A visual electrical inspection is intended as a means of identifying defects, damage and weakening of the electrical system in a home. It is a speedy way and cost effective way of determining whether or not the installation complies with the current BS7671 electrical safety standard. Once inspected a small report is usually written explaining where there are defects in the system and what these are.
The electrician is specifically inspecting the installation for safety, deterioration, decay, wear and tear and overloading.
This sort of electrical inspection will not involve any circuit testing. Therefore, by itself, it cannot determine whether that installation is totally safe for continued use.
So why would I want a Visual Electrical Inspection then?
If you are considering the acquisition of a new flat, house or office, you may want to think about a Visual Electrical Inspection. This inspection can give you a reasonable indication of the state of the electrical system in the building. The benefit of this inspection is that it is moderately quick and inexpensive.
Once you have the report, you can make an knowledgeable decision on whether or not to purchase the property, whether the electrical system wants repair or upgrading and whether to take that into account when making an offer for the building.
If you are a landlord renting a property out, a visual inspection report may well be used as an interim measure between a formal Periodic Inspection Report (PIR).
Cost of a visual electrical inspection:
The cost of a visual electrical inspection and report can depend on the volume of the home and the easiness of access to inspect the electrical installation itself. However, look for electrical firms that provide preset pricing for this service. This will save any nasty surprises when the bill arrives. The inspection itself ought to take around half and hour to an hour and in London will cost around £100.
If you decide to hire a professional electrician or electrical company to execute your electrical testing, the outlay will depend on the time taken to test all appliances thoroughly. The time taken will rely on how easy it is to get to the appliances for testing, any pieces of furniture that wants to be moved for instance and of course the number of appliances.
It is imperative to ensure that any electrical appliances and fixtures within the house you rent out are safe. On the other hand, unlike Gas Safe regulations, there is no legislation that demands you have to have a electrical safety certificate. Though, should any electrical fittings or appliances inside the rental property cause actual harm to the tenant, you could be held accountable.