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Eicr Certificate

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chokkie | 15:28 Mon 04th Jul 2022 | Home & Garden
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Hi expert ABers ....

Wonder if you can help, please. We've just had some electrical work done at home (a new light fitting to our garage and we're thrilled with it. The sparks did a great job, but he also recommended that we get an EICR test done on our consumer unit/fuse board (at a cost to us of course!) and he also felt that our wiring system wasn't going to pass full muster, and that we would need to get various upgrades done to the wiring system. We are asking for a second opinion because, when we had our kitchen refitted at the beginning of this year, the certified and certificated electrician who did everything involved in the kitchen fitting (lights, etc) didn't say anything about the consumer unit needing an upgrade, nor an EICR survey done. We have contacted this electrician and asked him to get back to us for his thoughts. I spoke to a third sparks who advised me that EICR are only mandatory for a rental property, or for when a resident is requesting a "change of use" to the property. Mr. Chox and I would be very very grateful for some guidance here please. Just as an aside, but not unrelated, all the light fittings in our house are "non-earthed" (so we have to be very careful when we purchase a new light fitting, to ensure that it's suitable for a "non-earthed" system. What do you think folks? Many thanks, cheers, Chox.

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While Sparky-3 is correct in saying that testing is only mandatory (at 5 year intervals) in rental properties, the official guidance from the Electrical Safety Council is that the wiring in owner-occupied homes should be inspected every 10 years:
https://www.electricalsafetyfirst.org.uk/find-an-electrician/periodic-inspection-explained/

I doubt that the majority of people follow that guidance though. My home is 50 years old, and I've lived in it for over 30 years, but the wiring has never been checked by an electrician. (I have replaced any sockets that appear to getting hot, or otherwise showing signs of their age, though, as well as replacing some light switches and dimmers). It's up to you as to what level of risk you're prepared to accept.
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Buenchico - that's really interesting, didn't know any of that ... but will really bear that in mind when we make up our minds about whether or not to have this EICR survey done and any works needed done. However, we just don't have the funds for it all at the moment, but should be okay later in the year - Sparks number 1 has assured us that everything will be okay in the short term, but at the same time, I don't think that our wiring system has been checked for, probably, 20 years or so, so it is probably well worth doing. Really appreciate your help and advice. Cheers, Chox.
Agree with Bueno - wouldn't dare not to ;o)))

I've done quite a few of these reports. Usually it's for insurance (thatched properties for instance.)
Having no Earth on light fittings used to come up occasionally. It makes it impossible to do an EFLI (earth fault loop impedance)
That test is needed to make sure the MCBs (miniature circuit breakers) or fuses will operate properly in the event of a fault.

Not ideal, but not necessarily dangerous. But it does mean that any EICR will be incomplete. (A complete re-wire would probably be advised.)
No need to be alarmed, but I had to mention it.

10 years is a guideline. It's not compulsory for owner-occupiers.
If he's suggested a new consumer unit, then I guess it has no RCDs (Earth Trips) and is possibly old-type re-wireable fuses.
With no earth conductor on the lighting, I would say it was wired before the mid 1970's. If there has been no upgrades since then, it will need some. Sparks no 2 was only doing his job..he has an obligation to alert customers to obvious issues. If in doubt contact your insurer.
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Thanks so much, thebuilder. Appreciate your sound advice. I think we have decided against it, and just take a punt that all will be okay until next year when we have plans for a bathroom renovation and a complete house redecorate, too. Not least because we Don’t fancy another session of the house being in complete uproar this side of December 2022, after 2months of it with the kitchen… but thanks again both for your advice. Cheers Chox.
Having no integral earth-wires within old lighting cables only warrants a C3 indication on a report (requires improvement). The only caveat for this is if someone has installed metal light-switches or light fittings, which elevates the recommendation to C2 (potentially dangerous).
There is no obligation in the Regulations to upgrade any existing wiring to current Regulations unless there's a serious issue. Having rewireable fuses, for example, is no detriment.
Any new electrical work must comply with current Regulations.

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