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First let’s start with, what it stands for, so EICR stands for.
‘Electrical Installation Condition Report’
Please take note of the word ’Report’ and yes, it’s a report and not a certificate. There’s no such thing as an electrical inspection certificate. This is one of the major misconceptions when dealing with an EICR.
In most cases EICR’s are incorrectly referred to as.
· Landlord checks
· Electrical inspection certificate
· Landlord electrical checks
· Electrical certificate
· Electrical certies
· Home electrical surveys.
However, carrying out and EICR, may be the mechanism to achieve one of the points above, partially or in full.
In simple terms and EICR is an electrical assessment of your fixed wiring which would tell you the current health/condition of your electrical installation.
In most cases, an EICR is the industry standard method, of assessing the continued safe operation of an electrical installation.
There are only two outcomes of the overall report, satisfactory and unsatisfactory. An EICR is made up of several sections/parts, but the two key main parts are,
1. Schedule of Inspections.
2. Schedule of Test Results.
Please note, that the EICR paperwork must be accompanied by the two items above, or the report will be invalid.
The schedule of inspections is basically a tick list inspection. The inspection will compromise of both external, as well as internal examinations of electrical accessories, such as lights, switches and sockets.
Whilst carrying out the visual inspections the inspector will check for things such as damaged or cracked accessories, signs of overheating, burn marks, quality of workmanship, etc.
During this stage the inspector will carry out internal inspections on a percentage of the accessories. The percentage of accessories examined will depend on the outcome of the previous visual inspections and the inspectors engineering judgment.
During the internal inspections the inspector will assess things such as the tightness of terminations, any signs of overheating, any signs of water ingress etc.
After carrying out the schedule of inspections the inspector will then carry out a schedule of tests. These schedules of test are mandatory, and they are carried out to complement the schedule of inspections.
Coding’s or merit markers of an EICR
There are only seven acceptable outcomes of each item on a schedule of inspection and schedule of test results. See table below for clarity.
What’s tested and inspected whilst carrying out an EICR
The EICR testing process will only cover the fixed wiring of an installation and permanently connected equipment. Examples of permanently connected equipment would be items such as electric showers and hardwired ovens, etc.Items that wouldn’t be covered would be items such as kettles, toasters and other mobile equipment.
How long should an EICR take.
A thoroughly conducted EICR on a 2 or more-bed property, should take the best part of four hours to complete. Sometimes more time may be required depending on the ongoing discoveries that the inspector may be making.
How much does an EICR cost?
There may be many factors that affect the cost of an EICR, and different contractors / inspectors may use different pricing techniques when quoting for an inspection.
However, the most common method is a base charge per fuse box plus a fixed price per circuit. For example, if your fuse box is a 10 way fuse box with 8 circuits and if the base price per fuse box is £125.00 and the cost per circuit is £25.00, then the cost of the EICR will be.
EICR Cost = £125.00 + ( 8 x £25.00 ) = £325.00
The base charge per board is the charge to cover the cost of carrying out the preliminary test at each fuse box, for example, the prospective fault current tests.
The base charge would also cover the cost of carrying out the background paperwork tasks that would be required to produce and finalise a report for each fuse box that is tested.
In most domestic properties there will only be one fuse box but in a commercial environment there may be many fuse boxes / distribution boards present.
How often do you need to have an EICR carried out?
The interval for carrying out an EICR on a privately owned home, non-tenanted, would be down to the discretion of the homeowner. However, as guidance and good practice we would recommend that a homeowner have and EICR conducted at least every 10 years and to also keep records of any previous reports.
On all rented accommodation, whether it be privately, or publicly funded, including HMO’s, the legal minimum requirement to have an EICR conducted is every 5 years.
You may also need to have an EICR conducted for other reasons such as,
1. Request from a prospective property buyer
2. Request from property insurer
3. Requirements from local authority i.e., schools and community halls.
4. Public safety reasons i.e., shopping centres.
Please see links below for additional information.