Electrical Safety Inspections Regulations

New regulations came into force on 1 June 2020 and apply to all new tenancies in England from 1 July 2020.

It could be costly if you fail to comply with local authorities being responsible for the enforcement and financial penalties up to £30,000.

Thanks to Bill Stiles from Adept Electrical – http://www.adeptelectrical.co.uk/ for this simple myth busting session on the new electrical standards. If your electrician has told you that you need a new fuseboard then watch this video first.

These new regulations require landlords to have the electrical installations in their properties inspected at least every 5 years and tested by a person who is qualified and competent. Landlords will also have to provide a copy of the electrical safety report to their tenants as well as to the local authority if requested.

For most landlords in the private rented sector this will not require a change in behaviour. The majority of landlords already check their installations regularly so they can provide the safest homes possible. However to ensure every landlord can comply with these regulations, NAPIT have produced the following guidance on the requirements.

So, what do the regulations say?

Private landlords must ensure every electrical installation in their residential premises is inspected and tested at intervals of no more than 5 years by a qualified and competent person. So look for someone part of NAPIT, NICEIC, Benchmark, OFTEC, STROMA, BESCA, ELECSA and APHC

The regulations apply in England to all new specified tenancies from 1 July 2020 and all existing specified tenancies from 1 April 2021.

Following the inspection and testing, a private landlord must:

  • Obtain a report from the person conducting that inspection and test, which gives the results of the inspection and test and the date of the next inspection and test.
  • Supply a copy of that report to each existing tenant of the residential premises within 28 days of the inspection and test.
  • Supply a copy of that report to the local housing authority within 7 days of receiving a request in writing for it from that authority.
  • Retain a copy of that report until the next inspection and test is due and supply a copy to the person carrying out the next inspection and test.
  • Supply a copy of the most recent report to any new tenant of the specified tenancy to which the report relates before that tenant occupies those premises; and any prospective tenant within 28 days of receiving a request in writing for it from that prospective tenant.

What Report Should I be asking for?

The regulations just refer to a report being obtained by the person conducting the inspection and test. Typically, an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) is used within the industry for this purpose.

An Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) is a report carried out to assess the safety of the existing electrical installation within a property and is used to describe its condition. Parts of the system that are reported on include consumer units, protective bonding, lighting, switches and sockets etc. Its purpose is to confirm as far as possible whether or not the electrical installation is in a safe condition for continued service.

The EICR will show whether the electrical installation is in a ‘satisfactory’ or ‘unsatisfactory’ condition and will detail a list of observations affecting the safety or requiring improvements.

These observations will be supported by codes.

Unsatisfactory Codes are:

C1 – Danger present, risk of injury, immediate remedial action required
C2 – Potentially Dangerous, urgent remedial action required
FI – Further investigation required
A Satisfactory Code is:

C3 – Improvement recommended

Does my electrical installation need to comply with the 18th edition of the Wiring Regulations?
No- not if it is still deemed to be safe. The 18th edition of the Wiring Regulations states: “existing installations that have been installed in accordance with earlier editions of the regulations may not comply with this edition in every respect. This does not necessarily mean that they are unsafe for continued use or require upgrading”.

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