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COLIN PRYDE: I DISCOVERED THIS IN MY SISTER-IN-LAW’S GARAGE – THE SOCKET USED FOR A TUMBLE DRYER WAS WIRED IN FLEX!
This type of observation is precisely the reason why electrical installations should be checked regularly, and any new installation work, maintenance, or alterations be carried out by a competent person.
The supply cable here is a flex, and although not an issue in itself, where flexes are used, they need to be sized and terminated appropriately for their particular design.
As we can’t tell what type of device is protecting this cable, I’ll assume it’s a 20 A radial (it could be a 32 A ring final circuit) and that the flex is 1.5mm2. It is quite possible the flex could be 1.25mm2 or less, but it’s too difficult to tell from the photos.
In all scenarios, I will assume the flex’s conductor size is not adequately protected by the overcurrent protective device (OCPD). As the neutral conductor has burned away, I suspect that the terminal was loose or may not have adequately held the flex’s fine wire conductors.
When we terminate fine wire multi-strand conductors, they should either be terminated in such a way that the fine wire conductors are held securely or are suitably treated. Suitably treated allows the use of insulated straight flat blade crimps or similar.
The risk for escalation due to fire was high here, as the fault has only been found after the tumble dryer stopped working, so a lucky escape.
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