What Is Fixed Electrical Testing?
For electrical equipment and appliances that deteriorate with age and use, it is fairly straightforward to carry out periodic inspections and testing. But when it comes to the services and systems that conduct electricity around a building, things are a bit more difficult.
This is where fixed electrical testing comes in. But what does this process involve exactly? Here to explain is the UK’s Instrotech, an authorised distributor of a wide range of electrical and environmental test equipment.
Guide to Fixed Electrical Testing
Fixed electrical testing covers all of the hard wiring in a building, which can include items like main panels, distribution boards, lighting, socket outlets, air conditioning, and other permanent plant or fixed fittings. The process involves performing a series of rigorous visual inspections as well as electrical tests on all systems in the building.
Fixed electrical testing may also be known as Electrical Installation Condition Reporting, Periodic Inspection & Testing, Fixed Wire Testing, Hard Wire Testing, Test & Inspection, Fixed Testing, Periodic Testing, and Electrical Testing.
Who is Responsible for Workplace Fixed Testing?
According to Regulation 3 of the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989: “It shall be the duty of every employer and self employed person to comply with the provisions of the Regulations in as far as they relate to matters which are within his control.”
However, Employees Must Also:
Co-operate with his employer so far as is necessary to enable and duty placed on that employer by the provision of the Regulations to be complied with.
Comply with the provision of these regulations in so far as they relate to matters, which are within his control.
How Often should Fixed Testing Take Place?
In order to determine the frequency of fixed testing, the following must be taken into account:
The type of installation
Its use and operation
The frequency and quality of maintenance
The external influences to which it’s subjected
How are Results Recorded?
Fixed electrical testing will result in a Periodic Inspection Report, which should include details of observations and recommendations for actions to be taken.Observations and recommendations made by the inspector will be categorised into one of the following:
Danger present. Risk of injury – requires urgent attention
Potentially dangerous – urgent remedial attention required
What else Will the Report Contain?
In addition to observations and recommendations, an Electrical Installation Condition Report should also contain the following information:
Details of the client and installation
Extent and limitations of the inspection
Supply characteristics and particulars of the installation
Schedule of items inspected and tested
Schedules of circuit details and test results
Summary of the inspection and test
Signed declaration by the contractor
How Will the Workplace Be Disrupted?
Seeing as fixed electrical testing requires the isolation of the electrical supply, there could be a fair amount of disruption to the users in a building. Therefore, carefully planning is almost always required.
This should involve a full survey of an installation prior to any inspection and testing, which can help with discussions between the client and contractor while also ensuring disruption will be kept to a minimum.
So there you have it, the rather complicated subject of fixed electrical testing all put together for you in a nutshell!