Electrical safety in your home
We carry out approximately 1,800 electrical inspections each year to ensure we meet legislation and to keep you safe in your home.
A full electrical inspection and test, which results in the completion of an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR), should take place at least every five years, or at change of occupancy, (including voids and mutual exchanges), to confirm the electrical installation is safe for continued use.
What happens during an electrical inspection and test?
1. Each year we identify any properties that are due a test. We contact tenants to arrange a suitable appointment. If no contact can be made, then a letter will be sent with an appointment and the customer can call to re-arrange if not available.
You will be required to be at home to allow access and will need to remain at home whilst the electrician is there.
The electrician will need access to all electrical accessories (sockets and switches etc) where possible. At some point during the inspection, the electricity will need to be isolated and this will be agreed with the customer beforehand.
2. We book half a day (AM or PM) as most inspections will be completed in this time, and if not, a follow on appointment can be booked.
The inspection will find out if:
- any of your electrical installations are overloaded
- there are any potential electric shock risks and fire hazards
- there is any defective electrical work
- there is a lack of earthing or bonding – these are two ways of preventing electrical shocks that are built into electrical installations
3. We will test the ‘fixed’ electrical parts of your property, like the wiring, the plug sockets, and the light fittings in every room, as well as the consumer unit (fuse box). We do not test electrical appliances that can be moved around, such as TVs, white goods, kettles or toasters. We may highlight any unsafe appliances or extension leads and recommend they be unplugged.
We will need access to every room in your property.
There should be no mess on the vast majority of electrical inspections, although there may be occasions where some repair works may be necessary.
4. If the EICR flags up any issues, these will be one of four categories:
C1 - Danger present. Risk of injury. Immediate remedial action required
C2 - Potentially dangerous – urgent remedial action required
C3 – Improvement Recommended
FI - Further investigation required without delay
Any remedial work required to make the electrical installation safe must be completed within a defined time frame by qualified electrical installers. These will be identified, and where possible, completed during the inspection. But if that is not possible, we will arrange a suitable appointment with you. You can view our electrical safety infographic by clicking here.
Here are our top 10 tips for electrical safety in your home:
- Check that you have RCD (residual current device) protection in your fuse box
- Make sure your plug sockets are not overloaded. Electrical Safety First has developed an online “socket calculator” to help you to check that yours are safe: https://www.electricalsafetyfirst.org.uk/guidance/safety-around-the-home/overloading-sockets/
- Ensure plugs and sockets are not damaged
- Check visible cables and leads are in good condition
- Check your light fittings are not visibly damaged and that downlighters are in good working condition
- Check you are not storing combustible materials around your fuse box, electricity meter or electrical intake
- Don’t use the top of the microwave for extra storage
- Never trail cables under carpets or rugs
- Never take mains-powered electrical items into the bathroom
- Always switch off your electrical items when they are not in use
For more information on electrical safety around your home, visit https://www.electricalsafetyfirst.org.uk/guidance/safety-around-the-home/