Posts Tagged ‘compliance’

Commercial electrical testing: What you need to know

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What is commercial electrical testing?

Commercial electrical testing helps to keep your business safe and compliant. Faulty electrical systems or appliances can cause risks of electric shock and burns, fire and explosion.

Under the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989 (EAWR), there is a legal responsibility on both employers and their employees to prevent danger by ensuring that electrical systems and appliances within the workplace are safe, suitable for use and maintained appropriately. Part of this involves the inspection and testing of the electrical systems by a competent person, as well as keeping appropriate records up to date.

Who should carry out the checks?

Inspection and testing will check the condition of all electrical installations and equipment on your premises. Assessing the risk is crucial to maintaining safe working conditions, and this will partly be covered by a company’s health and safety assessment. But some commercial electrical testing should be carried out by a competent person who can provide a legally-recognised electrical test report. This will help show due diligence and compliance with legal requirements.

Our team of experienced and fully qualified electricians offers a comprehensive testing and inspection service to give you peace of mind that every electrical element in your business is working safely and efficiently. During an electrical test of commercial property, the power may need to be turned off. At ECY, we are flexible and can carry out the testing when it is most convenient for your business.

What kind of electrical testing is available?

Commercial electrical testing can cover the following:

PAT testing (portable appliance testing)

This is the testing of any items that can be moved from an electrical supply, such as kettles, photocopiers and vending machines. PAT testing should be carried out by a competent electrician who knows how to properly test the equipment and how to interpret the results. Not every electrical item needs a PAT test and some may not need annual testing.

For more information on PAT testing, click here and here.

Periodic inspection and testing (commonly known as fixed wire testing)

This is a very different test to PAT testing. It covers safety checks on the commercial premises’ main electrical wiring system. It must be carried out every five years by a competent and registered electrician. They will then produce a periodic inspection report – also known as Electrical Condition Report (EICR) – which shows that the installations meet the required British standard for safety, BS7671.

For more information on an electrical report, click here.

Electric City’s fully qualified electricians are experienced in carrying out commercial electrical testing on range of business premises, from offices to hotels, and residential homes to retail sites. To read more about our commercial services, click here http://www.ecyltd.com/commercial-services For more information and advice about how Electric City can help with your commercial electrical testing call us on 07885 331 255 or 0800 0345 240.

PAT testing: Keep your business safe and compliant

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PAT testing (Portable Appliance Testing) is something most businesses are aware of, although many business owners are not entirely sure how it affects them and which appliances have to be compliant.

Low-risk business environments such as offices, shops and care homes can contain a variety of portable electrical appliances which by law must be maintained if they can cause danger in any way.

Portable equipment includes any items that can be moved from an electrical supply. Such appliances generally have a lead and a plug. Examples include kettles, vacuum cleaners, fans, radios, hair dryers, toasters, microwaves, photocopiers, desktop computers and vending machines, as well as extension leads and mobile phone chargers.

Although there are no minimum legal requirements as to how often maintenance should be carried out, a lot of it is really down to common sense. You need to ask yourself how likely each appliance is to become faulty. This may depend on how it is constructed, if it’s being used correctly, if it’s suitable for the job and what the results have been of previous tests.

Don’t forget that all appliances need to be maintained, whether they belong to you or your employees. You are also jointly responsible for any equipment that is used by your employees that has either been leased or provided by a contractor.

How you test your appliances depends on what they are. Most electrical items need PAT testing, although not necessarily every year. Equipment used in clean, dry environments may just need a visual inspection for loose or trapped wires, for example, or for signs of fire or water damage.

One good way of keeping on top of your company’s electrical appliance safety is to write down how often you think each piece of equipment should be checked and keep a record of these tests. You could also label each appliance with the date and outcome of each test. It’s vital, however, that the maintenance interval for each appliance is frequently updated depending on the results of each test.

You should also encourage your employees to use appliances correctly and to check regularly on the equipment and supply cable. Underline to them the importance of making any faults known to you, and make sure you remove faulty or damaged equipment immediately.

If keeping on top of electrical safety at work proves to be a bit overwhelming, don’t panic! As qualified electricians we will inspect your portable electrical appliances, carry out PAT testing and repair items. We’re always happy to give advice so that you know exactly what your business needs to do to comply with the regulations, which appliances need testing and how often.

For more information and advice on PAT testing your business’s electrical equipment, call Electric City on 07885 331 255 or 0800 0345 240.