General Safety Tips

General Safety Tips

The following are some general Electrical safety tips for you and your home

Fuse Board

  • Have your fuse board checked by a registered electrical contractor at least every two years
  • Before adding an electric shower to your electricity supply, ask a registered electrical contractor the check that the supply is able to handle the load safely
  • Any change in the behaviour of your electricity, for example flickering lights or fuses blowing more than once, should be checked by a registered electrical contractor
  • If you are replacing fuses ensure that the correct type and size is used

Fire Safety

  • Fit two or more smoke alarms in your home and test regularly. Don't forget to replace their batteries twice every year
  • Always keep a fire blanket and fire extinguisher in your kitchen
  • Don’t mix electricity and water. If you have an electrical fire, only use an ABC dry powder or carbon dioxide (C02) extinguisher

Sockets & Switches 

  • Never use loose or damaged sockets or switches – have them repaired by a registered electrical contractor
  • Never force a 2-pin pug into a 3-pin socket
  • Avoid using multiple socket adapters
  • Never use appliances with worn or damaged flexes. Replace the appliance or have it repaired by a professional
For more information about electrical safety in your home visit ETCI (Electro Technical Council of Ireland) www.etci.ie or ESB Networks www.esb.ie.

 

What electrical checks can I perform in my home?

  • Test your Residual Current Device (RCD) every three to six months by pressing the ‘Test’ or ‘T’ button. This simulates a fault and ‘trips’ the switch showing you that the RCD is working correctly. You can then simply reset the switch back to the ‘on’ position. If pressing the button does not trip the switch, it is faulty and you need to arrange for a registered electrical contractor to fix this.
  • Check sockets, switches and appliances for signs of overheating or wear and tear on flexes
  • Check that plug tops are properly connected - the colour of the wires in a flex entering a plug-top should not be visible from outside the plug top
  • Check for damage to plug tops such as cracking, heat discoloration, missing screws etc.
For more information about electrical safety in your home visit ETCI (Electro Technical Council of Ireland) www.etci.ie or ESB Networks www.esb.ie.

 

I've received a PrePayPower Safety Advice Form

What is this for?

Here at PrePayPower.ie we take your safety while using our service very seriously. This page explains what each section on your ‘Safety Advice’ form means so that you are fully aware of any issues that need attention. However, as with any technical installation, there are some areas that cannot be explained in simpler terms so we recommend that you contact a registered electrical contractor.

Customer Ref No: This is the number that we use to identify you as a customer

There are two types of advice which our installer will identify by ticking the box on your form.

  • Please arrange for a registered electrical contractor to complete the works below and then email safetyadvice@prepaypower.ie or call us on 1800 989178 to reschedule your PrePayPower meter installation (This is where our installer cannot complete the installation until the required works are completed)
  • We advise that you have the following works completed to improve electrical safety in your home. If you have any queries contact us by email safetyadvice@prepaypower.ie or call us on 1800 989 178 (This is where our installer was able to complete the installation but recommended that works be completed to improve safety in your home)
Fuse Board

There are a number of different names for the domestic Fuse Board:

  • Fuse board
  • Fuse box
  • Distribution board
  • Consumer unit
  • Panel board

An electric fuse board is used to distribute electricity around your home. The fuse board is enclosed in a box and contains circuit breakers, fuses, and switches. Breakers, fuses and switches are essential safety devices that cut off electrical supply to your home if a fault occurs. Common fuse board issues include the following:

  • Signs of burning
Burning can be an indicator of a loose connection or electrical fault in your equipment. Any sign of burning should be investigated immediately by a registered electrical contractor.
  • Missing cover / Broken or cracked cover 
A fuse board contains live wires which need to be protected sufficiently to avoid electric shock. A missing or broken cover is a serious Hazard. Contact a registered electrical contractor to rectify this.
  • Faulty or Missing RCD
A Residual Current Device (RCD) disconnects a circuit from the electricity supply instantly when a dangerous fault is detected. It is recommended that customers should check their RCD every three months by pressing the ‘Test’ or ‘T’ button. This simulates a fault and ‘trips’ the switch showing you that the RCD is working correctly. You can then simply reset the switch back to the ‘on’ position. If pressing the button does not trip the switch, it is faulty and you need to arrange for a registered electrical contractor to fix this.
  • Cable Not Terminated Correctly
Cables that are not terminated correctly can cause loose connections which give rise to heat, which can cause damage to customer equipment, electric shock or fire. We recommend that a registered electrical contractor checks and services your fuse board at least every two years.
  • Diazed main fuse in place
A “diazed” (DZ) or “bottle” fuse is an older type main fuse that is present in a large amount of homes in Ireland. Sometimes our installer will recommend that diazed main fuses are upgraded to a newer type as they don’t provide the same level of protection as more modern devices. Contact a registered electrical contractor to discuss the best option for you. 
  • Diazed fuse board in place
Sometimes our Installer will recommend that you replace your diazed fuse board. As with the Diazed fuses explained above, contact a registered electrical contractor to discuss the best option for you.
  • Needs to be upgraded
Our installer may recommend that your fuse board needs to be upgraded for safety and functionality reasons. This may be due to the age and or condition of the unit. It is your responsibility to arrange for a registered electrical contractor to upgrade the fuse board if it is recommended.
  • No main protective device at consumer unit

A main protective device is something which trips when there is an over current in your fuse board. This is an essential safety feature which ensures that your supply will cut off if something goes wrong in your fuse board. A registered electrical contractor can rectify this. 

Damage to ESB equipment

Your electricity supply comes through the ESB Networks main fuse and the ESB Networks meter. Both of these items are sealed, and should never be touched by anyone other than ESB Networks staff. ESB networks are responsible for the upkeep and maintenance of the main ESB meter. Any of the following will be reported to ESB networks if found on site.

  • Broken glass – on the screen of the meter
  • Damaged cover – damage to the casing of the meter
  • Cabinet damage – damage to the outer cabinet
  • Main meter damage – any other damage to the main ESB meter
  • Main Fuse Damage – damage to the main ESB fuse
Other Issues

  • Incoming tails of less than 16mmsq CSA

The ‘tails’ must be of a certain size to ensure a safe supply. If you have been told that your incoming tails are less than 16mmsq CSA then you should contact EBS Networks/ a registered electrical contractor.

  • Incorrect type of cable used for ESB tails

The incoming cable must be tested and cleared as safe to handle your incoming supply. If our installer recommends that the cable be upgraded, we suggest you contact a registered electrical contractor for further advice.
  • High loop impedance
Your ‘Loop impedance’ is a technical term relating to the location of your earth wire which is vital to create a safe path for electricity in the case of a fault. Contact a registered electrical contractor to rectify this.
  • No means of isolating incoming supply
The incoming supply of electricity is live and very dangerous. Our installers can usually determine where the incoming supply is coming from and take safety precautions to install your meter. However, in some cases this cannot be found and our installer cannot proceed for safety reasons. You need to contact a registered electrical contractor to isolate your incoming supply before we can complete your installation safely.
  • Other
Our installer may see something else which requires attention and isn’t mentioned on the above list. Contact a registered electrical contractor for the best advice on how to remedy any issues that may have been highlighted by one of our installers.
What is a Registered Electrical Contractor?
All electrical contractors in Ireland must be registered with one of the two regulatory bodies in Ireland; RECI and ECSSA. The role of these regulatory bodies is to ensure that members work is carried out to the highest levels of safety, in line with the requirements of the Commission for Energy Regulation (CER).
How can I find a registered electrical contractor?

RECI and ECSSA can provide a list of registered electrical contractors. Their contact details are:

Registered Electrical Contractors of Ireland (RECI)
Unit K9, 
KCR Industrial Estate,
Ravensdale Park,
Kimmage,
Dublin 12.
Phone: 01 492 9966
Email: info@reci.ie
Website: www.reci.ie

Electrical Contractors Safety and Standards Association (ECSSA)
Coolmor House,
Park Road,
Killarney,
Co. Kerry.
Call: 064 6637266
Email: info@ecssa.ie
Website: www.ecssa.ie