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!
PETER PROFFITT: Look at this beauty I found recently – the rain was pouring into the top of the fuse board!
As Peter rightly points out, this consumer unit (CU) isn’t fit for purpose and requires replacement due to water damage.
We don’t design BS 7671 installations to take account of secondary faults (except for IT systems). This means the initial designer wouldn’t have considered the water damage because a leaking pipe or roof etc can cause water damage, which is out of the electrical designer’s control. If the pipe, roof, or source of the leak weren’t leaking, the location and choice of equipment would likely be acceptable.
We know that this would normally be an acceptable position for distribution equipment, as the supply cut out and meter are in the same location and will need reporting to their respective suppliers as they’re likely to be damaged in a similar way to the CU.
Although its vital to choose equipment respective to the external influences acting on it, it’s not necessary to design installations to account for the failure of a different service or structure, unless this has been expressly requested or specified by the Client.
Before any remedial work to the BS 7671 installation takes place here, the cut-out and meter will need to be checked by their respective suppliers. From an EICR perspective, all we can do here is visually report on the suppliers’ equipment and allow them to investigate accordingly. Any supplier repairs, however, will need to be made after the leak has been repaired.
From looking at the existing installation, other than the requirement to replace water damaged equipment, the cable containment leaves much to be desired. It would attract a C2 for inadequate mechanical support, which could cause strain on terminations. The requirement for adequate cable support also includes the cables connecting the meter to the CU, which are now specifically referred to in BS 7671
The earthing conductor and protective bonding conductors also appear to be contained in ‘free air’, which isn’t acceptable. They could easily become dislodged from their terminals and leave the installation without an effective earthing system.
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