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Thread: Plug in extension

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    Plug in extension

    Hi all

    I was issued a COC which is not compliant. The DB has no blanks, cb's ratings are not visible, the EL doesn't even work, the isolator has no glands and then there is another fault where my question comes in. It is an extension cord that plugs into an existing socket. Yes I know, not part of the installation... However, this extension is joint with a chocolate block, open connection. So when plugged in, any one will shock upon contact. Now the contractor says, sorry this is not part of the installation. But this is not safe. Shouldn't the installation be safe for you as an electrical contractor who issues the COC. Is there no law that gives clarity in such regard?

    Thanks

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    Hi Wouks

    If you feel that the COC is not compliant and he is an ECA member , report him to ECA and they will deal with it.If he is not an ECA member report him to DOL but do not expect a result .

    The DB must have blanks and CB ratings should be clear .

    With regards to the extension and bearing in mind that the details supplied by you are limited - We have no idea if the owner plugged the extension in after he did a COC - If the extension is fixed to the wall and a cord is run through a wall or longer than 3 meters then it is part of the installation. I expect this statement to bring along differences of opinion and it is difficult to pin down in the regulations.

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    Thanks for the advice GCE. The extension is fitted against the wall on top of skirting with cable clips. It then plugs into the socket circuit and extends to another plug opposite the existing one. About 4-5meters in length.

    Also, the fridge is supplied by an isolator. What do you call this circuit on the COC and labelling on DB? Because it is not a socket outlet circuit.

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    Hi

    I would put the extension cord as part of the fixed installation and would therefore need to be installed according to the code.
    The isolator can be labeled as an isolator on the DB

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    As per GCE, it's a grey area. If the trailing lead was actually trailing and removed during the CoC then it would be valid, if it was left in place and it was clipped then it would be treated as part of the installation.

    You say the fridge is hardwired into an isolator, is the isolator the only thing on that circuit or are there sockets on that circuit as well?
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    A tip with regards to circuit breakers...when the circuit breakers get older and the lettering comes off...take an engraver and engrave the rating... then use tippex which will make it clearly visible save you a hand full of money if you doing a budget jo

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    Plug-in circuits are not part of a CoC. I mention it on the certificate and also to the owner or new occupant. It is illegal and should be removed if it is made part of the installation. However, I have found numerous garage door openers and gate motors on plug-in circuits. If the installation legally complies, I pass it without a problem. Old breakers normally show up the rating after a good clean-up of the toggle. A bit of white paint or Tippex makes it easily visible. Most are already engraved.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Henthel View Post
    Plug-in circuits are not part of a CoC. I mention it on the certificate and also to the owner or new occupant.
    My favourite rebuttal to that argument is the following from SANS 10124-1:

    6.16.1.10 The wiring between different parts of a fixed appliance that are installed separately is part of the fixed installation, even where it is supplied from a socket-outlet, unless such wiring is less than 3 m in length.

    You may have excluded all plug-in circuits from your CoC. However, that does not exclude them from the electrical installation if the regs say they are part of the electrical installation.

    Quote Originally Posted by Henthel View Post
    However, I have found numerous garage door openers and gate motors on plug-in circuits.
    Probably because of this:

    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.
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

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    Hi Dave. the regulation states "different parts of a fixed appliance". I might be wrong but I always viewed this as perhaps an air conditioner with the evaporator and condenser some distance apart or a stove hob with the oven on the other side of the kitchen. The three metres would then come into consideration. Unless you view a socket outlet as a fixed appliance. You sometimes find extensions in laundries. where the homeowner extended a plug circuit to get it closer to a washing machine which sits right next to a basin with taps. In such a case, i remove the extension whether it is legally wired or not. If someone installed some LED downlighters in their showcase and it is a safe plug-in circuit. I let it ride, because it is as safe as a table lamp or electric wall clock. If Wouks has his socket outlet wired with Surfix and fed directly from the supply, by using an extension box on the existing outlet, it would be perfectly legal. Would cost a couple of rand and a rewritten CoC. Otherwise the next option is to remove it. Plug-in appliances are sometimes a nightmare but other than warning the owner, there is not much you can do about it. After all, it belongs to them and I am not trying to be facetious. It is a homeowner's duty to make sure that his appliances and electrical equipment is safe. He owes it to himself and his family to practice good housekeeping as far as this is concerned. Fix that broken plugtop and replace the worn lead on the vacuum cleaner. Have the loose and burnt socket outlets replaced and make sure your dish antenna is earthed. Replace the broken lampholders and do away with all taped joints. Those are just a few things that should be checked. I am sure there are many more.

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