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Topic Title: Electrical High Level Maintenance.
Topic Summary: In Rented Accommodation.
Created On: 04 October 2017 10:29 AM
Status: Read Only
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 04 October 2017 10:29 AM
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Posts: 3618
Joined: 20 February 2014

Mornin All,
I have noted comments on this forum regarding the positioning of new consumer units above w.c. bowls in the downstairs w.c. This makes access for testing etc. difficult. I was in an old refurbished building yesterday that is now self contained flats. This former Victorian hotel has very high ceilings. The consumer units are up at ceiling level, and I had to stand on a pair of 7 tread steps to reach one. Very inconvenient for the tenants as most will not possess a pair of steps if the main switch R.C.D. trips off.

Also there are many high level recessed L.E.D. lights. Years ago a tenant could easily replace an old tungsten light bulb if it blew. Nowadays even if the ceilings are low, it is a bit more challenging to replace a faulty recessed L.E.D. GU10 lamp. Normally the house owner has to do it themselves or employ somebody to do it. Many tenants are not practically minded.

Has modern technology really made things better. It seems that in many cases it has increased costs and made things more difficult..

 04 October 2017 10:34 AM
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I don't agree in the slightest with CUs above the cludgey - and certainly not with your example of at the ceiling line.

How do these decisions get justified with regard to CDM regs (never mind common sense)?
 04 October 2017 01:29 PM
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I usually start swearing when pointed towards the small downstairs toilet for the CU. Invariably at ceiling level without enough space to fit a small step ladder and the need to cover everything with thick dust sheets to prevent all the nice expensive porcelain being damaged by a dropped screwdriver. Almost impossible for anyone who is not completely fit to reset a breaker/MCB.

But it is not a new problem. Replaced a consumer unit that was under the stairs on a 60's build. Easy you think until I say the stairs turned 90degrees after three steps and the CU was hard up against the small platform on the turn and only accessible by laying on my back and sliding through a small door. I took the steps out to extend the cables to a more convenient location.

The need for good access was brought home to me by my partially sighted father being unable to reset a MCB on his CU which had been installed on the ceiling in an old house with high ceilings. Even prodding it with his walking stick was ineffective. So he was left in darkness until someone visited.
 04 October 2017 07:51 PM
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The property my wife has bought as an investment has a digital electricity meter mounted on the original late 1950's meter board in the cupboard under the stairs. Even though there is a window to this cupboard, to read the digits you need both a torch and to lie down on the floor, otherwise you cannot tell the difference between a 1 and a 7 and an 8 can look like a 6.


PS: This "project" reminds me of the phrase my flying instructor told me. "How do you make a little money out of aviation? Answer, start with a lot of money"

Clive S Carver GCGI IEng MIET MITP

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