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Topic Title: ANOTHER BOX TICKING QUESTION
Topic Summary: CONSUMER UNIT REPLACEMENTS
Created On: 23 January 2013 11:00 PM
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 23 January 2013 11:00 PM
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John Peckham

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I was having a good debate this evening with one of my fellow lecturers at college. He is a very experienced person from industry and education and knows his stuff.

He argued that you should not issue an EIC for a consumer unit replacement as on the schedule of inspections there is a box to tick for "routing of cables in prescribed zones". He correctly pointed out you cannot have a LIM on an EIC inspection form and every box has to have an entry which must be either a tick or an N/A. Given that you cannot inspect cables in walls on a consumer unit change you should issue an EICR.

I argued that you should issue an EIC as the great and the good say so, See the ESC BPG, Also the model forms are not regulations. If he wanted to maintain that argument you could say an EIMWC would be appropriate as it is an alteration not involving the addition of a new circuit. I added that you would be changing the circuit protection so issue an EIC and out N/A in the tick box with " New consumer unit and connection of existing circuits" in the Description and Extent box on the form and tick the "Alteration to an existing installation" box.

I also supported my argument by saying domestic installers could not do EICRs so would be prevented from doing this work.

We both agreed there was no one that you could ask to get a finite definite answer only persons who could give you their opinion.

So I thought I would ask the forum?

-------------------------
John Peckham

http://www.astutetechnicalservices.co.uk/
 23 January 2013 11:05 PM
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Martynduerden

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An EIC covers new work the cables in the wall are not new the EIC does not cover them.

On a Board change routing of cables in prescribed zone is "NA" or a tick if you changed the tails, as no cables are anywhere other than in the CU with the exception of the tails - if you changed them.

The EIC covers the board not the outgoing circuits.

-------------------------
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Martyn.

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 23 January 2013 11:07 PM
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stateit

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Well,

Just to let the cat amongst the pigeons I just filled out a MWC for a CU move (all of 3 feet to an adjoining wall) as no circuit characteristics were changed, and the circuits all complied with the Current Regs.

I notified my governing body out of bloody-mindedness just to see what is said when I bring the matter up at my next appraisal.

NB it was not a CU replacement - just a move. What think YOU ALL?

-------------------------
S George
http://www.sg-electrical.com
 23 January 2013 11:11 PM
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John Peckham

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Martyn

Are you saying you would not inspect any part of the installation only the new consumer unit?

-------------------------
John Peckham

http://www.astutetechnicalservices.co.uk/
 23 January 2013 11:11 PM
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Martynduerden

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Originally posted by: stateit

Well,

Just to let the cat amongst the pigeons I just filled out a MWC for a CU move (all of 3 feet to an adjoining wall) as no circuit characteristics were changed, and the circuits all complied with the Current Regs.

I notified my governing body out of bloody-mindedness just to see what is said when I bring the matter up at my next appraisal.

NB it was not a CU replacement - just a move. What think YOU ALL?


MEIWC it is Nothing installed just modded your inspector will have an opinion which differs from yours though

-------------------------
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Martyn.

Only a mediocre person is always at their best



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 23 January 2013 11:13 PM
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Martynduerden

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Originally posted by: John Peckham

Martyn

Are you saying you would not inspect any part of the installation only the new consumer unit?


No, Personally I would but ONLY to confirm my changes had not detrimentally affected the safety of the circuits Zs for example and IR for nuisance factor.

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Martyn.

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 23 January 2013 11:15 PM
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John Peckham

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Martyn

That is testing I asked about inspection?

-------------------------
John Peckham

http://www.astutetechnicalservices.co.uk/
 23 January 2013 11:22 PM
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Martynduerden

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Originally posted by: John Peckham

Martyn

That is testing I asked about inspection?


So you did, I would suspect certainly in my cases a board change would follow a PIR/EICR - so already inspected.

On the very rare occasion a client wanted just a board change no EICR I would question on what basis, but playing devils advocate what inspection is necessary on work which is existing and not subject to EAWR?

I still say the EIC covers the board not the circuits.

-------------------------
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Martyn.

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 23 January 2013 11:27 PM
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Zs

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John, I think that most of us carry out a full inspection and test at the time of a distribution board change. From my desk, on a DB change, the client gets an EIC without the shedule of inspections ( for new installations only) and and EICR with the Condition report inspection schedule. It is a great deal of paperwork to do but I have found it the only way to overcome the issues you just mentioned in you OP.

I think we are finally coming forward to declare how poor the current Inspection Schedule (new) is. Without a LIM option it is a pretty farcical piece of paper and not worth the ink.

And yet, it is not very much changed from the last form. I'd say that for years we have all been filling in a form in our own way, with our own interpretations. As such, all the stories we hear on here and out in the non-virtual world which tell of electricians failing their annual inspections because of their form-filling become stories of injustice.

Zs
 23 January 2013 11:28 PM
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AJJewsbury

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He argued that you should not issue an EIC for a consumer unit replacement as on the schedule of inspections there is a box to tick for "routing of cables in prescribed zones". He correctly pointed out you cannot have a LIM on an EIC inspection form and every box has to have an entry which must be either a tick or an N/A. Given that you cannot inspect cables in walls on a consumer unit change you should issue an EICR.

On that basis you couldn't issue an EIC for a rewire where all the cables were surface mounted or didn't need to be in zones (e.g. SWA/MICC etc) - which doesn't make sense to me.

If the work being certified didn't involve any cables that should be in zones, then it's just N/A. No problem using an EIC to my mind.

- Andy.
 23 January 2013 11:43 PM
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John Peckham

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Martyn

When you are doing this work for money and part of your business are you saying you are not covered by the EAWR?

So you do a board change for the client with out doing a PIR/EICR do you inspect the old part of the installation?

Zs

So what do you put in the Safe Zones Box for a board change?

Andy

So do you not inspect anything other than the new consumer unit?

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John Peckham

http://www.astutetechnicalservices.co.uk/
 23 January 2013 11:46 PM
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kj scott

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John,
the EIC is the appropriate form for a DB change; the extent of installation covered by the certificate should contain a description to clarify any items on the inspection schedule where inspection has been restricted to the existing installation.

-------------------------
http://www.niceic.biz
 23 January 2013 11:51 PM
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Martynduerden

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Originally posted by: John Peckham

Martyn



When you are doing this work for money and part of your business are you saying you are not covered by the EAWR?


Obviously EAWR applies to me, but not a domestic client, my comment on EAWR was relating to the requirement of a duty holder to proved a safe system thus inspect at regular intervals.

I will be the first to say I don't believe there is any requirement for me to inspect any existing circuits to change the cu.

Zs
Is an EIC valid without a schedual of inspections?

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Martyn.

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 23 January 2013 11:53 PM
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weirdbeard

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Originally posted by: John Peckham



. If he wanted to maintain that argument you could say an EIMWC would be appropriate as it is an alteration not involving the addition of a new circuit. I added that you would be changing the circuit protection so issue an EIC


Hi John, there could be occasions where an existing consumer unit is changed to provide additional rcd protection keeping the same rating of cpd's for existing circuits, which wouldn't be altering the circuit protection, so I would have thought a minor works would be appropriate?

The only reason I can see that it's frowned upon to do an mweic for a consumer unit swap is that it says on the mwc - not suitable for distribution boards or similar- Is a consumer unit considered similar to a DB, bearing in mind they have separate definitions? (
 23 January 2013 11:55 PM
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John Peckham

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KJS

That is my view but my fellow lecturer makes a strong logical argument for his view. i guess the most important thing is to ensure as s far as reasonably practical the installation is safe. The ambiguity gives the assessors on their annual visits something to write down on the assessment form if things don't agree with their personal opinions.

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John Peckham

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 24 January 2013 12:05 AM
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Martynduerden

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Originally posted by: John Peckham

KJS

That is my view but my fellow lecturer makes a strong logical argument for his view. i guess the most important thing is to ensure as s far as reasonably practical the installation is safe. The ambiguity gives the assessors on their annual visits something to write down on the assessment form if things don't agree with their personal opinions.


Just to clarify an EIC is an installation certificate for new works - not a comments form for existing defects,

How can you use it for an inspection of an existing system?

Schedule of inspections and items tested can only relate to the new work for which the certificate relates, the exception being "comments on existing installation" - type away endlessly - I usually write something like "old - see eicr"

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Martyn.

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 24 January 2013 12:08 AM
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John Peckham

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So Martyn you just confine your activities on a board change to the cupboard under the stairs and signor the installation in the rest of the dwelling?

You have agreed with me you are subject to the EAWR when changing a consumer unit how about your duties under Section 3 when you don't inspect the installation and you return the installation to service with exposed live parts?

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John Peckham

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 24 January 2013 12:20 AM
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Martynduerden

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Originally posted by: John Peckham

So Martyn you just confine your activities on a board change to the cupboard under the stairs and signor the installation in the rest of the dwelling?


Not personally, I wouldn't undertake a board change without an EICR. But people do and I doubt they. Could be successfully prosecuted.


You have agreed with me you are subject to the EAWR when changing a consumer unit how about your duties under Section 3 when you don't inspect the installation and you return the installation to service with exposed live parts?


Nope, I agreed that EAWR applied to me personally, I would never be in this situation, inspection may not actuall holing hot all dangers in any case.

I also very much doubt a successful production could be brought from not carrying out an inspection, ma lord "I was engaged to change the consumer unit not wander around the house" "my certificate states the extent of works, and you will note under comments on existing" " it says "none not inspected at client request"

HOWEVER what has this got to do with issuing an EIC for a replacement CU, even if it is inspected the EIC is NOT the place for the inspection findings.

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Martyn.

Only a mediocre person is always at their best



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 24 January 2013 12:29 AM
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John Peckham

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You are quite right the results of your inspections are recorded on the schedule of inspections that must accompany the EIC. Next you will be telling me you don't test the original installation ?

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John Peckham

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 24 January 2013 12:35 AM
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Martynduerden

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Originally posted by: John Peckham

You are quite right the results of your inspections are recorded on the schedule of inspections that must accompany the EIC. Next you will be telling me you don't test the original installation ?


Not sure I follow you there, the schedule of inspections is PART of the EIC and relates to the work listed in the extent box only. It does not relate to the existing installation. That goes on the schedule of inspection on the EICR!

Why would you not test a new installation?

Personally I would expect to see an EICR which recommends the proposed new board.

-------------------------
Regards

Martyn.

Only a mediocre person is always at their best



www.electrical contractors uk.com
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