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Electrical

15th or 16th edition consumer unit

Have just bought a house and the mortgage provider's surveyor recommended that the electrical circuit be inspected and any recommendations be carried out. Following inspection the nicec qualified electrician said that a consumer unit was required along updating of the earthing system and the work was carried out at a cost of £515 - first question - is this reasonable price?

This question has arisen because last night there was a flood of water from the upstairs bathroom due to a blockage in the waste pipe resulting in the water dropping int the kitchen via the kitchen light so causing the box to trip. Following a visit today thru home care cover the blockage was rectified by a plumber but the electrician has said that the previous electricians have only installed a 15th edition box although the box itself is a 16th addition but has had one of the rcd's removed - what does this mean ? - is it fully up to standard and is the amount i have paid correct?

Note that the house is quite old along with the wiring and that the upstairs and downstairs light are on one circuit - the electrician has gone away having disconnected the lighting circuit and placed a hazard notice on it saying that it could take a fortnight to dry out

4 Answers from MyBuilder Electricians

You should of had a 17th edition compliant board installed you are describing a 16th edition board (with one RCD) Price is ok but only if installation was installed complying with all current regulations which from your description it has not.
I think it may be likely your wiring had faults on the insulation between live/earth or neutral/earth which caused tripping of RCD. Possibly your electrician could not be bothered to locate and rectify the problem or was not competent enough to locate and rectify the problem so just removed the RCD leaving the circuit/circuits unprotected by RCD leaving the installation in breach of regulations.

2015-03-15T21:20:02+00:00

Answered 15th Mar 2015

Fuseboard should of been installed to 17th edition regulations, which would of been a dual RCD fuseboard or a standard fuseboard fitted with RCBO's. Earthing if needed to be upgraded should of been done along with any serious defects so that an Electrical Installation Certificate and Part P notification can be issued.

The price if done correctly does sound in the right region.

I would get someone out to check there work, you could also speak to the NICEIC directly, Have you been issued with certification?

2015-03-15T21:20:02+00:00

Answered 15th Mar 2015

Hi , I'm not professional electrician yet , but it seems to me the guy wasn't real professional . You asking 15th or 16th edition but to my knowledge the 17th edition with all standards, requirements and regulations has been out since 2008 . That would mean if you want to do some work like rewiring or changing your consumer unit you want all these to be complete under 17th edition BS7671 regulations and standards .And if he didn't give you any certificate after he completed this job then your right is to ask him for one , otherwise he has done all this illegaly .

2015-03-15T21:20:02+00:00

Answered 15th Mar 2015

Answers, first the price, if the job has been carried out by a Part P Registered Electrician with all testing carried out & certificates provided It's a fair price. But it sounds as though some items are not correct.The 15th regulations were from the 1970's, if it was a 16th board this could have been a recommendation for upgrade. But if all circuits were wired correctly and after inspection & Testing of the installation then this board could have been serviceable making sure that RCD 30Mamp protection was provided for power circuits and showers etc. as the 16th regulations required when original installation was installed some years ago.
No Parts should be removed from the design of the consumer unit.
For the existing 16th Consumer unit to remain in service to the property must have a Network electric suppliers Earthing System connection provided,with all bonding in place.
If this being an older property it could be supplied by overhead cable system this would be a different board on the older regulations and require a upgrade.
It would be my recommendations that you get a registered electrical con tractor to carry out a full inspection ,and fit a upgraded new board complying to 17th BS7671 Wiring Regulations, this is a split board with 2x RCD &Main switch., or RCBO's and Main switch.
All Main Earth Protective Bonding and Main Earthing conductor should be upgraded at the same time.
As far as leaving the lighting circuit disconnected , this would be for safety, but could have looked into the possibility of disconnection of sections affected by the water ingress to provide you with some light after insulation testing of affected circuit.
Lighting circuits should be 2 one up lights and 1 down lights , rewiring if not.
Your existing lighting circuit should be tested before reconnection.
All items found on a ECR report should be attended to and remedial works carried out, {Electrical Installation condition Report}

2015-03-15T21:20:02+00:00

Answered 15th Mar 2015

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