Discuss How do I certify when there are no rcds to test in the Electrical Wiring, Theories and Regulations area at ElectriciansForums.net

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I have an elderly client that wants some additional sockets adding to a ring final circuit, some are simple spurs and some will need the ring extending - pretty simple jobs.
she also wants some independent switching in her lounge, an additional light in the hallway with 2 way switching - again, pretty simple job.
The issue/question I have is that there are is no RCD protection whatsoever at the fuseboard. I have mentioned this but as a recommendation but she can’t afford to get the fuseboard changed yet.
so when it comes to testing, how do I certify with no RCD tests? Is this simply a limitation and noted in the comments or am I not permitted to carry out the work without there being an RCD? I know the regs say that RCD protection is required and it also says that can’t do any work that will worsen the state of an existing installatio, which it won’t.
so is it acceptable to do the work such that the finished product will leave the installation in no less a condition than the existing one? Probably a simple answer out there but would like some views please.
The existing installation is a Wylex board with MCBs about 25-30 years old. Oh, and the original installers wired all the earths on the ring final together at each socket and all the cable in the loft is laying loose across the rafters with no clipping at all!! (This actually makes it easier to move/ replace!)
 

Risteard

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30mA RCD additional protection is mandatory for socket-outlets, so no you cannot certify your works without such mandatory protection. Any declaration that the works comply with BS7671:2018 would be bogus after all.
 

Pete999

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I have an elderly client that wants some additional sockets adding to a ring final circuit, some are simple spurs and some will need the ring extending - pretty simple jobs.
she also wants some independent switching in her lounge, an additional light in the hallway with 2 way switching - again, pretty simple job.
The issue/question I have is that there are is no RCD protection whatsoever at the fuseboard. I have mentioned this but as a recommendation but she can’t afford to get the fuseboard changed yet.
so when it comes to testing, how do I certify with no RCD tests? Is this simply a limitation and noted in the comments or am I not permitted to carry out the work without there being an RCD? I know the regs say that RCD protection is required and it also says that can’t do any work that will worsen the state of an existing installatio, which it won’t.
so is it acceptable to do the work such that the finished product will leave the installation in no less a condition than the existing one? Probably a simple answer out there but would like some views please.
The existing installation is a Wylex board with MCBs about 25-30 years old. Oh, and the original installers wired all the earths on the ring final together at each socket and all the cable in the loft is laying loose across the rafters with no clipping at all!! (This actually makes it easier to move/ replace!)
What's wrog with the cpcs being together at the sockets? RFCs serving sockets where the cpc current in normal use exceeds 10ma, then refer to OSG Page 87 section 7.5.3 where cpcs are wired in a ring with separate connections in the socket outlets and at the CU.
 
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Andy78

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All new work must comply with BS7671.
You can't have limitations to your work, limitations are for inspections.
Any departure from the regulations must be recorded but is only permitted if it offers the same level of safety as compliance.
See 132.16 too.
 
The extra lighting will also require additional rcd protection. To record the absence of additional rcd protection as a departure you would have to prove your installation offers no less safety than that currently required by BS7671. You would have a great problem trying to prove this.
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #6
30mA RCD additional protection is mandatory for socket-outlets, so no you cannot certify your works without such mandatory protection. Any declaration that the works comply with BS7671:2018 would be bogus after all.
I realise that, so would I not note it as a departure from the regs as the client doesn’t want it ? It’s a bit like the SPD on a fuse board - if the client doesn’t want to pay for it, it’s noted as a departure?
 

Risteard

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I realise that, so would I not note it as a departure from the regs as the client doesn’t want it ? It’s a bit like the SPD on a fuse board - if the client doesn’t want to pay for it, it’s noted as a departure?
It's not a Departure though - it's a non-compliance, or breach, of the Wiring Regulations.

As pointed out by others BS7671 is clear that a Departure must afford an equivalent degree of safety as strict adherence to BS7671. It is for the likes of new innovations which could not have been included in BS7671 because they didn't exist at the time, but are at least as safe as compliance.

Lack of RCD protection cannot provide equivalent safety as provision of RCD protection.
 

Andy78

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I realise that, so would I not note it as a departure from the regs as the client doesn’t want it ? It’s a bit like the SPD on a fuse board - if the client doesn’t want to pay for it, it’s noted as a departure?
No, you don't understand the regulations properly.
See 120.3
 

telectrix

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if it were just additional sockets, a RCD could be installed after the fuesboard to feed the whole circuit. this would also entail finding any earth faults. as you are doing lights as well, then a CU upgrade is the way forward, unless you can swap MCBs for RCBOs, if customer won't pay, walk away.
 

davesparks

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I realise that, so would I not note it as a departure from the regs as the client doesn’t want it ? It’s a bit like the SPD on a fuse board - if the client doesn’t want to pay for it, it’s noted as a departure?
The difference is that RCDs protect lives and SPDs protect appliances
You can buy new appliances of a surge kills them, you can't buy new people of a shock kills them.
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #11
It's not a Departure though - it's a non-compliance, or breach, of the Wiring Regulations.

As pointed out by others BS7671 is clear that a Departure must afford an equivalent degree of safety as strict adherence to BS7671. It is for the likes of new innovations which could not have been included in BS7671 because they didn't exist at the time, but are at least as safe as compliance.

Lack of RCD protection cannot provide equivalent safety as provision of RCD protection.
Thanks for that - so how do we get around the problem of going to a client who has a damaged socket say that is dangerous due to exposed live parts but they have an old fuse board - should not test after replacing it? Or is that different?
 

Wilko

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how do we get around the problem of going to a client who has a damaged socket say that is dangerous due to exposed live parts but they have an old fuse board - should not test after replacing it?
Hi - it’s ok to replace accessories as a maintenance activity. It’s not ok to change the installation cabling and not comply with current Regs when you are doing that.
 

Midwest

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Thanks for that - so how do we get around the problem of going to a client who has a damaged socket say that is dangerous due to exposed live parts but they have an old fuse board - should not test after replacing it? Or is that different?
It’s difficult to inform a client, especially elderly that they require additional protection, when they just want another socket in the kitchen or lounge, when the other existing sockets don’t have it. They might think you are trying to defraud them. I often use to give them some leaflets from Electrical Safety First, just to show there’s no skullduggery on my part.
Otherwise, I’d just decline the work.
 
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