Fircroft Chronicles - Electrics Inspection and Blood Pressure

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Cubist
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Fircroft Chronicles - Electrics Inspection and Blood Pressure

Post by Cubist » Sun 25th Oct, 2020 5:20 pm

Apologies to all, its been a while since my last post, seems I had a minor stroke while doing some repairs on my other restoration project, Black Bess, a 2002 Jaguar. As a consequence the restoration and repair work on Fircroft ground to a halt while I have been adapting to a new normal in parallel with adjusting to the rigours and constraints Covid has imposed on us all. That aside I need some help to get my blood pressure back under control without assistance from the medics and their, more intrusive than a CO, remedies.

As further misfortune would have it my EICR was due to expire in late September and, being a good Home Insurance customer, I got the new inspection conducted in good time for the renewal.

Good news; Fircroft got a 'Satisfactory' 10 year pass after a Arc Protection device was added for the First Floor Lighting and Shower Pump circuits.

Bad news; my insurers now insist on 'NO' C3s on the EICR. As a consequence the Insurer threatens to withdraw 'ALL' Fire Cover, irrespective of root cause of any such.

Reason for the C3s - Plastic consumer units, of which there are two owing to space constraints, and no separation between circuits as required in BS7671:2018 Regulation 314.1 & 531.3.2 (RCD Main switch).

I understand the problem with the consumer units but the 'no separation' issue is a mystery to me.

Naturally this state of affairs has got my blood boiling so can anyone explain what the 'no separation' is and how it can be remedied?

I know theres no explaining the behaviours of insurers but has anyone else come across a situation in which a Satisfactory EICR is not in fact Satisfactory?

Cheers,
Cubist

a twig
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Re: Fircroft Chronicles - Electrics Inspection and Blood Pressure

Post by a twig » Sun 25th Oct, 2020 7:55 pm

Separation is presumably that there are too many things on one RCD, so one circuit tripping would take out a whole load of things. Last few places I've owned I've gone for RCBO on every circuit, bit more spendy but then each circuit is individually protected and a fault on one doesn't affect anything else.

http://www.doepke.co.uk/download/Techpub-05.pdf might help - without seeing your CU, can't really provide detail, but as an example:

Having all your lighting circuits on the same RCD as sockets, to a fault with something plugged in plunges your whole house into darkness is a big no-no these days

Owain
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Re: Fircroft Chronicles - Electrics Inspection and Blood Pressure

Post by Owain » Thu 29th Oct, 2020 7:36 pm

Cubist wrote:
Sun 25th Oct, 2020 5:20 pm
has anyone else come across a situation in which a Satisfactory EICR is not in fact Satisfactory?
Insurers can have their own requirements additional to the IET Wiring Regs.

88v8
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Re: Fircroft Chronicles - Electrics Inspection and Blood Pressure

Post by 88v8 » Sun 1st Nov, 2020 10:38 am

I had our fuseboard, as I call it, replaced a couple of months ago.
It was my decision, not forced on us.

Metal enclosure with fall-shut lid.
All RCBOs. Tripping of one circuit no longer trips the whole house.
There is a break somewhere in the earth of our ring, can't find where, so one power circuit was derated to 16A.
Was about £800.

Inspection cert, I refused to provide a copy of the Recommendations, it's none of the insurer's d..d business.
Alas, I think requiring a clean sheet is quite routine in the insurer fraternity.
Eventually I let the cert expire, as I couldn't be bothered with some of the Recs. The insurer said there would be no fire cover for electrical fires... which would no doubt lead to a debate if it ever happened.

Eventually, that, and the endless fuss about our woodburners ... thatched... led me to decide that I can't be bothered with insurance any more.

I bought two 3/4" hoses. At least if it sets light, they'll be a bit better than peeing on it.

Ivor

a twig
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Re: Fircroft Chronicles - Electrics Inspection and Blood Pressure

Post by a twig » Tue 3rd Nov, 2020 9:20 pm

We have a similar approach, I only take out bare minimum insurance for a full rebuild should it get levelled, nothing else ever seems to be worth claiming on these days once excess etc is taken into account

Bogart
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Re: Fircroft Chronicles - Electrics Inspection and Blood Pressure

Post by Bogart » Sun 8th Nov, 2020 12:53 pm

Find strange they are going on about plastic CUs I reckon the country must still have 99% plastic and no recommendation to change unless other reasons to fit a new one.
Look we all know insurance companies are there for their , and only their, benefit. Heaven knows when my place was last inspected electrically, probably when they removed the gas lighting. Is something I have been going to get around to for ages, well years if honest.

Zebra
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Re: Fircroft Chronicles - Electrics Inspection and Blood Pressure

Post by Zebra » Sat 14th Nov, 2020 4:25 pm

This is interesting. I only have the bare minimum buildings insurance, since if anything less minor than a tree falling on the house - hmm, even that - certainly anything like a leaky pipe or a broken window, I'll fix it myself, I won't claim and have whoever they want to send round. And my insurance doesn't ask for anything like electrical certificates.

Flyfisher
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Re: Fircroft Chronicles - Electrics Inspection and Blood Pressure

Post by Flyfisher » Sat 14th Nov, 2020 5:23 pm

Zebra wrote:
Sat 14th Nov, 2020 4:25 pm
. . . And my insurance doesn't ask for anything like electrical certificates.
Neither does mine, and I cannot remember EVER being asked for such a thing - electrics, gas, hetas . . . nothing. And that's across a number of insurers over the years. Perhaps it's a new and insidious trend?

As for plastic consumer units, I'm not sure what all the fuss is about. Surely the previously approved CUs were constructed from non-flammable/fire-rated plastics? If so, why the sudden requirement to go to all-metal ones? What next, all-metal electrical fittings for socket outlets, light switches etc etc?

My heart is with 88v8 on the 'no insurance' option but my head is not brave enough.

88v8
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Re: Fircroft Chronicles - Electrics Inspection and Blood Pressure

Post by 88v8 » Sun 15th Nov, 2020 9:32 am

Flyfisher wrote:
Sat 14th Nov, 2020 5:23 pm
Surely the previously approved CUs were constructed from non-flammable/fire-rated plastics?
Haha, you think...
And moreover, it having been determined that these plastic CU enclosures with their fall-open fronts are a fire hazard, the industry was given a year's deferral on introduction of the new standards so they could flog off their existing stocks. Nothing to do with the fact that the governing body is largely staffed and funded by the manufacturers of course.

And not only the CUs now. Any new surface cables have to be secured by metal clips because there have been instances of plastic clips melting in a fire and live cables falling on firefighters.
Or perhaps one instance.
Or perhaps a scenario.
Anyway.

Fortunately, I have hundreds of buckle clips.

Ivor

Flyfisher
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Re: Fircroft Chronicles - Electrics Inspection and Blood Pressure

Post by Flyfisher » Sun 15th Nov, 2020 10:46 am

The metal cable-clips thing seems somewhat extraordinary to me, especially in domestic buildings. Firstly, how many houses have lots of exposed cables that require fixing in the first place when most are covered up in some way because of being intrinsically unsightly? Attics might be an exception in that respect. Secondly, when called to a blazing house fire, or perhaps even a smouldering one, does no one first try to isolate the electricity supply? In which case, falling cables due to molten plastic clips are not going to electrocute anyone.

Zebra
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Re: Fircroft Chronicles - Electrics Inspection and Blood Pressure

Post by Zebra » Sun 15th Nov, 2020 3:10 pm

Yes, the rules get ever more stringent...

Flyfisher
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Re: Fircroft Chronicles - Electrics Inspection and Blood Pressure

Post by Flyfisher » Sun 15th Nov, 2020 3:57 pm

Zebra wrote:
Sun 15th Nov, 2020 3:10 pm
Yes, the rules get ever more stringent...
I envisage standards committee meetings where everyone is focused how to 'improve' the existing standards rather than assess if they are adequate as they are. I'm not suggesting that regulations shouldn't exist or never change but each minor change has huge knock-on effects for the people and businesses whose very living depends on being able to demonstrate they are up to date with the latest editions and therefore 'competent'. And of course it is the consumer who ends up paying for all the increased costs - especially now that we are not deemed to be 'competent' any more.

Our go-to electrician (father/son small business) decided against taking on an apprentice because of the training costs every time a new edition of the regulations were released. I suppose it's all good news for the training industry though.

I think I'm suffering from early onset 'Victor Meldrew-ism'.

Zebra
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Re: Fircroft Chronicles - Electrics Inspection and Blood Pressure

Post by Zebra » Sun 15th Nov, 2020 4:22 pm

I know. Not just RCDs now, but surge protection devices, arc protection devices. It's mind boggling. How can the industry, never mind householders, hope to keep up?

malcolm
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Re: Fircroft Chronicles - Electrics Inspection and Blood Pressure

Post by malcolm » Sun 15th Nov, 2020 4:33 pm

It's a little annoying when you decide to have your house rewired in two phases a couple of years apart. The first phase is out of date before the second phase is started.

In addition electricians seem really busy and quotes can be 4 times pre-covid levels. I think the result of this is some people might start deciding they are competent and will do it themselves and not mention it to the state. So back to square one again.

Zebra
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Re: Fircroft Chronicles - Electrics Inspection and Blood Pressure

Post by Zebra » Sun 15th Nov, 2020 4:42 pm

And now, don't quote me, but I think a new regulation has come in about all rental properties having to be tested every year? No wonder electricians are busy. I had someone I used to work with years ago phone me up desperate for help, he had hundreds of flats to test! As for householders DIYing (good point malcolm about possibly seeing an increase in this as householders can't find electricians), it's only a problem if you want to sell and don't have the correct paperwork. I can imagine this seriously holding up sales in future.

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