What are “Part P regulations” and what do they mean?
What is Part P?
In 2005 the Government introduced electrical safety rules into the Building Regulations for England and Wales. The principle of the Building Regulations is to ensure that consistent standards are applied to the construction of buildings including its structure, fire safety, sound insulation, drainage, ventilation and electrical safety. Because of this, most fixed electrical installation work in homes must, by law, meet the Building Regulations.
Part P states that “Reasonable provision shall be made in the design and installation of electrical installations in order to protect persons operating, maintaining or altering the installations from fire or injury.” This Means that anyone carrying out electrical installation work in a home must make sure that the work is designed and installed to protect people from fire and electric shocks.
What electrical work is notifiable in England?
Electrical work which requires notification differs between England and Wales. Additional changes were introduced to Part P in England in April 2013. This means that electrical work in a dwelling, or associated with its surroundings, is notifiable to a local building control body where it includes:
- circuit alteration or addition in a special location*
- installation of one or more new circuits
- installation of a replacement consumer unit (fuse box)
- rewire of all circuits
- partial re-wire
- new full electrical installation (new build)
* Certain zones within a room containing a bath or shower, or a room containing a swimming pool or sauna heater.
An alteration or addition to an existing circuit in a room containing a bath or shower is notifiable only where carried out in the space surrounding a bath or shower shown below:
Who is responsible for making sure that electrical work meets the requirements of Part P?
By law, all homeowners and landlords must be able to prove that all electrical installation work meets Part P, or they will be committing a criminal offence.
Local authorities can make homeowners or landlords remove or alter any work that does not meet the Building Regulations.
What do I need to do before electrical installation work can be carried out in my home?
You must either:
- tell your local-authority building-control about the installation work before it starts; or
- employ an electrician who is registered with one of the Government-approved Part P schemes.
We recommend that you use a registered electrician to do the electrical installation work.
The advantages of using a registered electrician are:
- you will not have to pay any building-control charges;
- the electrician can deal with everything for you;
- the electrician will arrange for you to receive a certificate that confirms the work meets Building Regulations;
- you have access to a formal complaints procedure if the work doesn’t meet Building Regulations; and
- you can choose to take out an insurance-backed guarantee when you have the work done, and you can make a claim if the work is later found not to meet Building Regulations.
What does Part P of the Building Regulations mean for me?
If you use a registered electrician, you can expect to have safe electrical installation work done, as the work will meet the UK national standard, BS 7671 (Requirements for Electrical Installations). When the work is finished you will receive:
- an Electrical Installation Certificate or Minor Work Certificate that confirms that the work meets BS 7671; and
- a Building Regulations Compliance Certificate that confirms that the work meets the Building Regulations.
Is it important who carries out electrical installation work in my home?
Yes. Electrical installation work must be carried out only by people who have the knowledge, skill and experience needed to avoid any danger to themselves and others.
We strongly recommend that you use a registered electrician to do any electrical installation work you need. They work to the UK national safety standard and will give you a safety certificate to confirm that their work has been designed, inspected and tested in line with that standard.
Find an Electrician Near Me
If you find that you home or business is not within the operating area of Care Projects, then a good place to look is on the NICEIC website. Here is an up to date list of all NICEIC registered electricians such as Care Projects who will be able to assist you with your electrical needs.