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What is fixed wire testing?

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Fixed wire testing also referred to as Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR), is a test which involves checking the electrical installations or circuits within a building are safe and complaint with the relevant workplace safety legislation. In this article we tell you everything you need to know about fixed wire testing.

So, what is fixed wire testing?

Fixed wire testing involves testing and inspecting the electrical installations or circuits within a building. This test covers all of the electrical wiring in a building including the main panels, distribution boards, lighting, socket outlets, air conditioning and other fixed plant. When the electrical installation has been tested and is confirmed as safe, then an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) will be issued.

Fixed Wire Testing can also be referred to as; Electrical Fixed Wiring Inspection, Fixed Wire Inspection, Periodic Inspection and Testing or Electrical Installation Testing.

Please note fixed wire testing does not refer to the equipment which is plugged in or wired into spur sockets or isolators. This refers to Fixed Equipment testing.

How often should fixed wiring be inspected?

It is recommended that fixed wiring should be inspected between 1 and 5 years depending on the type of buildings. Most standard workplaces require an electrical installation condition report to be produced every 5 years, but there should be regular routine inspections carried out each year.

Below is a list of workplaces that require 5-year fixed wiring testing:

  • Commercial spaces e.g. offices and retail outlets
  • Hotels and restaurants (this does not include spa hotels)
  • Education environments e.g schools, colleges and universities
  • Student accommodation
  • Cares homes
  • Hospitals (this does not include medical locations)
  • Community centres, churches and public houses

However, workplace that are exposed to extreme temperatures, dust, moisture or that are open to the general plumbing require more frequent testing as these are at a higher risk. These types of workplaces require fixed electrical testing every 1-3 years and also require more frequent routine inspections.

Below is a list of workplaces that need more frequent fixed electrical testing:

  • Spa hotels and leisure facilities – 3 years
  • Caravans – 3 years
  • Industrial units – 3 years
  • Places of public entertainment – 3 years
  • Agricultural and horticultural establishments – 3 years
  • Medical locations in clinics and hospitals – 1 year
  • Swimming pool and saunas – 1 year
  • Petrol station – 1 year
  • Manufacturing, warehouses and maintenance garage – Normally require testing every 3 years unless it involves using heavy machinery.

Yes, fixed wire testing is a legal requirement.