Do I Need Rewire?
A question many house owners, and more often potential house buyers ask themselves is "does this place need a rewire?"
Often the answer is not straight forward, as some parts of the installation may be satisfactory, others not so. Some older properties may have had modifications carried out while different (ie older) versions of the Wiring Regulations were in force and are now in need of improvement.
The only way to be sure, is to get an approved electrician to have a look and carry out an inspection. If you are buying a property, paying for an inspection may be money well spent if you discover the property needs to be re-wired.
Completed Fuse Box Replacements
The answer is simple, as with most things in life you pay for what you get. If you receive a quotation from a one man band sole trader and it sounds too good to be true it most likely will be.
Alot of trades these days advertise rewires at £1200.00 pounds to get you to accept the price and get a foot in the door, once you accept and they commence the rewire you are committed as you have no electricity and there is no turning back. the price itself offers next to no sockets in the house and then half way though the installation you end up paying up to £1500.00 on extras such as shower points, cooker points, smoke detectors, outside lights because you have no choice.
A rewire to the 17th Edition Wiring Regulations will take 5 days for two fast Electricians, at the end of the rewire all the cables should be capped as in this illustration. I do not believe any electrician that says they can do a rewire for £1200.00 pounds, show me one, let me visit it and I guarantee it will full of flaws, rushed poor workmanship and not compliant to the regulations.
I have seen first hand a £1200.00 rewire when my company received a call from a client in despair having kicked the electricians off site for shoddy workmanship, MPS Electrical had to put it right but this cost the client more money on top of his £1200.00 which he already paid. My advice is if you need a rewire on your home or company premises, do it right first time and use a registered reputable company who issue certificates. If I had a pound for every time I visit a £1200.00 rewire special I would be a rich man now!
Does your house need a rewire?
Many houses in the UK still have old wiring. This is not only unsafe and a potential fire hazard but is also less efficient than modern systems. It can also affect the resale value of your house, as old wiring almost certainly is highlighted as a major problem during a survey.
If you have old wiring in your house, for example fabric or rubber covered flex you should seriously consider having a complete rewire. Here at MPS Electrical Contractors Leeds we can completely redesign your electrical system to include sufficient socket outlets located in the right places to accommodate your needs, a state of the art consumer unit to replace your old fuse box which will contain residual current devices and circuit breakers. Rewiring a house is a major undertaking, we will carry out the work as quickly and efficiently as possible.
Take a look at our 10-point checklist to see if you might need a rewire.
- Does your fuse box have replaceable fuse wire?
- Do your plugs or sockets get hot or have scorch marks?
- Do fuses blow regularly?
- Do you have to use extension leads and adaptors?
- Do you have lights that use the old, twisted type flex?
- Do you have rubber covered flex?
- Do you have round pin plugs and sockets?
- Are your cables missing an earth cable?
- Do you use electrical equipment outdoors?
- Has your wiring been checked in the last 10 years?
If you have answered yes to any of the above you could require a rewire.
TRS Wiring Tough Rubber Sheath Wiring
(TRS) was the forerunner to today's modern PVC cables. It was last used in this country in the early 60's and if your property is older than this, and hasn't been re-wired at some point, there may be TRS wiring present in your house. TRS wiring can be extremely dangerous.
The sheaths (inner & outer) of these cables are made of rubber. The outer is impregnated with an oil, preventing it from drying out, but where the inner sheaths are exposed to air, ie. in junction boxes, consumer units, switches and behind sockets, this inner sheath, over time, dries out and cracks, usually falling off leaving exposed live conductors, as you can see this has happened to the black cable here.
For obvious reasons this can be very dangerous, and any live TRS wiring should be replaced as a matter of urgency with the more modern PVC type.
The two types of cable are very distinctive, and you should be able to spot TRS wiring at a glance. Another reason TRS cabling can be dangerous is that in the lighting cables (as in the picture) there is usually no earth wire. There are 3 conductors present in the PVC cable (Brown, Blue and the bare conductor, which is sleeved green and yellow, then used as an earth or cpc) but only 2 (Red & Black) in the older TRS cable. If there are metal light fittings in the property they cannot be earthed if a 2 core cable is used and this is very dangerous.
A good place to check for TRS cabling is in the loft as access is easy. Of course these cables are also the easiest to replace, so if you don't find any up there, there may still be some lurking somewhere else! It is important to remember that just because there is TRS wiring present, doesn't necessarily mean it's live. If you are in any doubt though, it is very important that you get a qualified electrician to check for you.
So a few golden rules:
- Check for old accessories, switches, sockets, etc.
- Check the consumer unit.
- In pre 60's properties check the cabling, if it's TRS GET IT REPLACED ASAP.
- IF IN DOUBT CALL US AND ASK US TO CARRY OUT AN ELECTRICAL SAFETY CHECK FOR YOU!
When carrying out a rewire we can also provide computer data cabling, Phone points, Emergency lights, TV Aerial points, Intruder Alarm, Door Entry Systems and under floor heating.
Fuse Board Upgrades
We can provide a free quotation to replace existing rewireable fuseboards with Consumer Units containing Minature Circuit Breakers (MCBs) & Residual Current Devices (RCDs). These consumer units have built-in 30mA protection for the use of electrical equipment outdoors & easily re-set circuit breakers giving safe & accurate protection of circuits.
Miniature Circuit Breakers
MCBs are mechanical switches that incorporate thermal & magnetic short circuit protection giving accurate & fast disconnection in the case of a fault. Unlike fuse wires they can be reset without the need of tools.
We also upgrade main & supplementary equipotential bonding to BS7671 standards. RCDs are earth fault safety trips that monitor the whole installation or individual circuit for earth leakage currents.
Decision to rewire
The best way to determine the current state of an installation is to have a Periodic Inspection Report. This type of report is often carried out prior to a rewire where there is uncertainty or concern over the condition of the installation.
"All work is carried out to the highest standard with minimum disturbance"
Our electricians have many years experience in rewiring existing properties. We offer free quotations for work ranging from a full rewire to a selection of small alterations & repairs.
We will be happy to discuss your requirements & advise on the work requested. MPS Electrical is registered under the Part P self certification scheme.