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Electrical certificates and safety check in the UK

Over time all electrical installations deteriorate, therefore for continued service they must be tested and inspected every 3 to 5 years. These safety checks are known as ‘domestic electrical installation condition reports’ or ‘periodic inspections’.
An electrical inspection reports will:

• Identify defective electrical work.
• Highlight a lack of earthing or bonding
• Reveal whether electrical circuits or equipment are overloaded.
• Find potential electric shock risks and, or fire hazards.

Tests must also be carried out on fixed electrical equipment and wiring to check they are safe. A schedule of circuits for the property is also provided.
What happens during an electrical certificate inspection and who should carry it out?
Electrical inspection certificates or reports must be carried out only by accredited, fully qualified, registered electricians. The condition of the electrics will be checked against BS 7671 – Requirements for Electrical Installations (IEE Wiring Regulations; the UK standard for the safety of electrical installations,).
Generally, most Councils, Housing Associations, Estate Agents or Managing Agents only accept Electrical Certificates signed off by a fully qualified and registered engineer. All our engineers are registered and fully qualified to carry out electrical certificates or domestic electrical installation condition reports. They are: ELECSA or NICEIC certified. In the event of an accident due to faulty electrics e.g. a tenant suffers an electrical shock, without a valid electrical certificate, your insurance may not cover you.

This list will help you avoid risks:
• Check the electrician is registered with a regulatory body such as NICEIC, ELECSA or NAPIT;
• Only Approved Contractors can issue electrical certificates (EICRS) NOT Domestic Installers – ensure the electrician is registered with the appropriate scheme;
• Only registered electricians can obtain insurance; ensure the electrician is Fully Insured with a registered body. We are fully insured.

First Action engineers inspect:

• The efficiency of bonding and earthing.
• The extent of any wear and tear, damage or other deterioration.
• Switchgear and control gear suitability e.g, old fuse boxes with cast-iron switches and, or wooden backs, must be replaced.
• Suitability of sockets, switches and lighting fittings. Older round-pin
• sockets, round light switches, cables with fabric coating hanging from ceiling roses to light fittings, black switches and sockets mounted in skirting boards may need replacing.
• The condition and type of wiring system e.g. cables coated in lead or fabric may well need replacing (modern cables use longer-lasting PVC insulation), cables coated in black rubber were phased out in the 1960s.
• You have a fuse box with a suitable residual current device (RCD).
• Any changes in the use of the premises that have led to, or may lead to, unsafe conditions.
• The presence of adequate identification and notices.

First Action engineers provide an Electrical Installation Condition Report following an inspection. This must and will detail any non-compliances with the current UK standards, along with details of any observed dangerous and defective conditions caused by damage or deterioration.
The overall condition of the electrical installation will be declared to be ‘unsatisfactory’, meaning that remedial action is required without delay to remove the risks to those in the premises if any dangerous conditions have been identified.

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