In the UK many homes are still equipped with an old-style fuse box. At Go2 Electrical we strongly recommend that you upgrade your fuse box for a new style consumer unit that complies with new regulations. This would provide better electrical safety to your property but more importantly, increase fire protection if the unexpected were to happen. All the above gives added peace of mind for the safety of yourself your family or your tenants.
In January 2015, IEE Wiring Regulations (BS7671) Amendment 3 was published. A major change in Amendment 3 concerns consumer units, the term for a modern-day domestic fuse box. New regulation 401.1.201 states that in domestic environments, consumer units and similar switchgear must be constructed from non-combustible material. The most common material used to obtain this regulation is of a steel/metal construction.
Unless fully qualified, please don’t attempt to upgrade your fuse box yourself. All consumer unit replacements are now notifiable work and require to be Part P of the Building Regulations registered as well as be fully certified.
Do I need to upgrade?
Providing your electrical installation is safe and meets the current BS7671 requirements for an electrical installation then you won’t need to upgrade. Of course, it’s very difficult to ascertain this information just by “looking” at your installation without testing, so the best way to check is to have an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) on your property.
There are however some tell-tale signs that you would benefit from upgrading your fuse box, these being:
- You have an old fuse box with a wooden back, cast iron switches, or a haphazard mixture of both – we strongly advise replacing these for your own safety.
- You have decided to rent out your property and are aware your electrics have not been upgraded for several years; Landlords have a duty to periodically get electrical conditioning reports done on their properties every 5 years or change of tenancy.
- You don’t have any provision of residual current devices (RCDs) for wiring buried in the walls, sockets circuits and outlets that may be used to plug in outdoor electrical equipment.
- You are planning a building or improvement project such as a new electric shower, an extension or an attic conversion and additional wiring and new circuits will need to be installed.
Unsafe Electrics could put yourself your family or your tenant’s life in danger.
Don’t take the risk – get a modern Consumer Unit with RCD Protection fitted today.
Landlords must comply with statutory regulations or face significant risks
The Landlord & Tenant Act 1985 and several other statutory regulations require that electrical equipment is safe at the start of every tenancy and maintained in a safe condition throughout the tenancy.
Failure to comply with the Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 1994 and the Consumer Protection Act 1987 is a criminal offence and may result in:
- a fine of £5,000 per item not complying
- six months imprisonment
- possible manslaughter charges in the event of deaths
- tenants may sue you for civil damages
- your property insurance could be invalidated
Electrical accidents happen more often than you think
Information from the Electrical Safety Council reveals the following frightening statistics:
- about 70 people die and 1.2 million are injured in electrical accidents in UK homes each year
- approximately 50% of fires in UK homes are caused by electrical faults (that’s about 21,000 per year)
- almost all electrocutions in the home and 20% of fires with an electrical origin could have been prevented by having RCD protection.
Why do I need RCDs?
Residual Current Device (RCD) is a must-have safety device which switches electricity off in a fraction of a second if you get an electric shock. Old fuse boxes don’t have RCDs and can take significantly longer to switch off electricity – the difference between life and death.
Will I need any other work doing if my electrics are old?
It’s unlikely you will need any other work doing just because your electrics are old. The most common additional work that may be required is earth bonding. It is mandatory under UK wiring rules that earth bonding is present before any electrical work can be undertaken.
- Upgrading to a new 17th edition RCD protected fuse board, will make your home safer, protecting you from the risk of electric shock & electrical fire.
- An RCD is a life-saving device that is designed to either disconnect the supply prior to a shock or drastically reduce the exposure time if you come into contact with an electrical current. 50% of the homes in the UK don’t have an RCD installed putting the occupants at unnecessary risk from electrical accidents.
- A professionally installed & certified 17th edition consumer unit WILL improve your electrical safety.
How much does it cost?
Our prices vary on the size and quantity of consumer units and also the number of circuits connected.
- All replacement consumer units will be of a well-known market leading brand METAL CONSTRUCTION fuse box (now in regulation) with protective devices.
- Labour carried out by one of our qualified NICEIC installers;
- Installation Certificate on completion, which will be registered with your local council and NICEIC.
- 12 months warranty on all parts and workmanship.
Call us on 01978 690 690 / 01244 554 554