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Adding socket in kitchen - new consumer unit needed?
I'm installing a new kitchen and as part of that want to add an extra double socket, one outlet for under cupboard lighting and an extra outlet to split the feed to the electric cooker into two to support a separate hob and oven. I've had two electicians round to give me a quote. The first said £120, the second noticed the moment he walked in that I've got an old Wylex unit with no RCD. He said the kitchen work could only be certified if the circuit he was adding to had RCD protection. He could add an RCD to just that circuit but it costs not much more to install a new consumer unit. He reckoned about £450 standard to fit a new consumer unit and he'd do the kitched work free as that's not a big job. They're both NICEIC members, but which one is correct? And if I do need a new consumer unit does this seem a reasonable price?
Thanks for your answers
5 Answers from MyBuilder Electricians
FIrstly £450 for the consumer unit change is a little on the expensive side, but if your in central london then maybe thats about right as there will be price variations depending on location.
However the second electrician is 100% correct and is much more aware of the 17th Edition regulations (BS7671:2008), as any addition to a circuit in the bathroom or kitchen no matter how minor, must be RCD protected under the regulations.
Its also true that all socket outlets should now be RCD protecetd so upgrading your fuseboard to a modern high integrity dual RCD and MCB one will improve the safety of the whole house and also bring your wiring right up to date.
As the Electrical Installation Certificate and Part P building regulation notification to LABC are both important, I'd go with the second guy even though he is a bit on the expensive side, hes much more likely to do a proper job.
See also: http://edmundson-electrical.voltilink.co.uk/news/6345/cm/voltispecial---the-17th-edition-wiring-regulations---requirements-for-rcd-protection.html
Answered 20th Feb 2012
That’s frightening considering their both NICEIC members.
The guy telling you that you need a new consumer unit is right. Yes that’s about right for a consumer unit upgrade. No mention of Gas and Water bonding though? These will probably need upgrading too, along with the main tails to the consumer unit.
Answered 30th Oct 2012
Bishops Stortford • Member since 17 Feb 2012 • 6 jobs, 100% positive feedback
For any Electrician to certificate the job to NIC standards you definitly need some form of RCD protection on your fuseboard. I would recommend a fuseboard change, which not only does it cover your kitchen but also the rest of your property is protected as well then. £450 sounds a bit heavy as I charge £360 usually which includes a whole test to your property, all circuits will be labelled and have identification stickers so you know what fuse switches what. As for the work in the kitchen i would be happy to include that in the cost as well.
Answered 20th Feb 2012
£450 for a new consumer unit is well within a reasonable range provided it includes installation of main equipotential bonding. The specific cost of installing the equipotential bonding is going to be a function of distance from consumer unit position to gas meter/water supply intake/oil intake etc. In such a case £450 is reasonable.
Answered 26th Jul 2012
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