An RCD, or residual current device, is a life-saving device which is designed to prevent you from getting a fatal electric shock if you touch something live, such as a bare wire. It can also provide some protection against electrical fires
A miniature circuit breaker is used in new constructions instead of the older types of fuses. Circuit breakers are small devices used to control and protect the electrical panel and the other devices from overflowing of electrical power. They are used to maintain and ensure safety and quality of the energy provided.
Electrical safety checks are commonly known as 'periodic inspection' or 'electrical installation condition reports'. An electrical inspection report will detail any observed deterioration, defects, dangerous conditions and any non-compliances with the present-day safety standard which might give rise to danger. These items will be categorised in terms of safety and which ones pose an immediate risk.
As the Landlord of the property you have a 'duty of care' to your tenant and must ensure that the installation is safe when they enter the property and that it is maintained throughout their tenure.
The Landlords and Tenants Act (1985) requires that the electrical installation in a rented property is:
- safe when a tenancy begins and maintained in a safe condition throughout the tenancy.
We would highly recommend that you get a registered electrician to carry out an Electrical Condition Report (EICR) on any property you intend to let.
Daily we see dangerous situations in rented properties, with things like broken sockets, exposed live conductors, out-of-date non-RCD consumer units, and missing potential earth bonding to name but a few.
Simply ask yourself would you be happy to let your family live there?
Electrical bonding is the practice of intentionally electrically connecting all exposed metallic items not designed to carry electricity in a room or building as protection from electric shock. If a failure of an electrical insulation occurs, all bonded metal objects in the room will have substantially the same electrical potential, so that an occupant of the room cannot touch two objects with significantly different potentials. Even if the connection to a distant earth is lost, the occupant will be protected from dangerous potential differences.
The Part P requirement is that: "Reasonable provision shall be made in the design and installation of electrical installations in order to protect persons operating, maintaining or altering the installations from fire or injury.
NICEIC is the UK's leading voluntary regulatory body for the electrical contracting industry. It has been assessing the electrical competence of electricians for nearly sixty years and currently maintains a roll of over 26,000 registered contractors.
A 'split load' arrangement is used where circuits are protected by one of two RCD's. Circuits are generally split by load or balanced across the two RCD's equally for example RCD one might have the kitchen sockets, the upstairs lights, the immersion, RCD two might have house sockets, downstairs lights, and the shower.
The Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations 2015 came into force on the 1st of October 2015. These regulations require a smoke alarm to be installed on every storey of the premises on which there is a room used wholly or partly as living accommodation. A carbon monoxide alarm must be installed in any room which is used wholly or partly as living accommodation and contains a solid fuel burning appliance.
Private sector landlords are required from 1 October 2015 to have at least one smoke alarm installed on every storey of their properties and a carbon monoxide alarm in any room containing a solid fuel burning appliance (eg a coal fire, wood burning stove). After that, the landlord must make sure the alarms are in working order at the start of each new tenancy.
The requirements will be enforced by local authorities who can impose a fine of up to £5,000 where a landlord fails to comply with a remedial notice.