All electrical installations deteriorate with age and use and so should be periodically tested to ensure they are safe for continued use. Periodic Inspections are the electrical equivalent of a Car MOT.
Purpose of Periodic Inspections
The purpose of a periodic inspection is to gain an engineering eye view of the installation and to determine whether it is safe for continued use including:
- where automatic disconnection (ADS) is used such as Circuit Breakers and RCDs the required disconnection times can still be met. Such that in the event of a fault the system will disconnect within the required time;
- confirming that the installation has not deteriorated to the point of potential risk; confirm that the installation is not damaged and is safe for continued use;
- and identifying any defects or departures from the current regulations and areas for improvement.
Reasons for performing Periodic Inspections
In addition to standard legislation, such as EAWR regulation 4 and the Building Regulations Part P, some licensing and/or contract conditions such as mortgages, insurance or landlords licensing will require that an electrical installation is tested in the following circumstances:
- a change of occupancy (sale, purchase, letting) or change of use.
- if an installation has been subject to damage or undocumented alterations/additions.
- regularly, which for a domestic home is 10 years and a rented property every 5 years. It’s 3 years for a caravan and every year for a swimming pool.
How much do they cost?
An EICR costs from around £180 inc VAT depending on the size of the house and number of circuits. Upon completion you will receive an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR). In the report you receive there is a section on observations, much like a car MOT. Each observation is given a code:
- C1 – Immediate risk of injury or death e.g. exposed live wires because of a broken socket or missing light fitting.
- C2 – Potential risk of I/D during fault conditions. The system is safe as it stands but there is increased risk of ID if/when the system goes into fault e.g. An RCD that fails to operate when tested.
- C3 – Recommended improvements at a convenient and cost efficient time.
- FI – Further Investigation required.
We are not allowed to code any issues unless there is a BS7671 regulation that can be applied to it, so we may make additional professional recommendations on the invoice or in the covering email/letter.
To get a report deemed satisfactory, as required by most insurance and mortgage companies, all Code 1s and 2s must be addressed with remedial work. There will be a charge for all remedial work, except in exception circumstances.
However, don’t be put off from having a EICR completed because of worries about costs. We will discuss with you and produce a schedule of works to address the required remedial works over a sensible period of time, and most insurance companies look more sympathetically at any claim within this period than in the absence of any report.
It’s better to be aware of potential dangers in your home than to leave them and regret it.
Further Information If you would like further information on EICRs then you at: