Electrical Inspection and Testing
Just like your car MOT - It is important, at regular intervals, that you ensure you carry out the necessary checks on the condition of the electrics in your home. Over a period of time, all electrical installations will naturally deteriorate.
This will help to identify if there are any faults or defects which could require improvement. And will ensure the safe operation of the installation going forward.
There are two kinds of checks (visual or EICR) that can be carried out and we recommend that you always employ a qualified electrician to carry out such checks.
Visual Inspection – Safety check
A visual inspection is a basic check to identify any visible signs of defects, damage or deterioration. No circuit testing will be performed; therefore, your electricity won’t be turned off during the inspection.
The electrician will need access to all of the rooms in your home. The report will typically take around 1 hour to complete, depending on the size of your property.
The Visual Inspection report (VIR) will detail a number of observations and recommendations (if any) and provide an overall summary of the condition of the installation.
Below is a check list of the things you can expect to be looked at during a visual inspection.
Consumer Unit (main fuse board)
Circuit protection / RCD protection
Earthing and bonding
External electrical safety
Light fittings / Light switches
Electrical cables and/or leads for:
Signs of wear and tear
Visible signs of burning/scorching
Extension leads & circuit overload
Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR)
An electrical installation condition report (EICR) will highlight any defects in your home’s electrical installation. Including inadequate short circuit protection, damaged/outdated wiring, and faulty connections which may give rise to danger, along with observations for which improvement is recommended.
It is more detailed than a VIR, as it involves the testing of circuits and verifying operation of the circuit protection devices. The electrics are required to be turned off during which allows the electrician to identify any possible hidden defects or issues that cannot be identified during a VIR.
The purpose of an EICR (known as periodic inspection and testing), is to determine, so far as is reasonably practicable, whether the installation is in a satisfactory condition for continued service.
As a homeowner or homebuyer, you want the peace of mind that the electrics in your home are safe. Similarly, landlords with an awareness of their electrical safety obligations, undertake regular periodic inspections in relation to their rental properties.
It is generally recommended that an EICR is carried out every ten years (five for privately rented properties) or when there is a change of occupancy in a dwelling.
For all new circuits, or additions to existing circuits, the following electrical certificates will be issued.
Electrical installation certificate will be provided for inspection & testing new installations, or new additions to existing (new circuits).
Minor Electrical installation certificate will be provided for small additions or alterations (no new circuits).