EICR’s Explained

EICRs Explained by David Gilbert at SCV Electrical

David Gilbert, director at SCV Electrical, explains the importance and process of Electrical Installation Condition Reports (EICRs). EICRs assess the safety of a property’s electrical system, identifying any defects that could cause fire or electric shock. Mandatory for landlords every five years since 2020, EICRs help ensure tenant safety. Homeowners are not legally required to conduct them. If an EICR fails, repairs are carried out based on the report’s findings to ensure the system is safe for use.

Video Transcript

Hello, my name is David Gilbert. I’m the director at SCV Electrical and I’m in a property in East London and I’m going to be carrying out an electrical installation condition report or an EICR. I thought I’d make a short video explaining a bit about them: what they are, why we do them, and a bit about the legal requirements, which should be hopefully pretty helpful.

What is an EICR?

I like to think of an EICR, if we keep it simple, it’s very similar to having an MOT done on a car – it will pass or fail. And basically if it fails, you’ll get a list of problems and why it’s failed and there’s minors and majors like an MOT on a car. With minors it can still pass and a major obviously would constitute a failure.

It’s a similar sort of system, and basically it is an inspection and test of all the electrics in the property. Which would be essentially all the wiring, all the accessories, sockets, switches, the fuse board, and checking all the earthing. You’re looking for defects that could be dangerous essentially. The two main dangers being fire and electric shock which is obviously something we want to prevent.

EICR Testing Intervals

Why we do it is to keep people safe and to prevent that kind of thing from happening. They generally need doing in a property every five years. Some installations you might have more regular intervals, depending on what it is.

So, for instance, a commercial kitchen might take a bit more of a hammering in terms of the installation getting a bit more use. So you might have a test interval of maybe two or three years because if you leave the test interval too long, the installation could become dangerous if it suffered a lot of damage. You need to keep the test interval shorter in that kind of situation.

EICR Legal Requirements

In terms of legal requirements and things with EICRs, it has changed recently in property. In 2020, it became mandatory for landlords to have the electrics checked as a minimum every five years to check if it’s safe for the tenants. This became mandatory in 2020. If you’re just a homeowner and you just live there yourself, there’s no legal requirement to have it done.

The process would be if you’re a landlord you would have the EICR carried out and then the electrician would supply the EICR. The installation will pass or fail. If it fails, you’ll then get the report and probably an estimate for repair work to be carried out.

EICR Certification

Provided you accept the estimate, the repair work would then be carried out and then a certificate would be issued which would basically say that the repairs have been done. So, you’re basically saying the installation is sort of safe for continued use.

That’s basically the procedure. I will now carry out the EICR on this property, and then I will be in the next video with my findings.

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