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Electrical Installations

This web page defines the term ‘electrical installation’ and gives a brief overview of the laws and regulations that apply to domestic and commercial electrical installations in England and Wales.

 

Electrical Installations

The electrical installation of a domestic residence or small business are the ‘fixed’ parts of the electrical circuit; for instance the wiring, wall sockets, RCD domestic units, and distribution boards.

The electrical installation is an integral part of the building, it is not portable, it is fixed.

Electrical appliances can be ‘fixed’, for instance a large electrical generator in a building that has no mains supply.

 

Most ‘domestic’ appliances, for instance toasters and kettles, are not ‘fixed’ and, if in a place of business, come under the PAT (Portable Appliance Testing) regulations.

 

Domestic Electrical Installations – ‘Part P’

Part P of Schedule 1 of the Building Regulations came into force, in England and Wales, on the first of January 2005.

 

Schedule 1 of the Building Regulations has fourteen parts; Parts A to P (no Part I). Part P concerns electrical safety.

 

Part P of Schedule 1 of the building regulations defines the legal requirements governing domestic electrical installations.

 

A generalisation of the Part P building regulations is:

  • They apply to all but the most basic of domestic electrical work outside of the kitchen and bathroom.
    • See Part P web page for a full description of areas where Part P applies.
  • They apply to the most basic of domestic electrical work in kitchens and bathrooms.
    • See Part P web page for a full description of areas where Part P applies.
  • They apply where other building regulations don’t.
  • If Part P building regulations apply, an ‘Approved Part P Contractor’ must do the electrical work OR a ‘Local Council Building Approved Building Inspector’ must approve the work.

Commercial Electrical Installations

All businesses should take all reasonable steps to ensure the electrical installation of their premises is safe.

 

The best way to ensure the electrical installation is safe is to have a competent person (take competent person to mean qualified electrician) do an electrical test and inspection.

 

There are many laws and regulations that affect the businesses in the UK.

The requirements of the UK electrical laws and regulations can be summarised as:

  • Is the business property electrically safe?
  • Has the business taken all reasonable steps to ensure the property is electrically safe?
  • Can the business show that they have taken all reasonable steps to ensure the property is electrically safe?

The most relevant laws and regulations that affect England and Wales are:

  • Part P’ building regulations (Electrical Safety in Dwellings) – relevant where business premises have an associated dwelling, for instance a pub.
  • Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 1994.
  • The Plugs and Sockets etc. (Safety) Regulations 1994.
  • Various ‘Health and Safety Executive’ regulations.

Interpretation Of England And Wales Laws And Regulations

  • Laws and regulations are written to be ‘time in-sensitive’, they have different meanings at different points in time.
  • Definition of the term ‘reasonable’ changes over time, what was reasonable last year may not be reasonable this year.
  • The business is responsible for all of the fixed wiring, lighting circuits, electrical sockets within a business.
  • The business is responsible for both ‘fixed’ electrical installations and ‘portable’ electrical appliances.
  • The business is responsible for all electrical appliances brought into the premises by staff, for instance kettles and toasters.

 

Judge Electrical Limited
15 Mulberry Court, Huntington, York, YO32 9TU
Telephone 01904 764845 (Landline), 07919 033113 Mobile)
Email info@judgeelectrical.co.uk
VAT No. 852917405. Company Number 6359328