Frequently Asked Questions
Below you’ll find answers to the questions we get asked the most about.
What is an EICR and when is it required?
An Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) looks at the condition of all the electrical installations in your home and business to make sure it is safe for continued use. By electrical installations, we mean, for example, the fuse board (consumer unit), wiring, plug sockets and light switches. In fact, anything connected to the hard-wired electrics.
The main aims of an EICR are:
- To record the results of the inspection and testing, making sure the electrical installation is safe to be used until the next inspection (following any work needed to make it safe)
- Find and report any damage and wear and tear that might affect safety
- Find anything concerning within the electrical installation that does not meet the IET Wiring Regulations
- Help find anything that may cause electric shocks and high temperatures
- Provide a record of the installation at the time the inspection was undertaken and for any future inspections.
The report will detail any observed damage, deterioration, defects and dangerous conditions concerning the electrical installations in the property. It will also highlight any non-compliances with the current safety standards that could put you and your property at risk. If anything dangerous, or potentially dangerous, is found, the report will return an ‘unsatisfactory’ result, meaning that remedial action is required to ensure that the property is not deemed unsafe.
If the report includes anything dangerous or potentially dangerous it will be declared ‘unsatisfactory’ and require that remedial work is carried out immediately. If any advisories are found where further work is to be completed we will be happy to provide you with a free, no obligation quote.
Your electrics should be tested every:
- 10 years if you are in an owner-occupied house
- 5 years if you are in a rented home (this responsibility falls on your landlord)
- 3 years if you own a caravan or motor home
- 1 year if you have a swimming pool
You should have an EICR carried out if:
- A property is being prepared to be let out
- You are planning to sell the property or buying a previously occupied property
Do you need a replacement fuse board?
Older fuse boards (also known as fuse boxes or consumer units) are prone to malfunctioning with considerable impact on the electrics in your home or business premises. Flickering lighting, unresponsive sockets or switches and power-cuts, are some of the signs of fuse board deterioration.
If your current electrical installation is safe and meets regulations then you won’t need to upgrade, however, it can be very difficult to work this out without any testing. The best way to make an assessment is to have an electrical inspection carried out by one of our team.
MSF Electrical will install a metal fuse board with full RCD protection (Residual Current Device) along with Surge Protection and Arc Fault Detection where necessary. There are many reasons to install a new fuse box, and a RCD is one of them. It is potentially lifesaving in an event where someone touches a live wire. Combine with Surge Protection and Arc Fault Detection to further increase safety and reduce the risk of electrical fires.
Once we have replaced the fuse board we undertake a full testing of your electrical circuits and points to ensure they are working and safe. At completion we would issue you with an Electrical Installation Report. Ensuring that your electrician is suitable qualified is very important as badly fitted installations can be hazardous. Only choose SELECT qualified electrical contractors to work on a fuse board
Having a fuse board replacement carried out is a smart move for several reasons:
- Make your home a safe environment for you and your family, reducing the risk of both electric shock and electrical fires.
- Increase the energy efficiency of your home with a brand new fuse board.
- Ensure your home is in compliance with current electrical regulations.
What are the risks of an out-of-date fuse box?
Accidents involving electrics still happen, and having an old, unsafe fuse board increases the risk. Electrical Safety Council statistics reveal:
- Around 70 people die and 1.2 million people are injured as a result of electrical accidents in UK homes each year
- Around half of all fires in UK homes each year are caused by an electrical fault.
- Almost all electrocutions that occur in homes and around 20% of fires with an electrical origin could have been prevented by having RCD protection in place.
Smoke Alarm Guidance
Since February 2019 ALL homes either private or rented must have interlinked smoke and heat alarms installed. They can be long life battery or mains powered provided that they are all interlinked. The Scottish Government has issued guidance for fire and smoke alarms in Scottish homes to make sure that all homes are protected by 2021.
The Scottish Government has issued landlords with guidance on fire detection in private rented properties. There are more than 6000 fires detected in homes in Scotland each year with around 50 deaths and 1300 injuries resulting from these fires.
The Domestic Technical Guidance Handbook states the following:
- Smoke alarms in every circulation space on each storey, such as hallways and landings
- Smoke alarms installed in the room most frequently used for general daytime living purposes (e.g. living rooms or every bedroom for rented HMO)
- Heat alarms installed in every kitchen
- All smoke and heat alarms should be interlinked
- Carbon monoxide alarms to be fitted where there is a fuel burning appliance or a flue
- This applies to ALL homeowners and landlords
Why Smoke Alarms and Heat Alarms are Important
According to national statistics, fires in homes which have installed hard wired smoke alarms are discovered more rapidly (less than 5 minutes) after ignition; and are associated with lower death rates.
If you need to install mains wired smoke alarms into your property then contact us. We have years of experience and will ensure that your property will have the right detection systems in place.