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Is it ok to have a cooker switch/socket box 70cm above an electrical hob?

Hi everyone.

We have just bought an old terraced house to rent out where the kitchen needs ripping out, we have kept the layout the same as the old kitchen so as to minimise work/shifting plug sockets etc.

The old kitchen had a freestanding combined electric oven/hob cooker - there was no extractor above, but there is a heavy duty looking cooker switch and socket box above where the cooker is (is it about 70 cm up the wall from the hob/worktop level).

We want to put in a new integrated oven with a recessed into the worktop solid plate electic hob in exactly the same place as before, but we aren't sure if this cooker switch/socket is ok/legal/safe etc to stay where it is or not ie 70cm or so directly above the electric hob?

Thanks for your help, it is much appreciated.

***I have to add that we are not doing the electical work ourselves in any way - to try keep work to a minimum we wanted to leave any sockets etc in the same place - the reason why I posted this query was because, as many point out below, that it would in theory be unwise to have a cooker switch/socket over a hob (electric). But as it was already there situated above the cooker, we wanted to check if this was ok or not.

Thanks everyone for your answers - we are getting the house checked out by an electician for a full safety certificate.***

7 Answers from MyBuilder Electricians

Best Answer

hi, it`s not a good idea to leave the c.c.u (cooker control unit)above the hob area because if there is a fire from a chip pan,frying pan etc. there is no way to isolate the circuit in an emergency. Ask an electrician to move it approx.300mm from the edge of the hob or alternatively the cable can be joined(by steel insulated crimps and heatshrink or equivelant) and move it into an ajacent base unit to the front for easy access. Hope this helps.
Sparkright Electrical


Answered 31st Aug 2011


Whilst no direct regulation exists for this (apart maybe from Corgi with gas hobs). Guidance is given that the switch should be 300mm to either side of the hob. Its common sense really to avoid the need to lean over a hob with a burning pan on to turn the power off etc.

Hope this helps.


Answered 31st Aug 2011

Someone said there was no direct legislation about this problem but guidance says it would be a good idea. BS7671 is non statutory and therefore people think it is for guidance only. But it is important to take note that although BS7671 is non statutory, it is mentioned in the Electricity At Work which is mandatory and thus BS7671 could be used in court AGAINST you if you can't show why you didn't follow it.


Answered 23rd Jul 2013

Looking at the IEE's guide to building regs in 5.2 Kitchens: cooker control switches, extractor fan switches etc. should not be mounted so that it is necessary to lean or reach over a gas or electric hob for there operation (5.2.2 ii)
There is also an illustration that has a cooker/hob and a note saying no sockets or accessories (cooker switches, fused spurs and so on) above gas or electric hobs.
So from what you have said I would say no that is building reg's. Despite popular belief, it doesn't say to my knowledge 300mm away left or right for a CCU unless it's a socket but that is best practice and I would do that.


Answered 21st Jun 2013

hi, no it has to be 300mm left are right away from oven (hob)

hope that helps



Answered 31st Aug 2011

From what you say it sounds as if you are doing the electrics yourself.As this is a kitchen,if you are not a part p registered electrician it is illegal for you to do a d.i.y. job.You need to hire an electrician and he will give you all your answers.


Answered 31st Aug 2011

You should not leave a cooker switch above a hob the heat and steam will penetrate it, water and electrical faults can and do cause fire. It is not designed to be there,
If it is in use still you would not be able to turn it off in an emergency such as a pan fire or fault with the Hob when in use, you would have to stretch over the problem, the switch must be repositioned to an area within easy reach less than 2 Mtrs but not hidden in a cupboard or out of site. Any electrical work like this in a Kitchen has to be notified to building control by law (up to a £5,000 fine I believe) as a Landlord you would be held responsible for the electrical safety within your property. If a tenant is hurt you need to prove that you have made every attempt to avoid it happening including a full inspection of the Electrical Installation on a regular basis espcially if the property is re let to another tenant as any bodges or damage to the electrical system is still your responsibility even if they cause it.
put the job up on mybuilder get some quotes good luck


Answered 31st Aug 2011

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