Safety First- Electrical checks for landlords
Every year there are hundreds of accidents occur as a result of unsafe electrical installations in the home. These can result in serious fires to prove fatal. When most homeowners by new property few bother to undertake an electrical inspection despite the fact that most solicitors will notify them in all the general correspondence that they would be prudent to do so. Many homeowners choose to fix electrical problems themselves on electrical based systems such as alarm systems, security lights. These ‘do it yourself’ attempts are usually to avoid paying for a qualified electrician and unfortunately many faulty wiring is caused by unprofessional installations.
On July 2008 new IEE Wiring Regulations came into effect affecting all commercial, domestic and industrial premises where wiring installations must be designed, constructed, inspected, tested and certificated to meet the requirements of the safety code. homeowners rarely realise that the electrical wiring in their home may not be as safe as they first thought. depending upon age and level of maintenance of electrical system within a home it can become damaged over time through wear and tear. as most wiring is hidden away behind us and floorboards employing a qualified electrician to undertake regular maintenance checks is not usually top priority for homeowners who are not qualified enough to recognize there is a problem. maintenance checks should be undertaken on a regular basis and usually centred around the fuse board of the house where the next inspection date will be noted.
As part of the new regulations an electrical survey is required is to be undertaken on a regular basis. This is sometimes referred to as a Periodic Inspection. It’s main purpose is to check for potential fire hazard is the risk of an electric shock from an electrical system that is not compliant with legal guidelines. qualified electricians to undertake a survey in order to produce a periodic inspection report which details what work needs to be undertaken to fix any problems highlighted. Therefore it is essential to employ the services of a qualified electrician to carry out regular maintenance or undertake formal surveys prior to house purchasers.
Rectifying historical problems of older builds can be an expensive and messy job and sometimes it is more sensible to rewire the entire building rather than sought out and complete mess left by previous owners. This may involve taking up floorboards, entering the loft or attic areas and drilling holes in order to facilitate the latest and safest electrical wiring and devices. On completion of the job a qualified electrician will also be able to provide an installation certificate confirming the nature of the work that has been implemented and that it meets the latest safety standards. This is sometimes demanded by purchasers of potential properties who are concerned about the safety aspects of buying an older building. Electricians must notify the local authority under the building regulations Part P where electrical work is being implemented by person officially registered with the NICEIC.
Homeowners can pass an eagle eye over the internal contents of their property to look for signs of fire or electrocution which a qualified electrician can resolve. These include the following; electrical appliances that are not serviced and looked after properly, are another major cause of fire in the kitchen. In particular, toasters that are not cleaned out to remove crumbs from the crumb tray, sockets overloaded with white appliances, leaking appliances that cause a short. In addition, any ventilation points, or extractor fans that have not been serviced, to avoid blockages may contribute to a fire and it’s rate of spread. To prevent electrical fires, identify potential area of risk. Most notably; hot plugs and sockets, badly wired plugs, frayed power leads, repaired power leads, overloaded sockets, badly positioned cables and water near electrical items. Electrical items should be maintained properly. In particular, use sockets safely, throw away damaged cables, turn off and unplug, use the right fuses in your plugs.
If you require further information regarding electrical checks for landlords, please contact a local electrical contractor who should be able to advise you on current legislation.
This article was correct at the time of writing.