Inspection & Test

What Is inspection and Test?

A Periodic Inspection is an inspection on the condition of an existing electrical installation, to identify (in order of priority) any deficiencies against the national safety standard for electrical installations.
A periodic inspection will:

  • Reveal if any of your electrical circuits or equipment is overloaded

  • Find any potential electrical shock risks and fire hazards in your electrical installation

  • Identify any defective DIY electrical work

  • Highlight any lack of earthing or bonding

Tests are also carried out on wiring and associated fixed electrical equipment to check that it is safe.

Why should i Have an Inspection and test?

Every electrical installation deteriorates with use and age. It is important for the person responsible for the maintenance of the installation to be sure that the safety of users is not put at risk, and that the installation continues to be in a safe and serviceable condition.

According to Government statistics, each year on average 10 people die and about 750 are seriously injured in accidents involving unsafe electrical installations in the home.

When should I get an inspection and test done?

It is recommended that periodic inspection and testing is carried out at least every:

  • 10 years for a domestic installation
  • 5 years for a commercial installation
  • 3 years for caravans
  • 1 year for swimming pools

Other instances when a periodic inspection should be carried out are:

  • When a property is being prepared to be let
  • Prior to selling a property or when buying a previously occupied property
  • Where there is reason to believe that damage has been cause to the building such as flooding or fire.

Pat Testing

What Is potable appliance testing (Pat)?

PAT testing is short for Portable Appliance Testing and is the recognised way for companies and businesses to ensure that their electrical equipment is safe for use by their staff and members of the public who enter their premises.

Why should I get my electrical equipment Pat Tested?

There is currently no strict legal requirement for PAT testing. The Government however has put regulations into place that pertain to the maintenance of electrical appliances and the most effective way to ensure that these regulations are met is through PAT testing.

The UK Health and Safety Executive along with insurance companies will expect you to perform PAT testing to ensure that you are compliant with certain regulations including:

  • Health and Safety at Work Act of 1974
  • The Electricity at Work Regulations of 1989
  • The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations of 1998
  • The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations of 1999

When should I get my electrical equipment Pat Tested?

In order to determine how often you should have your appliances tested, you should bear in mind a few different factors:

  1. Equipment that is used more should be tested more frequently. This equipment is likely to suffer less damage than that used regularly.
  2. If people using equipment report any damages as they become noticeable, there is less chance of a major hazard. If equipment regularly receives damage or abuse that is not reported then inspections and testing are required more frequently.
  3. The type of equipment in question is a major factor in determining PAT testing frequency. Hand held appliances are more likely to become damaged than those that are stationary. Class 1 appliances carry the greatest risk of danger and should be tested more often.

Although there are no requirements for PAT testing frequency, there are recommendations: