Building refurbishment present risks, especially when it comes to electrical systems. Regular electrical testing is a vital part of the maintenance of any building, but it becomes even more crucial with a refurbishment project, explains Darren Blackbird, Sales Director at leading electrical testing and maintenance provider phs Compliance:
“Ensuring every aspect of your electrical work is delivered according to BS 7671 standards is a key priority in any refurbishment, which is why we will often run projects alongside contractors to ensure that our clients remain compliant at all times, even during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Having an electrical compliance and remedial expert on board to prioritise electrical testing, repairs and safety at all stages of the work is key.”
The Electricity at Work Regulations 1989 require those who are in control of an electrical system, or part of an electrical system, to ensure it is regularly maintained and safe to use, including during a refurbishment.
“We start projects with a full electrical inspection and test to assess the existing systems and circuits and identify any faults, which in turn can be immediately rectified by our team before any work begins, ensuring safety and compliance on site from day one.
“The on-going protection of the existing system is also a priority. Parts of the electrical system may need to be isolated if the work could potentially disturb or damage it, and on-going testing will be required throughout refurbishment to ensure compliance.
“There may also be the need for more remedial work on-site as the refurbishment continues. If an inspection shows that something needs repair, it needs to be done immediately. Not having a specialist electrical installations team on board to carry out urgent remedial work can cause delays and increase costs.
“Electrical upgrades are a major part of most refurbishments and these require careful management, and additional testing, to maintain safety and compliance. Typically, there will be cabling replacements, part or full rewires, distribution board upgrades, fire safety system upgrades, data network improvements and energy efficient upgrades, like new LED lighting systems, to consider. We work closely with our clients to ensure these upgrades are installed and maintained correctly, leaving the finished project fully compliant.”
With over 50 years’ experience, phs Compliance is one of the UK’s leading providers of facilities management and compliance services with over 400 engineers across the UK. As well as electrical, mechanical and fire safety testing and maintenance services, phs Compliance also provides specialist electrical and mechanical project services, including design, supply and installation for everything from power to lighting.