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I'm going to put my Tin hat on and close the curtains so the Regs police can't arrest me for asking this question again, I can only find old threads pre 18th edition so please advise me if I'm missing something


I've just been watching a guy on Youtube doing a board change who's said that to comply with the 18th edition of the Wiring Regulations you must seal ALL entry holes into a consumer unit regardless of them coming through the bottom, top, sides or rear entry with a suitable intumescent mastic to stop the spread of fire into the fabrication of the building!!!


I personally am NOT aware that anything changed in the 18th Edition to say all entry points have to be fire sealed I've been looking online tonight and can only find write ups from "Wiring Matters"

Stating


Sealing of wiring entries
It is important for the installer to seal all openings into the enclosure or cabinet for cables, conduits, trunking or ducting that remain after the installation of cables - see Figure 6. The intent of the sealing is to ensure that, as far as is reasonably practicable, any fire is contained within the enclosure or cabinet and the escape of flames to the surroundings of the cabinet or enclosure or into conduits trunking or ducting is minimised, as intended by Regulation 421.1.201.
Good workmanship and proper materials must be used, and account must be taken of the manufacturer’s relevant instructions, if any.


Regulation 421.1.201 Does not mention sealing any apertures in a consumer unit with, grommets, glands or sealant and does not mention that the Metal clad board cannot be fitted to a timber backboard. So why is the IET saying we are to be sealing the holes , personally I've been installing all my boards with cables entering from behind and mounting my boards on the existing wooden backboards using a length of stick on trunking as a framework around the consumer unit.


Am I wrong???
 
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Just fill the entire board with expanding foam and then gun round the outer edges with an entire tube of fire proof sealant then smooth over with a builders trowel
 
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Midwest

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When this reg first come out, the guidance was only ‘seal’ to the appropriate IP rating as previously mentioned. Then Wylex started flogging intumescent bags to go inside their CU’s, then the grown ups at the IET came out with that crap about contains a fire etc.

On my very last assessment two years ago, my Elecsa assessor suggested just to follow the IP rating, and don’t worry about mounting on wood.

I suspect the next thing, will be not to use plastic raw plugs to fix the CU to none flammable structure.
 
The world has gone absolutely crazy imo

We are worrying out bloody fire proof foam when there are still 900,000 death trap tumble driers in people homes And miles And miles of flammable cladding still stuck to the outsides of high rises
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #6
When this reg first come out, the guidance was only ‘seal’ to the appropriate IP rating as previously mentioned. Then Wylex started flogging intumescent bags to go inside their CU’s, then the grown ups at the IET came out with that crap about contains a fire etc.

On my very last assessment two years ago, my Elecsa assessor suggested just to follow the IP rating, and don’t worry about mounting on wood.

I suspect the next thing, will be not to use plastic raw plugs to fix the CU to none flammable structure.
The plastic rawlplug was brought up at my last assessment, there’s no concern over them as the wall they’re in will support the clips or consumer unit.

This idea of sealing up all the opening with intumescent sealant seems another cash generator to subsidise the cost of changing to metal consumer units
 

davesparks

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Sealing the entries just makes it awkward for the next person adding or altering circuits.
We are supposed to make allowance for future additions when installing DBs, leave spare ways etc, so stuffing the entries full sticky goo seems counterintuitive.
 

Spoon

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When this reg first come out, the guidance was only ‘seal’ to the appropriate IP rating as previously mentioned. Then Wylex started flogging intumescent bags to go inside their CU’s, then the grown ups at the IET came out with that crap about contains a fire etc.

On my very last assessment two years ago, my Elecsa assessor suggested just to follow the IP rating, and don’t worry about mounting on wood.

I suspect the next thing, will be not to use plastic raw plugs to fix the CU to none flammable structure.
If you will the CU up with water then they never catch fire..... Job done...
 

Spoon

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Of course water will stop the spread of fire, the CU would need to be IP65 rated to hold the water though:)
You put the water in a plastic bags, silly..... Then when there is a fire the bags burst and put out the fire....
 
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You put the water in a plastic bags, silly..... Then when there is a fire the bags burst and put out the fire....
You must work for the London Fire Brigade, what a fantastic idea because the water would then trip the rcd’s and would make the house dead!!
 

Des 56

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Reading the last few posts,it is not wise
I now fear the Iet will take up this combined fire prevention and power isolation strategy
We should be wary of giving ideas to the folks making up the think tank
 

richy3333

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That guys a roaster. Shoves wago boxes in ceilings and reckons they are MF - not the way he does em, they aren’t.
He makes out he’s experienced but often says things that suggests he’s a newbie.
Ignore his ideas.
 
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  • #14
That guys a roaster. Shoves wago boxes in ceilings and reckons they are MF - not the way he does em, they aren’t.
He makes out he’s experienced but often says things that suggests he’s a newbie.
Ignore his ideas.
Who you talking about hope your not talking about me that’s certainly not my workmanship
 
Are we talking about CHris the handyman youtuber sparky plumber builder Tiler plasterer gezza man

 
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Charlie_

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Cable access into the metal consumer unit must maintain the integrity of the non-combustable consumer unit so far as reasonably practicable. This can generally be achieved by the installer ensuring that cable access holes they make in the enclosure do not to leave gaps greater than: · 1.0 mm for the horizontal top surface and · 2.5 mm for all other surfaces of the enclosure that are accessible after installation. For rear cable access, the minimum number of knockout(s) shall be removed and a cable protector fitted; see illustration above. Tests on hager consumer units have indicated that there is no specific need for external fire rated cable glands or intumescent sealing in addition to the guidance below, with respect to achieving a non-combustible enclosure. However this does not preclude the designer/installer from using fire rated cable glands or external intumescent sealing should they consider necessary. Internal intumescent pads shall not be used.
 

buzzlightyear

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Cable access into the metal consumer unit must maintain the integrity of the non-combustable consumer unit so far as reasonably practicable. This can generally be achieved by the installer ensuring that cable access holes they make in the enclosure do not to leave gaps greater than: · 1.0 mm for the horizontal top surface and · 2.5 mm for all other surfaces of the enclosure that are accessible after installation. For rear cable access, the minimum number of knockout(s) shall be removed and a cable protector fitted; see illustration above. Tests on hager consumer units have indicated that there is no specific need for external fire rated cable glands or intumescent sealing in addition to the guidance below, with respect to achieving a non-combustible enclosure. However this does not preclude the designer/installer from using fire rated cable glands or external intumescent sealing should they consider necessary. Internal intumescent pads shall not be used.
well done Charlie I could not put it better me self .
 

Matthewd29

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It really is out of control they will want us to make it fully air tight and pressure test it before were done
 
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  • #26
It really is out of control they will want us to make it fully air tight and pressure test it before were done
I was told initially sometime back that the consumer units need not be sealed because the main accelerant was the plastic CU so the steel CU was enough to stop a spread of fire, my question at the time was if the plastic CU were to be replaced with steel what about the MCB and plastic blanks why are they not being replaced with a fire proof alternative.

The answers I've been told is, the fires start from loose terminals in the tops of MCB's and the flames melt the plastic CU which spreads the fire, so any opening below the top of the CU doesn't need sealed, hence the reason why I bring my cables in through the back knock outs and I only put flexible grommet strip round to stop damage to the outer sheathing.

An alternative I was told about was to install a length of deep trunking along the top of the CU and run all cables into the trunking through the knockout in the top of the CU but I'm skeptical that that would work.

I personally don't like the look of loads of glands poking out the top of a CU I prefer them to come out the back.


OPINIONS OPINIONS OPINIONS!!!!
 

Matthewd29

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I was told initially sometime back that the consumer units need not be sealed because the main accelerant was the plastic CU so the steel CU was enough to stop a spread of fire, my question at the time was if the plastic CU were to be replaced with steel what about the MCB and plastic blanks why are they not being replaced with a fire proof alternative.

The answers I've been told is, the fires start from loose terminals in the tops of MCB's and the flames melt the plastic CU which spreads the fire, so any opening below the top of the CU doesn't need sealed, hence the reason why I bring my cables in through the back knock outs and I only put flexible grommet strip round to stop damage to the outer sheathing.

An alternative I was told about was to install a length of deep trunking along the top of the CU and run all cables into the trunking through the knockout in the top of the CU but I'm skeptical that that would work.

I personally don't like the look of loads of glands poking out the top of a CU I prefer them to come out the back.


OPINIONS OPINIONS OPINIONS!!!!
I would love to meet the people that make these rules. Admittedly I like the metal boards a lot more than the plastic ones as they had a real cheap feel to them but it's getting over the top. Have to be careful with the rest entry through wood because wood burns can't win going to have to carry a sheet of fire board with me now as well as all the other rubbish
 

ipf

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The answers I've been told is, the fires start from loose terminals in the tops of MCB's and the flames melt the plastic CU which spreads the fire, so any opening below the top of the CU doesn't need sealed, hence the reason why I bring my cables in through the back knock outs and I only put flexible grommet strip round to stop damage to the outer sheathing.
Agree. There's nothing wrong with a piece of ply stood off the wall for rear entry...
 
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  • #32
Agree. There's nothing wrong with a piece of ply stood off the wall for rear entry...
I mount my boards on a frame of sticky trunking using longer screws with washers so the plywood is further away from the CU so less chance of scorching or fire, the idea of the metal CU is to take away the accelerant so I don't understand the logic of sealing the knock out making any additional work harder to carry out
 

ipf

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I mount my boards on a frame of sticky trunking using longer screws with washers so the plywood is further away from the CU so less chance of scorching or fire, the idea of the metal CU is to take away the accelerant so I don't understand the logic of sealing the knock out making any additional work harder to carry out
To tell you the truth, I don't do many these days but I've access to various bits of ply and wood machines so it's just make up as required......don't even use grommet strip...make the wood slots smaller than the metal and smooth nicely...no problem. Good ply wood is no fire hazard.
 

Charlie_

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I take it commercial/industrial sparks are better than domestics?

Seeing as they can be trusted with plastic boards
 

Risteard

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I take it commercial/industrial sparks are better than domestics?

Seeing as they can be trusted with plastic boards
Well presumably the assumption is that there are plenty of laws in the workplace to ensure that the installation is maintained adequately, etc. Obviously this isn't always the case particularly with smaller businesses.
 
I mount my boards on a frame of sticky trunking using longer screws with washers so the plywood is further away from the CU so less chance of scorching or fire, the idea of the metal CU is to take away the accelerant so I don't understand the logic of sealing the knock out making any additional work harder to carry out
So in effect, you form a chimney in a plastic flammable material, (I'm assuming plastic as I've never seen sticky back metal trunking), with an opening from the CU into the chimney? Bit like cladding a tower block??
 
If You are going to mount the CU on wood then just paint the wood in a fire retardant paint first.


I paint it in something like this, you can get it cheaper than quoted on the link.
I bought a tin a while back and coated a few sheets of ply, I then just cut out what I need for the CU then touch in the cut edges with the paint.
Its probably a bit over kill, but for a few extra quid it gives me peace of mind. I print off the data sheet to the paint and put it in with the EICR.
 
Why don’t manufacturers just make a ‘19th addition’ non combustion bomb and fire proof surface mounting accessory for domesticated consumer unit wiring.

Kind like a surface wiring patters just much larger and supply with it a tube of flame retardant sealant to caulk in any gaps or holes
 

Midwest

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If You are going to mount the CU on wood then just paint the wood in a fire retardant paint first.


I paint it in something like this, you can get it cheaper than quoted on the link.
I bought a tin a while back and coated a few sheets of ply, I then just cut out what I need for the CU then touch in the cut edges with the paint.
Its probably a bit over kill, but for a few extra quid it gives me peace of mind. I print off the data sheet to the paint and put it in with the EICR.
Why bother, the new CU being metal, means it won't catch fire :)
 
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  • #43
Yeah......but with the class of some of todays terminations...:(…….and some working on 'em...:(:(
Sometime people are over tightening the terminals and they’re damaging the cable connection hence why they want us to us Torque screwdrivers
Why don’t manufacturers just make a ‘19th addition’ non combustion bomb and fire proof surface mounting accessory for domesticated consumer unit wiring.

Kind like a surface wiring patters just much larger and supply with it a tube of flame retardant sealant to caulk in any gaps or holes
why do we just line the CU with asbestos!!
 
Sometime people are over tightening the terminals and they’re damaging the cable connection hence why they want us to us Torque screwdrivers

why do we just line the CU with asbestos!!
Near every site sparks I watch doing a consumer unit , uses an impact driver anyway (and no I’m not joking) annoyingly I can’t find the video but there was a new build sparks on you tube who installed a brand new 17th Ed consumer unit using nothing but an impact driver.

Box it in using asbestos would probably achieve a better fire rating ?
 
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Andy78

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@Reevio Are you the bloke off Youtube? I'm sure he's from around Oxford area?
From his previous posts it would appear that he is.

You'd have thought he'd have had some input of a slightly more technical and insightful nature given his love of speaking in public on such matters.
 

ferg

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To be fair you can only act on the information you have and from the little bit of the video I watched it sounds like he got duff information on his course.
 

Andy78

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To be fair you can only act on the information you have and from the little bit of the video I watched it sounds like he got duff information on his course.
Totally agree. He comes across as one that listens to whatever is said to them then spits it back out without thought. It's a common trait in our industry these days. So much misinformation about. I really think the IET needs to be more proactive with publicly clarifying information related to regulation changes. This could only benefit the industry.
 
I’m glad my videos bring awareness to such grey areas in the industry. This is exactly why I make videos on a public format so they get shared around and discussed. Appreciate any feedback good or bad. Even though some of you guys are damn right nasty without even knowing me.
 
Hi Chris

I am a fan of you videoblogs

I think you do a good job of explaining what you are doing and why you are doing it

Keep up the vids mate
 
Maintaining the fire integrity of a metal consumer unit surely is common sense no?
My jtl guy that did our 18th is also an NICEIC inspector he was very passionate about fire safety to the point we should also be fitting intumescent pads in the back of plastic boxes in stud partitions. A little added protection never hurts anyone and for the sake of £2.89 I will continue to do so.
 
Did this genius of an inspector tell you where in the Regulations that additional fire protection must be put in place. The Regulations state they should be constructed from non-combustible materials. It should be remembered a consumer unit enclosure is not a fire barrier but just a non-combustible enclosure. To manufacture a consumer unit which acts as a fire barrier would not be practical or cost effective.
 

Strima

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As has been mentioned before the CU's are now manufactured from non-combustible material therefore there's nothing to combust therefore fire-sealing is not required.
 

Spoon

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As has been mentioned before the CU's are now manufactured from non-combustible material therefore there's nothing to combust therefore fire-sealing is not required.
What about all the items within the CU that can combust?
 
I can see merit in sealing any large gaps or holes in the top or sides of the board ,
1 to maintain the correct IP rating
2 to improve any lost fire integrity

But I personally think all this fuss about avoiding plastic boxes , plastic clips , plastic wall plugs and plastic glands is ridiculous.
 
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  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #57
Maintaining the fire integrity of a metal consumer unit surely is common sense no?
My jtl guy that did our 18th is also an NICEIC inspector he was very passionate about fire safety to the point we should also be fitting intumescent pads in the back of plastic boxes in stud partitions. A little added protection never hurts anyone and for the sake of £2.89 I will continue to do so.
Hi Chris


Where will this end it’s not a building regulation or more a wiring regulation to fit intumescent pads in drywall boxes, it’s just someone’s take on the regs not actually the regs.

If it was a regulation for fire integrity the edges of the CU would have intumescent seals also the hinged lid would too, most manufacturers have top hinges to stop the spread of fire but the odd manufacturer has bottom hinge with a magnetic catch fire could spread from the front but like I say it’s NOT a regulation to seal it.

Makes no sense to seal everything it makes the job harder for the next man to come along when he’s adding the extension etc

Lee
 
Why bother, the new CU being metal, means it won't catch fire :)
Because I've have OCD's :D

I also worked on a building where a metal control board set on fire inside and the heat was intense enough for the wooden partition next to it to spontaneously com-busted, even though the flames did not escape the metal enclosure. I was quite astonished by this at the time and it stuck in my mind.
 

Pete999

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Because I've have OCD's :D

I also worked on a building where a metal control board set on fire inside and the heat was intense enough for the wooden partition next to it to spontaneously com-busted, even though the flames did not escape the metal enclosure. I was quite astonished by this at the time and it stuck in my mind.
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #60
So in effect, you form a chimney in a plastic flammable material, (I'm assuming plastic as I've never seen sticky back metal trunking), with an opening from the CU into the chimney? Bit like cladding a tower block??
I use the sticky trunking to stand my metal clad consumer unit off the wall or wooden back board so my cables all enter the board through the rear entry holes so that flames from this non existent fire can’t escape the CU, I very rarely knock a knock out of either the sides or top
 

Midwest

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I use the sticky trunking to stand my metal clad consumer unit off the wall or wooden back board so my cables all enter the board through the rear entry holes so that flames from this non existent fire can’t escape the CU, I very rarely knock a knock out of either the sides or top
One thing I like about Hager & Wylex CU's, is they also manufacturer (metal) wall spacers for their products. Not cheap, but look better than anything I could replicate.
 

Midwest

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Maintaining the fire integrity of a metal consumer unit surely is common sense no?
My jtl guy that did our 18th is also an NICEIC inspector he was very passionate about fire safety to the point we should also be fitting intumescent pads in the back of plastic boxes in stud partitions. A little added protection never hurts anyone and for the sake of £2.89 I will continue to do so.
I've posted this vid a few times now, and it is getting a bit old, so the guidance isn't current, but I can't see things have changed that much. 3.55mins discusses CU's & sealing thereof;


I think using sealant of any kind, is a bit of a bodge. A CU by nature will need additions from time to time; its not like sealing a bath, shower etc.
 

Midwest

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Because I've have OCD's :D

I also worked on a building where a metal control board set on fire inside and the heat was intense enough for the wooden partition next to it to spontaneously com-busted, even though the flames did not escape the metal enclosure. I was quite astonished by this at the time and it stuck in my mind.
A larger distribution board in a commercial or industrial setting, might need different considerations; a simple domestic CU does not need all these fire retardant measures.
 

FatAlan

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Last couple of CU's I've done, where the cables come through large rear entry I've sandwiched a piece of intumescent pad between the enclosure and wall/board prior to fixing the enclosure. Ive then cut a cross in the pad, fed the cables through and then moulded the pad back round the cables as they enter to reduce and seal the gap. Not sure if thats better than filling with sealer or worth the effort especially if its a busy box.
 

Midwest

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Last couple of CU's I've done, where the cables come through large rear entry I've sandwiched a piece of intumescent pad between the enclosure and wall/board prior to fixing the enclosure. Ive then cut a cross in the pad, fed the cables through and then moulded the pad back round the cables as they enter to reduce and seal the gap. Not sure if thats better than filling with sealer or worth the effort especially if its a busy box.
Why for so? If the cables came out of a cavity (naughty) perhaps. Just out from the back, I don't see why you should go to that expense.

I'm no longer current, but have you ask your scheme for guidance?

All this extra work cost someone money, and it seems to me to be an unnecessary.
 

FatAlan

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One of the installs was on a board mounted on couple of patterns to allow access from behind. Goes back to previous threads about mounting on wood which numerous meters and CU's seem to have been mounted on over the years.

Must admit the lower specified IP ratings for the side and bottom of enclosures doesn't exactly support a case for making the enclosures sealed enough to prevent a chimney effect as I believe someone mentioned earlier.

If we were serious about reducing the risk of fire due to poor or loose connections perhaps the manufacturers should come up with a design that eliminates having to get a small bit of exposed copper into a barely visible slot and then tighten up a screw!

Some of the kit we are asked to install is utter c**p when it comes to any consideration that has been given in respect of ease or practicality of installation.
 

richy3333

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I’m glad my videos bring awareness to such grey areas in the industry. This is exactly why I make videos on a public format so they get shared around and discussed. Appreciate any feedback good or bad. Even though some of you guys are damn right nasty without even knowing me.
@Reevio - It's somewhat childish to refer to us on this forum as a bunch of old women. You to are a member and therefore by definition must be an old woman also? :)

Here is my feedback, 'good or bad'...

The thing with Youtube is to a certain extent watchers do know you in thatchy know the quality of the work you do and whether it is right or wrong.

I've seen a few of your videos and do applaud you that you have the aptitude to do the videos. You clearly have your sycophants by virtue of some of the comments they make. I watched the videos for entertainment value not for technical content or quality. I've seen you give totally wrong statements/advice in your Youtube comments and again totally wrong information in the videos.

An example that springs to mind is the house where the owner took down a stud wall in the kitchen/lounge area. You jointed the cables using Wago connectors and then ----ed the lot in the ceiling void utilising either a Wagobox or a Wagobox light professing it was mainatenece free. It clearly was no such thing in the manner you had installed it and you could not have ever looked at any Wago literature on how to install the things.

I've also seen you install downlighters way too close to timber joists thinking that is ok to do.

I regret to say that I have a first year apprentice that knows both of the above examples are a not correct.

Can I ask your background because sometimes you are CRS, sometimes HRS. Most of your videos are electrical based but there were some where you did building work. Are you a builder by trade? Did you do an apprenticeship or a Electrical Trainee course?

I don't think the situation surrounding fire sealing is a grey area and other more respected and knowledgeable people on here have already pointed out your errors.

I dont think you make these videos to 'highlight grey areas and so they get shared around and discussed' (my paraphrasing) because if that were the case you'd not be making 'bog standard videos' of domestic rewires et al. How do they shed light on grey areas of the industry? You're a member here. I challenge you to post your 'grey area' videos here first for industry discussion, though I anticipate you won't have the nerve to do so???
 
T

Toneyz

Why don’t manufacturers just make a ‘19th addition’ non combustion bomb and fire proof surface mounting accessory for domesticated consumer unit wiring.

Kind like a surface wiring patters just much larger and supply with it a tube of flame retardant sealant to caulk in any gaps or holes
Because they need to sell us Amd. 1,2 & 3 regs books etc first.
 
I cannot believe the lengths people are going to to fire proof a non fire proof enclosure.
 
@Reevio - It's somewhat childish to refer to us on this forum as a bunch of old women. You to are a member and therefore by definition must be an old woman also? :)

Here is my feedback, 'good or bad'...

The thing with Youtube is to a certain extent watchers do know you in thatchy know the quality of the work you do and whether it is right or wrong.

I've seen a few of your videos and do applaud you that you have the aptitude to do the videos. You clearly have your sycophants by virtue of some of the comments they make. I watched the videos for entertainment value not for technical content or quality. I've seen you give totally wrong statements/advice in your Youtube comments and again totally wrong information in the videos.

An example that springs to mind is the house where the owner took down a stud wall in the kitchen/lounge area. You jointed the cables using Wago connectors and then ****ed the lot in the ceiling void utilising either a Wagobox or a Wagobox light professing it was mainatenece free. It clearly was no such thing in the manner you had installed it and you could not have ever looked at any Wago literature on how to install the things.

I've also seen you install downlighters way too close to timber joists thinking that is ok to do.

I regret to say that I have a first year apprentice that knows both of the above examples are a not correct.

Can I ask your background because sometimes you are CRS, sometimes HRS. Most of your videos are electrical based but there were some where you did building work. Are you a builder by trade? Did you do an apprenticeship or a Electrical Trainee course?

I don't think the situation surrounding fire sealing is a grey area and other more respected and knowledgeable people on here have already pointed out your errors.

I dont think you make these videos to 'highlight grey areas and so they get shared around and discussed' (my paraphrasing) because if that were the case you'd not be making 'bog standard videos' of domestic rewires et al. How do they shed light on grey areas of the industry? You're a member here. I challenge you to post your 'grey area' videos here first for industry discussion, though I anticipate you won't have the nerve to do so???
Give me a call tomorrow we can have a chat
 
All this fuss over pretty much nothing...

If you want to caulk your fuse board then knock yourself out

If you don’t want to caulk it then fine just leave it caulk free
 

ferg

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spot-on best comment in this thread so far .
I'd be pretty Pee'd off if I went to a job to add a circuit and someone had filled the rear entry with sealant for absolutely no reason.

By publishing your point of view as best practice or regulation you are encouraging others to think the same way. Inexperienced sparks and potential customers.

Spreading misinformation by accident is one thing but continuing to do it once you know better is something else.
 
I'd be pretty Pee'd off if I went to a job to add a circuit and someone had filled the rear entry with sealant for absolutely no reason.

By publishing your point of view as best practice or regulation you are encouraging others to think the same way. Inexperienced sparks and potential customers.

Spreading misinformation by accident is one thing but continuing to do it once you know better is something else.
Please don’t exaggerate. Let’s be honest all I’m doing is filling the gap next to the cables that didn’t get filled.
You’d be a better man than me if you could add an extra circuit in a consumer unit mounted to the wall. Without 1 having to cut a patch in the ceiling or wall. 2 having to remove the consumer unit to gain entry.
Let’s be honest there are 2 other available knockouts on the rear of the consumer unit and around 10-12 available knockouts on the top? Appreciate your comment.
 
I use the sticky trunking to stand my metal clad consumer unit off the wall or wooden back board so my cables all enter the board through the rear entry holes so that flames from this non existent fire can’t escape the CU, I very rarely knock a knock out of either the sides or top
The fact you have created a void behind the CU with access for any heat and gases through the rear entry and into the void is, in effect, a chimney, with the possibility of, if gets hot enough, melting or setting fire to the top bit of trunking and therefore improving the chimney effect.

As others have said, I think there is a tendency, because of all the urban myths, to over think what should be a simple install. Just fix it to the wall, or a board, or whatever, that's what it was designed for without any revenue generating add ons from various manufacturers.

It's not supposed to be fire proof. It's designed to contain a fire within if one should occur. If a fire should occur there is not much in there that's going to burn anyway, which was the point in getting rid of the plastic.

Don't over think it and risk making it worst.
 
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  • #82
There is nothing wrong to go above and beyond what BS7671 requires.
Chris was told we are supposed to be sealing all entry points to the CU according The the wiring regulations by the guy running the course but that’s not what’s in the Regulations hence the post
 
Chris was told we are supposed to be sealing all entry points to the CU according The the wiring regulations by the guy running the course but that’s not what’s in the Regulations hence the post
You are spot on with your opening post. Problem here is the people who tutor the courses and scheme assessors feel the need to gild the lily and hence the blind follow the path.
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #84
You are spot on with your opening post. Problem here is the people who tutor the courses and scheme assessors feel the need to gild the lily and hence the blind follow the path.
So true, they should stick to the Regs book and not spread THEIR thoughts on it
 

davesparks

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Maintaining the fire integrity of a metal consumer unit surely is common sense no?
My jtl guy that did our 18th is also an NICEIC inspector he was very passionate about fire safety to the point we should also be fitting intumescent pads in the back of plastic boxes in stud partitions. A little added protection never hurts anyone and for the sake of £2.89 I will continue to do so.
A metal consumer unit doesn't have 'fire integrity' to start with, so it's pretty hard to maintain something which doesn't exist! Metal CU's are manufactured from a non combustible material, this is very different from being fire rated.
If something does have a fire rating then it will have been tested and certified as such, and will have the details of this in the manufacturers instructions. If it is fire proof it will have a specific duration which it will remain fireproof for, usually 30,60 or 90 minutes. Nothing remains fireproof forever, nor will it remain fire proof if exposed to a high enough temperature.

Intumescent pads are required only when the back boxes are fitted in a wall which forms a fire barrier. You can generally tell the difference because it will be specified on the architects drawings or usually because it's a double thickness of 15mm plasterboard.
 
A larger distribution board in a commercial or industrial setting, might need different considerations; a simple domestic CU does not need all these fire retardant measures.
I never once said domestic Cu's do require it, I said I chose to do so. It maybe completely unnecessary, useless, pointless or what ever else people's opinions might be, I don't particularly care. I do what I feel is right and what helps me sleep at night. I lost a relative in a house fire many years back so I'm a little more sensitive to fire risk than maybe most.

The regs are there as a guide for at the very least the minimum requirements to make an install safe. If an installer chooses to do something that they feel improves the safety/integrity of an install and it does not violate the standards set, then that's their prerogative.

Some folk might change their view if they got their fingers burnt (excuse the pun):)
 

Midwest

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I never once said domestic Cu's do require it, I said I chose to do so. It maybe completely unnecessary, useless, pointless or what ever else people's opinions might be, I don't particularly care. I do what I feel is right and what helps me sleep at night. I lost a relative in a house fire many years back so I'm a little more sensitive to fire risk than maybe most.

The regs are there as a guide for at the very least the minimum requirements to make an install safe. If an installer chooses to do something that they feel improves the safety/integrity of an install and it does not violate the standards set, then that's their prerogative.

Some folk might change their view if they got their fingers burnt (excuse the pun):)
I'm sorry you've lost a loved one due to a fire, condolences.

But as has been already said, some are interpreting this now old'ish regulation, with their own take on it. They are not the only ones, some manufacturers are doing it as well.

A CU is not a fire hazard, when installed properly, it will not spontaneously combust. All this reg has done, is remove a source of fuel from a potential fire. That was what was conceived when this reg was made, but now it has be conceived by some to be a containment of a potential fire. Ridiculous really, with an open aperture for devices & insecure lid.
 

davesparks

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I lost a relative in a house fire many years back so I'm a little more sensitive to fire risk than maybe most.

The regs are there as a guide for at the very least the minimum requirements to make an install safe. If an installer chooses to do something that they feel improves the safety/integrity of an install and it does not violate the standards set, then that's their prerogative.

Some folk might change their view if they got their fingers burnt (excuse the pun):)
Was this fire started by an electrical fault?

The point is that while the installer may feel like they are going above and beyond the requirements and making it safer than the minimum standards they are likely achieving absolutely nothing other than wasting time and materials. Also they often make the issue worse by misrepresenting their efforts as a requirement or a safety improvement they are neither.

This leads to problems down the line as people have an annoying habit of believing hearsay and gossip over things written in black and white in the regulations. Just look at the number rof things which get picked up on EICRs which are non-issues.
 

richy3333

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Give me a call tomorrow we can have a chat
Body swerve and cop out eh?! I see no reason that you can’t put your response on here for the forum members to read?

I did try calling but after 437 guesses at your number I had to give up :( However I’m not really that keen on talking to sassanachs ;)
 

richy3333

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Was this fire started by an electrical fault?

The point is that while the installer may feel like they are going above and beyond the requirements and making it safer than the minimum standards they are likely achieving absolutely nothing other than wasting time and materials. Also they often make the issue worse by misrepresenting their efforts as a requirement or a safety improvement they are neither.

This leads to problems down the line as people have an annoying habit of believing hearsay and gossip over things written in black and white in the regulations. Just look at the number rof things which get picked up on EICRs which are non-issues.
Agreed. And who pays for all this extra unnecessary work - the customer I guess.
 
Body swerve and cop out eh?! I see no reason that you can’t put your response on here for the forum members to read?

I did try calling but after 437 guesses at your number I had to give up :( However I’m not really that keen on talking to sassanachs ;)
No I will answer in due course that’s not a problem just wanted to talk to you personally as your comment was aimed personally at me and not the issue of fire sealing a consumer unit.
 

DPG

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Can't really see the need for personal phone calls to be honest.
 

richy3333

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Can't really see the need for personal phone calls to be honest.
@DPG Think he wants a date o_O That or some proper training :)

Cant see why he can't answer the questions.

He called us all a bunch of old women, thats personal comment on everyone. Perhaps every member of the forum should ring him
 
@DPG Think he wants a date o_O That or some proper training :)

Cant see why he can't answer the questions.

He called us all a bunch of old women, thats personal comment on everyone. Perhaps every member of the forum should ring him
Ahhh your in Scotland explains a lot.
 
Was this fire started by an electrical fault?

The point is that while the installer may feel like they are going above and beyond the requirements and making it safer than the minimum standards they are likely achieving absolutely nothing other than wasting time and materials. Also they often make the issue worse by misrepresenting their efforts as a requirement or a safety improvement they are neither.

This leads to problems down the line as people have an annoying habit of believing hearsay and gossip over things written in black and white in the regulations. Just look at the number rof things which get picked up on EICRs which are non-issues.
The fire in the control board was caused by a poor connection. The fire at my Aunt's was caused by a faulty appliance.

I don't disagree with you! there is nothing worse than someone stating something is a requirement when this is not so.

I do what I do for my own peace of mind, whether its a waste of time or not does not concern me because if it helps me sleep at night then its worth the effort.
For example my partner goes around the house and switches all the sockets off and unplugs everything that can be. Its probably over kill but it gives her peace of mind.
 

richy3333

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Ahhh your in Scotland explains a lot.
Ahhh your in Englandshire explains a lot.

Touche!

Can't answer some simple questions, has various videos showing non compliant work and doesn't like it when it's pointed out. Undertaking unnecessary work (and no doubt billing the customer). Childish comments vis vis 'bunch of old women' and now a dumb attempt at a veiled racist joke...

I think I have your measure :p

And to save you the bother - yes i wear a skirt, no I don't wear pants, yes I have a beard, yes I'm ginger (collar and cuffs), yes I eat intestines, yes I shag sheep (but not my own as that would be incest). Yes I like a pint of heavy and a dram of the uisge bertha. Yes I fancy the 'Sturge' (even if she looks like wee Jimmy Crankie) and yes I believe in independence.

Over to you now, lets hear your worst Chris...
 

richy3333

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The fire in the control board was caused by a poor connection. The fire at my Aunt's was caused by a faulty appliance.

I don't disagree with you! there is nothing worse than someone stating something is a requirement when this is not so.

I do what I do for my own peace of mind, whether its a waste of time or not does not concern me because if it helps me sleep at night then its worth the effort.
For example my partner goes around the house and switches all the sockets off and unplugs everything that can be. Its probably over kill but it gives her peace of mind.
I'm really sorry to read your experiences. Thats awful. I dont think what you and your partner do is overkill. If it makes you feel safer then thats only a positive thing.
 

Spoon

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yes I shag sheep (but not my own as that would be incest).
lmao.... thanks for that comment.... made my day... couldn't stop laughing...
 

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