I am writing this post having recently attended a property for a simple job and finding some fairly disturbing things that were unrelated to the task before me; this has lead me to prompt people to ask themselves “How safe is my house? Do I need an electrical inspection?”
I guess the first thing to point out here is that even though your power points, lights and other electrical items seem to be functioning fine it doesn’t mean that there’s not problems lurking within your roof space or somewhere else just waiting to rear its ugly head; these things won’t be known unless you have an electrical inspection performed.
What I found when I attending this property is in the following photos:
These photos above show where someone (I’m hoping a handyperson DIY and not an electrician) has decided to use extension leads to wire up some light fittings in the home. Now this isn’t immediately dangerous in itself (however it is classed as defective cabling) but the biggest risk here is the fact that the junctions, or joins, in the cables are not enclosed and therefore pose a risk to someone who could be in the roofspace and inadvertently touches the join.
What you can see on the above photos are the attempts to terminate the new light fittings that have been installed. The problem here is that the light fittings may not be earthed correctly and if this is the case then the RCD that is installed won’t operate if there’s a fault to earth; this could happen if when changing a globe. You will also notice in the third photo there is a cable that is un-terminated which could very well be connected in the roof to an active conductor so it is just sitting there waiting to zap someone!
What the above illustrates is that everything was operating ‘normally’ in this home but the reality is there are a number of serious defects that need to be rectified and this wouldn’t be known without an electrical inspection having been performed. If you are just about to purchase a home, have just purchased a home or have been in your home for a while for that matter, it might be worthwhile having an electrical inspection to have a look at your existing wiring etc and see if there are any things that require immediate attention. If you are looking to purchase a home, then write it into your offer that it’s subject to passing of an electrical inspection.
What are the things that we look for in an inspection I hear you ask. Well below is a list (not comprehensive) from the 22 point Visual Inspection Report that we can perform for you:
- Consumer mains supply – if this is an overhead supply then we will inspect the point of attachment to the home and the condition of the cabling through the roof space (where accessible)
- Switchboard – we inspect the condition and layout of your switchboard looking to see if there’s issues with loose connections or any improvements that you would benefit from
- M.E.N. – this item (multiple earthed neutral) is quite possibly the most important aspect of your installation. This is where the earthing system connects back to the supply neutral and will direct any fault current if your earthing is bad at your property. In addition to this, we inspect your earth stake which is also a highly important item
- All power points and switches – a quick visual inspection to see if there’s an issue with any of your existing points you might wish to have looked at
- General cabling – this is our favourite part (not) where we get in the roof and inspect some of your cabling so make sure that it’s all functioned correctly, run in the right way and not suffering any damage.
- Downlights – if you have any of these, we will make sure that they are not causing any problems with heat build up against any wooden roof beams or insulation
What you will end up with at the end of this is a report which outlines any areas that might need immediate attention, or items that could be looked at for improvement.
Give us a call today to book your inspection. You might be surprised at what you find out about your electrical installation.