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Ring main socket behind a washing machine

i am planning on installing a new work counter in my kitchen underneath which will be a washing machine and tumble drying. At the moment there is an electrical socket at the same height that the worktop will be at. so my preferred plan A is to remove that socket and lower it a few inches to below the new worktop and reintegrate it into the ring main (using an rcd socket), and then run a spur from it to a new socket above the worktop.

my first question does that fall foul of building regulations with a ring main socket behind a washing machine?

if plan A is no good, plan B would be to make the socket above the worktop the ring main socket and run a spur to a fused switch and then down to the socket below the worktop. Would that satisfy the regulations?

if i am forced to use plan B, the cables from the ring main would be too short to reach the new socket, so can i just splice in a extra foot or so of cable with connector strips which i then bury in the wall or would i need some meatier form of splicing method or would i need to run 2 new cables all the way to the next sockets in the ring main?

ok so i've had a couple of answers so far and i think i may have made my question overly confusing. the main thrust of my question is:

is it ok to move a ring main socket (which is rcd protected) down about 6 inch's and reinstate it and for 2 free standing appliances (washing machine / tumble dryer) to be directly in front of the new position and use the sockets?

all the other details i added was me trying to think around to a different solution if thats not allowed, it would seem from the 2 answers i've got that it is allowed so the rest of the details in the original question are surplus to requirements

3 Answers from MyBuilder Electricians

Best Answer

A - Putting an RCD socket behind a washing machine is not a great idea, how will you test it? Why would you put an RCD socket outlet in anyway, do you not have RCD protection to the circuit? You may want to read what BS7288 stipulates regarding the supplementary protection it provides, and the necessity for there to be 30 mA RCD additional protection upstream of the socket provided by a BS EN 61008; BS EN 61009 and another BS EN number I’m unable to remember right now.

B - Depends how you install it?

Anyway, building regs regarding electrical work, Part P, applies to new installation work, fuseboard replacements and other work associated with special locations... to name some examples. Simply moving a socket, or adding to an existing circuit in a kitchen will not fall within the scope of the Part P building regs in England & Wales.

Please get yourself an electrician to attend, advise and install.



Answered 5th Oct 2020

What you are proposing seems clumsy. The best solution would be to raise the existing double socket clear of the worktop on the existing ring circuit, and extend the ring circuit to a new double socket directly below under the worktop. However, if the appliances are integrated type you cannot install sockets directly behind them. There would be insufficient space for starters, and you would prevent easy access to the socket. You would have to install the socket to one side. Free-standing appliances have more space behind them, so the socket can go directly behind. It can then be accessed by pulling the appliance out. You mentioned an RCD socket? This is not necessary if the circuit already has 30mA RCD protection but it is the wiring that should be RCD protected not the socket. If you are unsure get an electrician to take a look and advise.


Answered 5th Oct 2020

A kitchen is a special location and is therefore part p notifiable irrelevant of the work carried out. The rcd should be on the circuit as a whole and using chocky block joiners and bury them in the wall is never acceptable. Please just use a qualified electrician it’s simple and quick and they can carry out the appropriate tests to make it safe.


Answered 3rd Nov 2020

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