How Often Do Electrical Checks Need to Be Carried Out?
There are two main types of electrical checks for most businesses: an electrical wiring installation check and a Portable Appliance Test (PAT).
An electrical wiring installation check is to be performed by a qualified electrician, who will issue a certificate after each test that states when the next inspection is due. For checks performed in offices, this is usually every 5 years, whereas for checks preformed in a manufacturing environment (such as a factory) where electrical usage is high, this can be every 3 years.
PATs don’t have a set period and there is no mandate as to who should carry them out. A qualified electrician is not required to perform it, although it would be good practice to have a competent individual perform the check. Checks should be performed regularly to show the equipment is safe to use, but the frequency of checks is at the discretion of the business. More portable appliances such as power tools require checks more often than less portable appliances such as photocopiers and desktop computers because they are more susceptible to damage through being moved around.
Both electrical installation wiring checks and PATs will most likely be reviewed in the event of an electrical fire and, if they are found to be invalid or out of date, may invalidate your insurance. Therefore, the best practice is to make sure electrical installation wiring checks are always done when they are due, and to keep on top of PATs to keep your business protected.
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