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How Often Should Fixed Wire Testing Be Carried Out?

March 31st, 2023

Last updated: June 9th, 2023

It is an employer or business owner’s responsibility to ensure that certain health and safety precautions have been taken and that employees and customers are protected. One of the specific tests that must be carried out is fixed wire testing, part of an EICR Test.

In this guide, we cover some of the specifics. How often should fixed wiring be tested? Is an EICR test a legal requirement? 

In a commercial setting, the frequency of fixed wiring tests can vary depending on the type of business you run. The crucial document to refer to for this information is the IET Wiring Regulations (currently BS7671:2018). 

Regulations have been designed considering the risk of certain business types, and the potential consequences if something should go wrong with the electronics. When booking electrician services such as an EICR test you should also consider how often the equipment is being used and any other risks. 

Around 20% of fires in the UK are caused by faulty electrical items or other electrical risks, so it is more than worth getting regular tests to both stay compliant and to ensure peace of mind when it comes to fire safety.

How Often Should Fixed Wiring Be Tested?

This is one of the cases where the frequency of testing is different depending on your business type. In some commercial premises you can book an EICR every five years and know that you are legally compliant. In other cases, you may need a test every three years, and in some rare cases a test every year is legally required.

If you need guidance on which type of business your premises falls into, and therefore how often testing is required, you can reach out to Robinsons Facilities Services today for help.

Commercial premises where testing can be carried out every five years include:

  • Office buildings
  • Hotels and restaurants
  • Retail outlets
  • Churches
  • Public houses
  • Community centres
  • Shared accommodation such as houses of multiple occupancy and residence halls
  • Schools and other educational buildings
  • Care homes where medical care is not delivered

It is worth stressing that five years is the minimum requirement, and to keep your employees safe you may choose to test more frequently. 

Commercial premises where testing can be carried out every three years include:

  • Industrial units
  • Theatres and playhouses
  • Caravans
  • Spa hotels and leisure centres
  • Agricultural buildings

There are some instances where an annual test is required. These include:

  • Laundrettes
  • Swimming pools
  • Petrol stations
  • Saunas
  • Medical locations such as clinics and hospitals

To further add to the confusion, there are some establishments where the testing might vary within one premises. 

For instance, within a cinema, the “back of house” operations may only need to be tested every three years, but front of house may need annual testing. Certain care facilities may also be similarly split into different areas, some of which need more frequent EICR tests. 

A hotel, for example, may have a swimming pool on site. In this instance, only the pool area itself requires annual testing, and the hotel rooms require testing every five years.

Is An EICR a Legal Requirement?

Yes, an EICR test is a legal requirement and must be carried out regularly. The legislation governing this requirement is the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989, which requires that all electrical systems in workplaces be maintained to prevent danger. This includes the obligation to have periodic EICR testing performed on electrical installations to ensure that they are safe and comply with the relevant safety standards.

Not only are you risking peoples’ safety if you don’t meet these obligations, it is possible that you could face hefty fines. Local authorities can issue penalties of up to £30,000 per breach of these rules. 

If you would like more information on fixed appliance testing or to book a test, please contact us today. We would be happy to answer any of your questions.

At Robinsons Facilities Services, we cover the Yorkshire area offering fixed appliance testing services. Contact us if you live in:

Complete our quick contact form or call 01423 226578 today.

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