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Thread: The Electrical Certificate of Compliance explained

  1. #161
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    Quote Originally Posted by SeanM View Post
    Evening GCE

    Thank you as always for the informative response.

    I was asking as in the regulations it says if a luminaire has a fan (motor) then an isolator must be fitted or it must be placed on an earth leakage, I am trying to understand the difference between a fan/motor on a luminaire and an extractor fan.

    I did a COC and the extractor fan (one with a chimney and a double storey so no ceiling) in the kitchen has no isolator and for me to fit one now would involve chasing not ideal and I want it to be first of all compliant and second of all neat.
    Fit a lockable double pole circuit breaker/isolator combo (breakers are lockable)in the DB... problem solved.

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    Hi Ians

    Have to disagree with you on your statement above - Extraction fan is regarded as a motor - 6.16.5.1.4 d bears relevance


    6.16.5.1.4 Each motor shall be supplied by a manually operated
    disconnector or any other manually operated disconnecting arrangement
    such as a withdrawable circuit-breaker, a removable link, a fuse or by the
    removal of a plug from a socket-outlet, which provides at least the same
    isolating distance, for the sake of safety, as a disconnector that is
    a) readily accessible and mounted on or next to the motor, or
    b) visible from the motor, or
    c) lockable in the open position, or
    d) housed in a lockable enclosure other than a distribution board.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GCE View Post
    c) lockable in the open position, or
    d) housed in a lockable enclosure other than a distribution board.
    I suggest what Ian proposes matches option c.
    The isolator combo is lockable - one isn't relying on the locking of the distribution board enclosure.

    You gave me a moment of pause there, Graeme. We've been using the lockable isolator combo solution as the elegant solution in a number of scenarios where we find missing isolator challenges - e.g. where ceiling fans that don't incorporate luminaires have been installed, bathroom extractor fans wired into the light circuits...
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

    Alcocks Electrical Services | Alcocks Pest Control & Entomological Services

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    Reading again - You are right Dave

    The original question of the earth leakage being the isolator - I would say only if the isolator is dedicated to the extract fan to be able to comply with 6.16.4



    6.16.1.4 The disconnecting device shall be positioned
    a) within 1,5 m from the appliance, or
    b) in a distribution board (if the switch-disconnector is capable of being
    locked in the open position).
    Even where a disconnecting device is on the appliance, a separate
    disconnecting device shall be provided in the fixed installation to allow for the
    total removal of the appliance

  5. #165
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    Good day Gents.

    Was reading some of the posts on here and seem to be pretty mild compared to what Iv been through with a property that I bought just over two years ago. My case is somewhat different as I bought a newly built place from an old man which built with his own money and offered me finance. I decided to take it and then get a bond later.

    At the time he showed me building plans, electrical COC and engineering certificates. Seemed legit so I paid him a large deposit and we moved in. I was mistaken as to this day the place is still not signed off. The trouble started last month where he had to get a new ECOC as was getting stuff ready for the building inspector to come out. He calls the same electrician that gave him the first COC and they just sat at the back and filled it in without setting foot in the house for an inspection. The old man knew that I had put up flood lights by another electrician. I then had my own inspection done and they were shocked at the way this install was done. From open boxes to no glands and the DB that has a zero earth leakage from the council box, wrong phase used and man a list goes on. I then get hold of the old man and told him about the problem but he responds by screaming at me and tells me that he will terminate the contract and I will walk away with nothing, at this time Iv almost invested 1 bar into this place. I then get hold of my lawyer and he sent him a 30 day notice to sort it out. About a week goes by and I get word that the building inspector is coming out so I make the time and meet with them at the house. I nearly fell on my back after I hear that the old man handed the same fake COC to the inspector as he was now under terms and rushed to sign it off. I showed the pictures to the inspector and mentioned that these were all sent via email to the old man some time before. The inspector blew his gasket on him that day and so did I and told him to get it sorted out. The old man then get's a qualified electrician out to go through everything and he took most of the day making a list and made some changes to the DB as he mention that the over current protection was to high and was worried about it. The electrician spoke to my girl friend on the day and told her that he would make sure by going through everything and provide a proper COC. We were then happy to hear that the old man finally got someone decent in but that was short lived as we then see some other guy pitch up two weeks ago to start working and now it would seem that he is making it even more illegal. The lights trip and we have had to switched off some of the breakers. I took pictures of the down lights and for some reason he has cut off the connector blocks that used to have an earth on them and just connecting them straight with two wires to the 220 supply. The bottom line here is that the old man don't want to pay and the crazy thing is that he has millions in the bank. He also has no regard to the fact that our five year old boy is also living in this house.

  6. #166
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    Quote Originally Posted by Longtom View Post
    Good day Gents.

    Was reading some of the posts on here and seem to be pretty mild compared to what Iv been through with a property that I bought just over two years ago. My case is somewhat different as I bought a newly built place from an old man which built with his own money and offered me finance. I decided to take it and then get a bond later.

    At the time he showed me building plans, electrical COC and engineering certificates. Seemed legit so I paid him a large deposit and we moved in. I was mistaken as to this day the place is still not signed off. The trouble started last month where he had to get a new ECOC as was getting stuff ready for the building inspector to come out. He calls the same electrician that gave him the first COC and they just sat at the back and filled it in without setting foot in the house for an inspection. The old man knew that I had put up flood lights by another electrician. I then had my own inspection done and they were shocked at the way this install was done. From open boxes to no glands and the DB that has a zero earth leakage from the council box, wrong phase used and man a list goes on. I then get hold of the old man and told him about the problem but he responds by screaming at me and tells me that he will terminate the contract and I will walk away with nothing, at this time Iv almost invested 1 bar into this place. I then get hold of my lawyer and he sent him a 30 day notice to sort it out. About a week goes by and I get word that the building inspector is coming out so I make the time and meet with them at the house. I nearly fell on my back after I hear that the old man handed the same fake COC to the inspector as he was now under terms and rushed to sign it off. I showed the pictures to the inspector and mentioned that these were all sent via email to the old man some time before. The inspector blew his gasket on him that day and so did I and told him to get it sorted out. The old man then get's a qualified electrician out to go through everything and he took most of the day making a list and made some changes to the DB as he mention that the over current protection was to high and was worried about it. The electrician spoke to my girl friend on the day and told her that he would make sure by going through everything and provide a proper COC. We were then happy to hear that the old man finally got someone decent in but that was short lived as we then see some other guy pitch up two weeks ago to start working and now it would seem that he is making it even more illegal. The lights trip and we have had to switched off some of the breakers. I took pictures of the down lights and for some reason he has cut off the connector blocks that used to have an earth on them and just connecting them straight with two wires to the 220 supply. The bottom line here is that the old man don't want to pay and the crazy thing is that he has millions in the bank. He also has no regard to the fact that our five year old boy is also living in this house.
    This is why he has millions in the bank... i have it all the time the people with the most money have the shortest arms and the deepest pockets.

    the first thing they tell you... is things are a bit tight... then ask if your rate is the best you can do ...then they want a detailed quote ...but dont want to pay for the quote ...but also dont want you to add your time taken to prepare the quote ...then they not prepared to pay the travelling cost... they also have a mate who can supply the material ...but you must still prepare a bill of quantities and give it to them and not charge for the time to prepare it... it just goes on and on and on ...sound familiar?

    i should start writing a book when my bussiness gets to 30 years (in just over a year) i would have reached my goal and dont really care what happens to it after that....i need to start looking for a new goal.

    I have just had an incident where one of my customers bought a house ...i always tell them ...dont sign any paper work until i have done a quick 10 min visual inspection and checked who signed off the COC there are few dodge inspectors around Durban ...the response is normally the same ...dont worry the estate agent has their people who sign off the house or the owner has said he will get it done... and that right there people is where the problems starts...everyone is getting their little piece of the action ...the seller has no interest in wasting his profits on repairing the list of faults....he just wants the piece of paper so that the transfer can go through.

    I dont go to site because it is a conflict of interest ... so i appoint someone else to meet with the customer and the person who signed over the COC ...a couple hand shakes and a list 3 pages long of all the faults to be repaired which need to be done... the criminal who signed off an illegal COC promises to fix all the faults... sends a team in for 3 days ...by the 3 rd day the customer has had a enough of the "team" damaging his property eating food out the fridge ...with the radio blaring in the lounge probably banging the maid in his bed (dont laugh it happens... even had a wife who was banging the garden boy) while he is at work...(why it pays to get a R299 wifi camera and leave it monitoring inside your house while they work so that you can view it from your phone while at work) ...the customer throws the team off site ... the electrical installation is still not up to standard ...and so the cycle continues... i get a call in 5 years time because the owner has had a house invasion and is leaving the country... calls me and requests i just sign over a COC and drop it off or he will collect... i refuse because i know the installation is not up to standard ....because he wasnt prepared to waste the money bringing it up to standard over the 5 year period... now i am the Ahole because i didnt spend my weekends bringing his electrical installation up to standard at my cost.

    does this sound familiar ...i am sure other sparkies have similar stories

    while on a role...must share this story ... get a call to fit a light in a small room off the main bedroom (a double story house) take my assistant (why i always work with an assistant not to help me but to protect me from these crazy customers) we run the cable and i am busy fitting the light ...next thing there is a security guard at the door to this room requesting i go with him... i do... we go downstairs and next thing there is a police van and more security vans... they about arrest me for attempted rape... anyway the cop asks me what i am doing in the room next to bedroom i take him up to show him ...they take mt assistant one side and start questioning him... cut a long story short ...it turns out she was banging garden boy.

    my advice to any young sparkies... or trademen for that matter who work in houses ...always make sure you have an assistant with you there are some crazy people out there ...who do some really strange things.

    I have many other stories... like customers accusing one of my mates for stealing money...the poor oke was arrested and it turns out she had hidden the money between the mattress and base worried they might steal it then forgot she had done it.... when she found it she had the case dropped... the poor oke life changed ...he almost got fired.

  7. #167
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    Thank you for the perfect explanation.

    There is still a grey area for most of those in factories though! Often, we do not understand which parts of the plant distribution network require a CoC. Examples are MCC,s motors, substation panels, where do these fall with regards to the COC?

    What about normal plant maintenance and repairs and alterations.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mncbon View Post
    Thank you for the perfect explanation.

    There is still a grey area for most of those in factories though! Often, we do not understand which parts of the plant distribution network require a CoC. Examples are MCC,s motors, substation panels, where do these fall with regards to the COC?

    What about normal plant maintenance and repairs and alterations.
    I have prepared and carried out inspection reports on large sugar mills... it took me weeks of preparation and data collection...every single panel from each sub station was checked and recorded on an Xl spread sheet ...which was reviewed and colour coded ...it resulted in a quote to repair... of around R 1.4 M

    What people dont understand is that the COC is not about being right in every aspect right now... it is about creating a safe environment for people and animals ...and to prevent fires etc etc.

    What we do on the large factory checks... prepare...record and repair...it is impossible to fix everything right now ...but rather as we south Africans understand it...as now now...just now... so what we do is create a list of repairs required and highlight the dangers by a colour code... for example ...no earth ...would require a team to be on standby to run a temp. cable/connection right now ...or critical ...a 1.5 mm wire connected to a 40 amp breaker would be labelled red... or a missing label for example would be labelled in yellow...you get the idea.
    Last edited by ians; 19-Sep-19 at 05:05 PM.

  9. #169
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    Ya I guess that's how some people operate as even got an email from him saying that even though your concerns are important there is no time for it as need to get the place signed off due to the high rates coming from the council as they still see it as vacant land. Never the less Iv given the old basted terms and if he fails another COC then I take him to court over the matter.

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