Inspection and Testing - Why Is It Important?
An Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) of a property consists of a visual inspection of the electrical installation together with live and dead testing of the installation by a suitably qualified electrician. On completion of the visual inspection and testing of the installation, an Electrical Installation Condition Report is issued. This shows if there are any faults and if the installation is safe to use at the time of the test. If electrical faults are found, these will be notified within your report. It should be remembered that all electrical installations should be tested and inspected at regular recommended intervals, and you have a duty of care in LAW to ensure the electrical systems are safe to be used.
Periodic testing and inspections do not have to be completed by a part P-approved Company under part P of the building regulations, and can be done by anyone qualified to complete a test and inspection, however with 45 years of knownledge, you can rest assured you would be in safe hands by using Safe Electric (Nationwide) Ltd. as we are qualified to complete Electrical Installation Condition Reports on Domestic, Commercial and Industrial Installations.
If there are any faults found during the test, they are given codes C1, C2, C3 or FI. If a C1, C2 or FI code is given, it would mean that the installation is in an unsatisfactory condition. Code C1 faults require urgent attention, code C2 faults require improvement, code C3 does not comply with BS 7671:2018 but does not mean it is unsafe. FI fault requires further investigation, which could lead to a C1 or C2 and cannot be ignored. All installations that fail a test and inspection and require remedial work should be given a retest after the remedial work is completed, to ensure that electrical works and alterations have been installed to the correct standards.
How Often Should One Be Completed
- Domestic installations every 10 years or change of tenant or owner.
- Commercial installations every 5 years or change of occupancy.
- Educational installations every 5 years except for fire & emergency lighting.
- Residential accommodation every 5 years or change of occupancy.
- Offices every 5 years or change of occupancy except for fire & emergency lighting.
- Caravans every 3 years.
- Industrial every 3 years. (Such as a Manufacturing Plant).
Main Reasons for Test and Inspections
- BS 7671:2018 states every electrical installation should be periodically tested and inspected.
- Electrical installations deteriorate with use and over time and can put users in danger.
- To detect any electrical faults which would cause shock or burns to humans or livestock.
- Check if the installation is safe to use.
- Check if there is protection against damage to property by fire or heat arising from a defect.
- Before a new tenant moves in if the property is sub-let or leased.
- Before selling a property for a mortgage application.
- Change of use of the property.
- Additions to the installation which could cause overloading.
- Alterations to the installation which could cause harm or damage.
- Problems reported about the installation such as fuses blowing or tripping.
- If there has been flooding or water damage due to a leak.
- After a fire or electrical fault to the whole or part of the installation.
- If it is reported that there has been an electrical shock received.
What Happens During the Testing and Inspection
- Details of the installation are noted as well as the owner’s name and address.
- Check the type of installation is it, domestic, commercial, Industrial.
- Type of supply (Single phase or 3 phase).
- The number of consumer units fitted.
- The number of circuits.
- Number of fixed appliances, lights, plugs, etc. (if practicable)
- Type of heating, cooking and water heating appliances.
- What’s on each circuit and what should not be.
- Checking for defects visually.
- Dead testing of each circuit to obtain test readings to check safety and conformity.
- Live testing of each circuit to check against regulations and check safety and conformity.
- Check cables are installed correctly and in a safe manner.
- Check correct cable sizes are used throughout.
- Check that the main earth conductor is present.
- Check if that the main gas pipe is earth bonded and installed correctly.
- Check that the main water pipe is earth bonded and installed correctly.
- Check MCB is of the correct size.
- Check that all metal light switches, light fittings, and other metal accessories are earthed.
- RCD’s are working correctly to the correct tripping value.
- AFDD’s are working correctly.
- SPD’s devices are correctly installed.