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What Electrical Certificate do I need?

1st Mar, 2023 | Electrics

If you are having electrical work done, or are currently getting quotes, you may be wondering about what kind of certificates you should be given once the work is complete. The different types of electrical certificates can be a bit confusing so this should help break it down into simple terms!

If you’re wondering, what certificate do you get after a rewire? or what certificate you should get after having work done? – The aim of this post is to give an insight into it. Of course, it’s important to finding a local electrician who you trust however it never hurts for customers to be aware of things in advance.

The 3 Main Types of Certificates

The three main types of electrical certificates you will come across as a customer are.

      • Electrical Installation
      • Minor Works Certificate
      • Electrical Inspection Condition Report (EICR)

Electrical Installation Certificate

An electrical installation certificate is the type of certificate a customer receives after an electrician has installed one or more new circuits. Other examples include a complete rewire, a replacement consumer unit or an additional consumer unit.

Generally, any time electrical work is done at the consumer unit, a new installation certificate will be issued.

A new installation certificate are several pages long and covers everything there is to check during an electrical inspection. Completing the document correctly takes time – which invariably adds cost to the job – however it is a vital part of ensuring work is done safely.

If you have had a rewire completed, then you will be issued one of these certificates. The same is true for new build properties. An installation certificate is the electrician’s way of certifying that everything is correct and safe for customers before they begin using their new power supply etc.

 

Minor Works Certificate

A minor works certificate is issued after an electrician has made an alteration to an existing circuit. Minor works certificates are often used to certify work such as adding additional sockets to an existing circuit or increasing the number of light fittings in a room. It can also be where a fused spur has been installed for an appliance or boiler connection.

It is fair to say that minor works certificates are more common for domestic customers to receive as most work involves making slight alterations to existing circuits.

A minor works certificate is a way for electricians to certify that they have tested and are happy with the safety of the existing circuit they are adjusting. The certificate also demonstrates that the alterations they have made are safe and ready to be used by the customer.

Although a minor works certificate is much more concise, there are still many elements to the electrical installation that the electrician must test. An electrician cannot make alterations to an existing circuit if the installation is unsafe or if the circuit, they are adapting does not comply with new wiring regulations.  You will find an electrician performs a series of test before attempting work to ensure it is safe to make any adjustments. An electrician carrying out the work will be able to advise if they can issue a minor works certificate for the job or if a new installation certificate is required.

 

Electrical Inspection Condition Report (EICR)

An electrical inspection condition report is issued when an electrician has been tasked with inspecting the existing electrical installation and reporting their findings. An EICR is used as a safety check on the current system and used to highlight any potentially dangerous issues that need addressing.

Unlike the other two certificates issued above, an EICR can give an unsatisfactory result – meaning the electrical system requires improvements. This is an important distinction. Minor works or installation certificates are certifying that the work the electrician has completed is safe and complies with current regulations.

An electrical inspection condition report is like an annual car MOT. An MOT is an inspection by a professional (in this case a mechanic) to provide the car owner with the knowledge as to what sort of condition their car is in. It’s possible to be issued with a notice that the car has failed the MOT – in the same way, an EICR can point out that the electrical system has failed its inspection.

During an EICR an electrician must instantly make safe any code 1 faults they discover (immediate danger to health – such as exposed live wires) this is where their duty to make improvements stop. Much like an MOT, the EICR advises of any potentially dangerous safety issues, it is ultimately the homeowner’s responsibility to organise to have the faults corrected.

As of 1 June 2020, 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.

You do not legally have to provide or be provided an Electrical Installation Certificate Report if you are selling a property or buying a property, it does help give peace of mind that the property is electrically safe. Regulations do state that for commercial property an Electrical Installation Certificate Report should be carried out every 5 years.  For residential properties built before 2005 an Electrical Installation Certificate Report should be carried out every 5 years and for properties built after 2005 it requires them to be carried out every 10 years.

 

Always consult a qualified local electrician who can advise about the particulars of your electrical installation. Electrical safety is hugely important, and in-person professional advice should always be sought and followed.

Qualified Electrical contractors, who register with a competent person self-certification scheme, will be able to self-certify compliance with Part P of the Building Regulations whenever they carry out ‘notifiable’ work. Persons who are not registered with a self-certification scheme – including DIYers – will need to notify or submit plans to a Building Control Body (BCB) unless the work is non-notifiable.

The Government has approved self-certification schemes to be operated by:

      • BESCA
      • Blue Flame Certification
      • Certsure LLP trading as NICEIC and ELECSA
      • NAPIT Certification Ltd
      • OFTEC
      • Stroma
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Did you know Warner’s have a team of professionals who can carry out all electrical works, to the necessary standards and accreditations.

Click here to contact us for more information.