as directed , so I learnt what to look for as we worked together. . first time pass. It helps when you have many years in the building trade
It’s possible that electrician could have done it. It was a newly acquired property. 3 years old, and previously owner occupied. I can’t imagine what reason the previous owner would have to want to remove a double socket. Anyway, what is done is done.
Just had a EICR done as current one was expiring. A bunch of C3 observations and the engineer would only give me 1 year validity for the certificate! Installation is from mid 90s. Never fiddled with or added to. Never had so much as a fuse blow. Engineer said that if I replaced the three 32A fuses with RCBOs (general ring, kitchen ring and cooker) he would upgrade to 5yr. If he had checked properly by opening the fusebox cover, he would have seen very easily that the cooker fuse isn’t actually connected as the spark generator for it is run off the mains. Its a large studio flat so only two socket rings and two lighting rings. Metal Hager fusebox. Spoke to NAPIT where he is registered who were no help as they don’t deal with actual customers - only their registered engineers.
Also spoke to NICEIC where the engineer for the previous EICR is registered and who had stated in that cert that the installation ‘conforms to the latest BS7671 - 18th Edition standards’. They were no help either.
Both NAPIT and NICEIC conceded that the default validity for an EICR is 5 years but giving less is at the discretion of the engineer and even if there are only C3 on the obervations. I asked for the stated decision criteria for giving a shorter validity are and there are none. Its completely at the decision of the engineer.
I said this in a thread 3 years ago when EICRs became mandatory. The current system is open to abuse by engineers particularly if you installation is older and even though deemed safe to use.
Any advice Neelix?