Codebreakers #42

Codebreakers #42

Need help with cracking those EICR codes? The technical team at NAPIT, with the help of the 18th Edition Codebreakers publication, answer your latest coding queries. Click on the photos for a closer look!



What can I say, wow!!! We often joke about using bell wire or accuse poorly trained or untrained people of such practices but don’t actually see it very often.

Not only has the installer wired an electric shower using a loudspeaker cable (see image, above left), they’ve also used a junction box to extend the supply from a piece of 3 core flex (see image, above right). I can only guess at the size of the flex, which is likely to be 1.5 mm2 at best, and at worst 0.75 mm2. To add a little more insult, there is no cpc as the speaker cable is two core, the cpc is not extended past the junction box.

The speaker cable is also single insulated; LV AC cables in excess of 50 V that are single insulated need to be in an enclosure or conduit. Another question is the temperature range of the speaker cable insulation, which may not be acceptable.

Although I can’t confirm it, I’m fairly confident that the conductors are undersized for the OCPD protecting them. I’m also assuming there is an OCPD, to be fair, but given the state of what we can see, I wouldn’t count on it. This is a foolhardy and unbelievably dangerous installation! The risk of fire due to conductor overheating and the potential for electric shock are incredibly high.

I don’t think that this was undertaken by anyone with even a minute amount of electrical training. I can only hope this was a home DIYer. The thought that there was, or is, an individual at large carrying out this kind of installation quality, is frightening.

It just shows why we need to be more proactive as an industry and drive EICRs on all properties more frequently.

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