If you are responsible for a building or rental property, you may have heard the word ‘EICR’ mentioned, and are not entirely sure what it means.
We’ve put together this guide to help you find out more about what EICR is, and why it is essential to help keep you safe.
What is the meaning of an EICR?
EICR is short for ‘Electrical Installation Condition Report’. It was previously known as ‘Fixed Wire Testing’, and is sometimes referred to as an ‘Electrical Safety Certificate’.
An EICR is when your electrical installations are tested by a ‘competent’ person to ensure they are safe and they will not cause any fire risks or electric shocks.
What do you mean by ‘electrical installations’?
An electrical installation is a fixed element of your electrical circuit, which provides electricity to your office, factory, shop or home.
Electrical installations include fuse boxes/circuit breakers, light fittings, plug sockets and wiring.
Why do I need to get an EICR done?
If you own a business or a rental property, you have a legal responsibility to ensure employees, customers and tenants are kept safe.
Old, faulty and malfunctioning electrical installations not only cause electric shocks but also pose a fire risk.
An EICR is the most comprehensive way of keeping your installations safe.
How often do I have to get an EICR?
It depends on the building. As some buildings are more prone to risk than others, they may need an EICR more frequently.
For example, hospitals need an EICR every year while offices and schools only need one every five years.
I own a rental property, and I’ve been told I need to get an EICR carried out. Why?
The laws regarding electrical checks for landlords changed in 2020.
If you are based in England, any tenancy you create or renew after 1 July 2020 has to have a valid EICR certificate, which must be renewed every five years.
If you have tenants in your property, you must get a valid certificate by April 2021.
What happens during an inspection?
During an EICR inspection, a qualified electrician will inspect the electrical installations in your building.
Once the inspection takes place, the electrician will give you a copy of the report. Any faulty or dangerous installations will be given the following codes:
- Code 1 (C1): Danger present. These installations must be made safe as soon as possible
- Code 2 (C2): Potentially dangerous. These installations must also be made safe as soon as possible
- Further Investigation (FI): Further investigation required immediately
- Code 3 (C3): Improvement recommended. You do not need to get this fixed, but it is recommended you do
Keep the report safe – you may need to provide a copy to your local authority or insurance provider.
How long does an EICR take?
It depends on the size of the property, the age of the electrical installations and how many electrical installations need testing. A good electrician will work with you to make sure disruption is kept to a minimum.
It may be quicker and more convenient to have your testing done at weekends or outside working hours.
If you have a lot of installations to test, you can often stagger testing. For example, if you have a factory that needs to be tested every three years, you can opt to have a third of the installations checked every year. This helps save time and reduce downtime on site
How much does an EICR cost?
It depends on how many electrical installations you have in the building (often referred to as ‘circuits’).
If you request a quote from us, we will provide you with a bespoke quote unique to you and your circumstances.