Gaining an Electric Certificate
If you are a landlord, or you are looking to sell your home, gaining an electric certificate can provide you with peace of mind that your circuits, equipment etc. are safe enough to use. During the certification process, experts will conduct an in-depth survey of all electrical circuits, plugs and the fuse board in your property using specialist equipment.
The process of gaining an electric certificate usually takes around half a day - although this will differ depending on the size of your property. Also, some assessments will be slightly quicker and easier than others, depending on whether or not any faults or issues are found and the number of electrical circuits that you currently have in your property.
When you are looking to gain an electric certificate - always check that the electrical company/engineer is NICEIC registered and that they also use Red 6 page written NICEIC certificates. Many companies will use Green certificates when performing inspections- these are not the same and can be purchased by virtually anyone from an electrical wholesaler.
If you choose a company or engineer who uses Green certificates, the chances are that they are not registered - and this could make your insurance void. In a worst case scenario, they could also leave your electrics in a dangerous condition, and you wouldn't know anything about it.
And why is it so important to get an electric certificate? As with many other components - circuits, electrical equipment and cables will experience natural wear and tear over time. Your house may have problems that you can't see, behind walls or under flooring - for that reason, regular testing is recommended.
When undertaking an inspection, engineers will usually carry out a Periodic Inspection Report. This means that an electrical installation will be checked thoroughly and each area will be assigned with a specific code of safety. Using this process, the findings of an inspection can be documented in detail. The coding system generally uses the numbers from 1 to 4 to rate the safety of each installation and determine any areas where action is required.
Here are the codes used during the assessment process in the UK:
- Code 1 -the installation requires urgent attention
- Code 2 -the installation requires further improvement
- Code 3 -the installation requires further attention
- Code 4 -the installation does not comply with the British Standard 7671
The above testing will identify any parts or circuits that are overloaded, could potentially be a risk for electrical shock and/or a fire risk hazard and any work required to make a part or circuit safe. Finally, testing will be carried out on fixed point appliances and plug sockets to ensure that you receive a thoroughly detailed test report.