What is an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR)?
(Formerly known as periodic inspection reports or PIR.)
An inspection and series of test's to make sure your electrical installation continues to conform to the national safety standard. An Electrical Installation Condition Report will reveal if any of your electrical circuits or equipment are overloaded and therefore be unsafe to use.
The Electrical Installation Condition report Edinburgh (EICR Edinburgh) will also uncover any potential electric shock risks or fire hazards, identify any defective electrical work and also highlight any lack of earthing or bonding conductors.
Within a domestic environment you must have your main gas supply and main water supply earthed and connected into your consumer unit / fuse board. The report also provides a timescale of urgency on which remedial action should be taken. The test does not include any repair to the electrical system. Once you have the report you can budget for remedial work or additional investigation.
These reports can also be useful for determining the condition of an electrical system before purchasing a property. Tests are also carried out on wiring and fixed electrical equipment to check that it is safe. A schedule of circuits will also be provided, which is invaluable for a property.
Why do I need an Electrical Installation Condition Report?
Electrics deteriorate with use and age - and electricity can be deadly. So it’s vital that people aren’t put at risk. 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 safe.
After the Electrical Installation Condition Report has been carried out our electrician will estimate the time of when the next report should be carried out, this is usually around 5 years, but all depends on the condition of the installation.
Other instances when a periodic inspection report should be carried out are, if a property is being let out or before selling a property or when buying a previously occupied property.
What is involved in a Electrical Installation Condition Report ?
Firstly and most importantly an inspection of the electrics is carried out. Are there signs of damage, wear and tear or ageing components? The consumer unit or fuse board, main supply, earthing, sockets, switches and light fittings are checked to make sure the cables supplying them are installed properly and are suitable for the intended purpose and continued use.
Cables that are concealed in walls under floors or in conduit or trunking however are not inspected, as this would not be practical. Any observations that are made during the inspection are noted and given a code, listed below:
- Code 1: Requires urgent attention
- Code 2: Requires improvement
- Code 3: Requires further investigation
- Code 4: Does not comply with the current British Standard BS7671 - this does not mean it is dangerous.
Your report will include details of any deviations from current standards together with a list of any remedial work deemed necessary. If required we will quote for remedial works, but you are under no obligation to get this work done by ourselves.
Just because it WORKS, It doesn't mean it's SAFE!
Who should do it and what happens?
A suitably qualified electrician, who will check the electrics against the national safety standard, should carry out all periodic inspections. The inspection should meet BS 7671 – Requirements for Electrical Installations (IEE Wiring Regulations). That’s the technical name for the 850 regulations that are checked in this test.
The inspection takes into account all the relevant circumstances and includes the following:
- The adequacy of earthing and bonding.
- The suitability of the switch and control gear. For example an old fusebox with a wooden back, cast-iron switches, or a mixture of both will need replacing.
- The serviceability of switches, sockets and light fittings. All of these may need replacing: older round-pin sockets, round light switches, cables with fabric coating hanging from ceiling roses to light fittings, black switches and sockets mounted in skirting boards.
- The type of wiring system and its condition. For example cables coated in black rubber were phased out in the 1960s, likewise cables coated in lead or fabric are even older and may well need replacing (modern cables use safer pvc insulation).
- That residual current devices are used for sockets that may be used with outdoor electrical equipment.
- The presence of adequate identification and notices.
- The extent of any wear and tear, damage or other deterioration.
- The changes in use of the premises which have led to, or may lead to, problematic wiring.