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Thread: COC 12 volt lights

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    COC 12 volt lights

    Hi all

    First time in all my years I've had this one.

    Busy with a COC on a domestic installation.

    All the lights are 12V and are powered from a battery that is charged by a solar panel through a regulator that is fused.

    Must these lights be included on the COC, seeing that they are not in any way connected to the Municipal Supply ?

    There is no lights breaker in the DB.



    Derek

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    Hi

    I would say yes it needs to be included as part of the COC ( introduction of SANS 10142 covers it ) - It is an alternative source
    People think 12v and don't worry about the regulations.The fault current on batteries could be higher than the incoming supply fault level and so the protection and wiring of the 12v circuits is of utmost importance
    The fuses or C/Breakers need to be DC rated as should the rest of the components

    Have pasted the introduction to SANS below

    SANS 10142-1:2017
    Edition 2
    1
    Introduction
    In this edition an attempt has been made to move towards the IEC codes:
    extra low voltage (below 50 V) and d.c. applications (up to 1,5 kV) have been
    introduced as new requirements owing to the extensive usage of, and
    increased fire risk that result from, high load currents. This part of
    SANS 10142 does not intend to cover the LV control circuits of machinery or
    system components that are external circuits between separately installed
    parts of the machinery or system components.

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    Personally i would not even mention it in the COC...if they are not connected in any way to the "electrical installation" via a step down transformer...change over switch...etc

    Something to consider if you do decide to risk the consequences of including them.

    Are they SABS approved or have some form of approval recognized in SA?

    Who installed them...was it done by registered person and if so why was a COC not issued for the installation.

    "high load currents" these low voltage lights supplied from these cheap systems certainly dont fall into the high load current category...the ones they refer to in the SABS are the old 50 watt 12 volt lamps which were a huge risk when people connected 6 or more of these to a single transformer using 1.5 mm wire.

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    Thank you

    2 contradicting replies from 2 well respected members.

    That's why I posed the question. After speaking to a number of registered electricians in my area, I was none the wiser.

    Some say yes, include in COC, others say that the COC covers the wiring and associated equipment of the installation between the point of control and the points of consumption and these 12 Volt LED downlights supplied by a battery are not part thereof. ( I cannot disagree )

    Clearly a grey area and I have decided to include them in the COC, with a note that all the lights are 12 Volt.

    Reading once again through the regulations, I understand the term Alternate Supply to mean an alternative mains supply at mains voltage. The only place I can find batteries mentioned together with alternate supplies is where they are used to start motors for generators or when they are used in conjunction with a UPS.
    Last edited by Derlyn; 20-Jun-19 at 07:42 AM.

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    I suggest each electrical installation should have its own COC.

    Where the alternative supply portions of the standard become particularly important (if that solves the issue) is in notifications - particularly that inform that parts of electrical installation(s) present may still be live even when the Main Switch has disconnected the supply (to that particular installation),

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    Quote Originally Posted by Derlyn View Post
    Thank you

    2 contradicting replies from 2 well respected members.

    That's why I posed the question. After speaking to a number of registered electricians in my area, I was none the wiser.

    Some say yes, include in COC, others say that the COC covers the wiring and associated equipment of the installation between the point of control and the points of consumption and these 12 Volt LED downlights supplied by a battery are not part thereof. ( I cannot disagree )

    Clearly a grey area and I have decided to include them in the COC, with a note that all the lights are 12 Volt.

    Reading once again through the regulations, I understand the term Alternate Supply to mean an alternative mains supply at mains voltage. The only place I can find batteries mentioned together with alternate supplies is where they are used to start motors for generators or when they are used in conjunction with a UPS.

    Can you produce some form of certification for the solar panels...charge unit...light fittings and lamps?

    This is an interesting question...my home lights are already completely separate (same setup as you mentioned)...not part of my electrical installation ...no COC ...the next step is 4 solar panels connected directly to my geyser...completely separate from my electrical installation.

    The only reason i would even consider entertaining some form of certification would be for insurance purposes..that is who you should be asking ...will your insurance company cover your house if it burns down due to a fire caused by this equipment...or sue the electrical inspector...they certainly wont be trying to recover costs from some company in China...you would be a way easier target.

    something you should consider before putting your stamp of approval on the COC ...would the insurance company sue you for liability and costs considering you signed that it is "reasonably safe or SABS approved safe" as per section 4 ...10-11 and 12.

    the reason i included 10 ...could they regard the lighting as safety or emergency lighting...considering they have a backup and stay on when the power is off.

    The way i see it ...you only become liable for it if you acknowledge responsibility for it...i would rather be beaten on the knuckles for excluding something than having to pay out for something i cant verify has certification.

    The minute you grid tie or fit a change over or connect that lighting system into the "electrical installation" in any form you have to include it.

    Same with generators...to many electricians are bullied into connecting V-O-V generators (illegal to hard wire to your house) ...why you never ever hard wire a V-O-V generator to the house wiring...rather fit a plug ...with a sign which state a V-O-V generator cannot be connected to the plug and you add a note to your invoice which clearly states the same...it then becomes the owners responsibility...he can o what ever he wishes.

    I have had many a customer buy a cheap generator then try unload the responsibility onto me ...you can tell them until you are blue in the face ...they just want the generator connected...just make sure you are a member of the CYA club.

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    I have a good attorney. By certifying that an installation is reasonably safe is in no way a guarantee that the installation is fire proof.

    Been through that before.

    2 years after a COC was issued by yours truly, the house burn't down as a result of an "electrical" fault.

    Nobody could prove that the electrical installation was faulty. I know it wasn't.

    Eventually it came out. A faulty appliance caused the fire.

    Anyway, crux of the matter is that nobody, but nobody, irrespective of how "good" the installation is, can guarantee that the house wont burn down as a result of an electrical fault. As long as we take the necessary precautions in order to minimize the chances of that happening, I think one is quite safe.

    Peace, my brother.

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    I spoke to someone (involved in training etc for this stuff) about this subject...as it is becoming common practice and should be understood by all...including myself.

    Apparently ...there are new regulations for such an installation and it is advisable to issue a separate COC for that separate installation...as i thought...unless the installation is somehow linked using a changeover switch...grid tied etc.

    This is a subject which requires more attention and would advise that it be discussed in more detail...to a point that a letter be sent to the right people to query it...and the facts be shared..would be greatly appreciated.

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    Hi

    Been watching and reading the thread and decided it is time to stir the pot.

    There was no contradictory statements made - One was based on regulations and the other based on an opinion , I say while stirring the pot.

    There are no new regulations out with regards to alternative supplies and SANS 10142-1 still applies to all electrical installations as defined by OHSA

    I have pasted the index of SANS 10142-1 7.12 - which clearly shows the inclusion of PV off grid and is referenced too through out the code ,

    You have to issue a COC for electrical installation work and the definition of electrical installation work clearly allows for off grid systems to be included in the COC.
    There is a point of control as per definition on a stand alone off grid system.

    If a farm in the middle of nowhere is supplied with an Alternative supply ( pv , generator etc ) he still has to have a coc and if one of his workers are killed through electrocution DOL will be all over him for manslaughter and they will pass the buck to you as the installer for not issuing the COC and adhering to the laws of the country.

    Does not change when you come into town.

    The definitions generally clear up so called grey areas , and the definition of supplier makes the electrical contractor or owner of the PV system/generator a supplier.

    A previous discussion on the forum also bears relevance - https://www.theforumsa.co.za/forums/...290#post147290

    3.33
    electrical installation
    machinery, in or on any premises, that is used for the transmission of
    electrical energy from a point of control (see 3.56) to a point of
    consumption (see 3.55) anywhere on the premises, including any article
    that forms part of such an installation, irrespective of whether or not it is part
    of the electrical circuit, but excluding
    a) any machinery of the supplier that is related to the supply of electricity on
    the premises,
    b) any machinery that is used for the transmission of electricity of which the
    voltage does not exceed 50 V, where such electricity is not derived from
    the main supply of a supplier, and
    c) any machinery that transmits electrical energy in telecommunication,
    television or radio circuits

    3.56
    point of control
    point at which a consumer can, on or in any premises, switch off the
    electrical installation from the electricity supplied from the point of supply



    7.12 Alternative supplies .................................................. .............. 244
    7.12.1 General .................................................. .................. 244
    7.12.2 Requirements for alternative sources of supply ....... 245
    7.12.3 Earthing requirements and earth leakage
    protection .................................................. ............... 246
    7.12.4 Additional requirements for installations that
    incorporate electrical supply derived from static
    inverters used with uninterruptible power supply
    (UPS) equipment and photovoltaic installations
    off-grid or on-grid .................................................. ... 247
    7.12.5 Protection against overcurrent ................................. 248
    7.12.6 Additional requirements for installations where
    the alternate supply system
    provides a supply as a switched alternative to
    the main supply (standby systems and
    UPS systems that incorporate bypass switching) .... 249
    7.12.7 Additional requirements for photovoltaic (PV)
    and similar installations that provide a supply as
    an alternative to the main supply ............................. 249

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    aaaah man...now i have to go read the new SABS 10142-1 I bought because my mate was leaving for the UK...so i got it at a bargain price ...i threw it in file 13 with other junk...lucky for me he did a seminar so there are pile of notes and a booklet which was issued as part of the seminar.

    I decided to scratch for it and opened it ...the very first page in the booklet is ... Clause 7:12 sans 10142-1:2012 edition 1.8

    7.2 Alternating supplies (including low voltage generating sets, gas combustion, wind generation, photovoltaic (PV) installtions ,etc.

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