Electrical Wiring: Light your Home with 11 Cares

1. Skilled Electrician
2. Use ISI marked Wires & Accessories
3. Proper Wire Gauge
4. Fix Switchboards at proper height
5. Never use damaged wiring
6. Wires within an electrical box
7. Importance of RCCB
8. Ensure Earthing Connection
9. Electrical layout
10. Different Circuits
11. Proper dressing of Wire and Wire Code

With so much dependence on our electrical appliances and electronics, we are bound to get frustrated and worried when the electric power in our home is cut off or other related problems.

Electrical faults are common in each and every house that may be unsafe for residents. When it is about your home you must be aware of the electrical mistakes and their effects. Because when you start living in your home and experience electric faults it may create hassles in your life.

For a homeowner, it is important that you should know about the things to be taken care of during house wiring to avoid any challenges in the future. When your electrician is doing electrical installations as part of the remodelling project of your house or during the construction of the house, you should have some amount of knowledge about the house wiring.

In case of defects in electrical wires, they can cause hazards in the house and may even take human life in some cases. So make sure you do the following to ensure good electric works for safety at home:

1. Skilled Electrician

Always ensure to hire a professional or a good electrician for all electric works including wiring of your home.

2. Use ISI marked Wires & Accessories

All materials to be used in electrical fittings should be of approved standards and from a reputed manufacturer as per ISI specifications. Non ISI marked wires could have less longevity, are less safer and non-eco-friendly as compared to ISI marked wire. Never use low-quality materials as it may cause serious accidents.

3. Proper Wire Gauge

Many times it is seen that electricians are careless while using right load bearing wires for wiring purpose and these wires get burnt when the entire load is put on wires. So, make sure that the wires being used for wiring are capable of taking the desired load. For that, electrician must calculate the total load from various items that would be used in the house. As per standards, it is advisable that the wiring gauge used for phase, neutral & earthing connection must be the same.

4. Fix Switchboards at proper height

Switchboards should be installed at a height that can be easily accessed by residents except by children. Standard height of board with installation are:

a. TV socket height 1200 mm to 1500 mm
b. Lighting switchboard height 1000 mm to 1200 mm
c. Geyser socket height 1900 mm minimum
d. AC socket height 2100 mm minimum

All heights are from Finished Floor Level. These heights can be changed as per requirement of residents e.g., in case there is physically disabled person or senior citizen.

5. Never use damaged wiring

Broken/ cut wiring, loose connection, burnt element and rusted points should never be used to avoid electrical fault. Never make use of damaged insulation wiring to avoid short circuit fault. Damaged and loose connection should not be done in any appliance to avoid earthing fault.

6. Wires within an electrical box

Wires within an electrical box should be away from the edges to avoid being damaged while nailing.

7. Importance of RCCB

While electricity has become an important component of everyone’s lives, the fact of the matter is, it comes with its dangers to human life as well as equipment. Electrocution and fire are the two significant risks correlated with electricity, one simply cannot be careless when it comes to safeguarding equipment.

A Residual Current Circuit Breaker1 (RCCB) is a safety device that provides protection even from a small leakage current generated by human touch or insulation failure of wire, also can be referred a Minimal shock protection device. Read to know: Why RCCB is a must?

8. Ensure Earthing Connection

It is important to provide proper earthing to the wiring as it saves human life from the danger of electric shock or death. There are two earthing – Ground earthing and earthing by electrical supply. So make sure both earthing is provided.

And it is also important to provide earthing at electrical outlets for High wattage appliances like geyser, AC etc Provide earthing to enhance voltage and protect human beings from sudden electric shock.

9. Electrical layout

It is important to follow the electrical layout for location and height at which provision to be given for fitting/ installation. But electrician has to wisely see if there is a safety concern involved, in that case, specification can be changed. To understand more, read Switchboard near gas stove – safety hazard.

10. Different Circuits

The power circuit and lighting circuit should be different. This will be helpful for convenience in repair or maintenance during a fault in a power circuit or vice versa.

11. Proper Dressing of Wire and Wire Code

Improper dressing of wire can lead to overheating & current loss. It can also create inconvenience during repair or maintenance. Wire colour code is important for identifying the phase, earthing and neutral connection. It provides safety2 and ease during repair & maintenance. Also, ensure proper wire joints for longevity.

Conclusion

Electricity has made our lives more comfortable and easy in so many ways – but that does not mean it comes without its risks. Electrical wires are the basic unit of every electrical system. Most of the electrical failures are caused due to failure of electrical wires. People often ignore their significance. Our objective behind writing this content was to make you aware of things to be taken care of during home electrical wiring. And if you are facing any problem with your home electrical system, then contact professionals to ensure safety at home.

5 Ways To Make your Home Shock Proof For Kids

In present day to day lives, we are all surrounded by electrical products and spend our entire day around it. Whether it is lights, cables, wires or switchboards or power outlets, extension cables, phone chargers or any other electrical appliance, everything is related to electricity in a way. Electrical appliances are now a necessity to use. But, when you live in a house with kids, you need to be more cautious about the surroundings. You need to manage the electrical appliances in such a way that it does not come within the reach of kids. Because even a second of negligence can result in serious consequences. So, it’s better to be extra vigilant when it is about safety of kids at home.

When we talk about child proofing a home, the first thing that our mind visualizes is a kid inserting his finger in an electrical socket. Doesn’t it? This is one of most vulnerable zone for kids. As we all know, electric current moves at an alarming pace and any direct contact can result in anything from minor distress to disabling the person, and causing death as well. Thus, a home needs to be shockproof for kids. So in this blog, we will be giving you a few tips to make your home shockproof for kids:

1. Use of sockets with safety shutter/ guard

Kids and babies are somehow extremely interested in electrical sockets, and they tend to put their finger, keys or any other object in them. And you know how fatal that can be. So, the best way to prevent shock through electrical sockets is to install sockets with safety shutter1/ guard inside.

2. Make Use of Socket Safety cover

More often than not, kids try to imitate their parents and put plugs in sockets which can be dangerous. To avoid this, make use of socket safety cover2 which will restrict babies from putting finger directly into electrical sockets or inserting any other object in the socket which may cause electrocution.

3. Use ISI marked wires in your electrical system

Non ISI marked wires are less fire resistant and have tendency to melt with high loads. They also do not have good insulation. Non ISI marked wires will have less longevity, are less safer/ eco-friendly as compared to ISI marked wires. So, it is better to have ISI marked wires which will be a step towards safer home and also would be better in longer run. This practice is not specifically to be done only for childproofing but it is useful for safety of everyone.

4. Install plugs and switches properly

If possible, fix switches and plugs at a certain height, out of reach of children.

For switchboards which can or may come in reach of kids in bathroom and balcony area, Splash guard can be installed over the switch board. Splashguard is a cover for switch/ socket board from splashing of water in wet areas.

5. Check other Electronic devices

Kids are more likely to climb over television sets, get interested due to their colours and visuals. So, parents need to make sure that their television sets are secured properly to the wall and better to be mounted at certain height away from their reach.

In bathrooms, appliances like electric trimmers and water heaters should be used cautiously. Since water is an excellent conductor of electricity, care should be taken while using small appliances near sinks. We must not leave these gadgets unattended with kids. All the light fittings and electrical outlets must be appropriately away from the shower area. In kitchen as well, appliances like microwave, OTG, toasters, etc, must be unplugged after use, so that kids might not turn them on accidentally.

Conclusion

You cannot bind the children in any particular space, but you can certainly create a safe zone for them by installing proper electrical devices/ components at your home. Ideally, all the wires should be away from children’s reach, and all kinds of old, cracked or tattered cords & damaged electrical outlets must be avoided. Hopefully above tips help you to make your home safe for kids.

Apart from shock proofing your home for kids, the best all-round protection from electric shock for any home is a well-planned installation of electrical system, consisting of high-quality ISI marked Wires and Cables, Miniature Circuit Breaker (MCB), Safety Device and Residual Current Circuit Breaker (RCCB). To know more regarding Electrical safety at home, you can read our blog.

And, If you require your electrical system to be checked/ inspected, you can visit our service page.

Prevent Electrical hazards at home in this extended Monsoon

1. Never On/ Off the switches With Wet Hands
2. Unplug all electronic devices during thunderstorms
3. Close windows located near plug points during rain showers
4. Use the correct Size and Type of Electrical Wire
5. Protect the socket board in balcony area/ Terrace
6. Prevent Dampness and Water Leakage/ Seepage

Water is one of the important resources used for generating electricity. I think this is one of the known fact but you would be surprised to know that water and electricity never go hand in hand!

Electricity and water are a dangerous combination, and using electrical appliances can be a matter of life and death if it comes in contact with water.

It is rainy season and you probably have your home moist. It is very important to take safety precautions during the rainy season.

Homes need to be protected in the rainy seasons so that the houses do not catch fire, or so that any other electrical damage does not take place. It is to be seen that rains cause heavier electrical damage than any other season and therefore, precautions should be taken accordingly. There are many simple things that you can do to protect your home from rain and avoid electrical accidents.

Mostly such accidents happen due to negligence of the user on the part of electrical safety rules. In this article, we are therefore mentioning some electrical safety tips that you can do to protect your home, loved ones, and avoid accidents caused due to electricity.

As this time, monsoon is extended due to weather changes, so we thought to make you aware of some safety tips to prevent electrical shock for current weather.

Below are simple electrical safety tips that can be followed to save yourself and loved ones from fatal accidents.

1. Never On/ Off the switches With Wet Hands

One of the simplest rule is – Never touch any fuse or switch with wet hands during monsoon.

When you touch a switch with wet hands, there is a possibility of water going inside the switch and coming in contact with the exposed metallic electrical parts of the switch. Water, being a good conductor of electricity will immediately pass the current to your body through your hands. Thereby resulting in a mild to severe shock to you depending on the water content. To avoid this possibility of an electric shock, it is advised that we should not operate any electrical switch with wet hands.

When you come back home in a wet condition, dry yourself first, before switching your gadgets on. You can use a wooden material object like scale or other object made from poor conductors of electricity to manage switches, if necessary.

2. Unplug all electronic devices during thunderstorms

Lightning is a common thing during monsoon, during which current can be conducted inside your home through electronic wires resulting in major fire accidents.

Using plugged in appliances during a lightning storm is risky, not because it attracts lightning (no way that it could) but because, it is connected to earthing line, if by chance, a lightning discharge could happen to strike the building or the ground around building. Thereby electrical current could be conducted through the building’s wiring to the appliance, and then to the user.

3. Close windows located near plug points during rain showers

It is the general thing to shut all doors and windows during heavy rains. Even if you do not follow this convention, you must check if your electrical fittings are near the windows. Rain droplets may enter your home from there and moisten the plug points, making them vulnerable. So always try to close windows near electrical plug points.

4. Use the Correct Size and Type of Electrical Wire

Always remember to use electrical wires of adequate capacity with ISI marks as per load. Similarly, all the electrical appliances like Air conditioner, Washing machine, Microwave oven, Water heater etc., should be of ISI mark from well-reputed manufacturers.

5. Protect the socket board in Balcony/ Terrace area

Usually in some houses, electrical outlet is provided at balcony area for washing machine. There are chances of rainwater coming in contact the electrical outlet. So better to use splash guard (Splash proof box cover1) for this electrical outlet (socket board).

6. Prevent Dampness and Water Leakage/ Seepage

Always try to avoid the dampness or leakage/ seepage problem in your home especially the area with electrical outlets like electrical system and switches. Also see to it that water does not come in contact with the electrical wiring of your house. This happens mostly due to seepage/ leakage or other sources of moisture. Do not touch any electrical appliance that comes in contact with water.

Apart from this, one more point to be taken care before/ after monsoon i.e. to avoid accidents, get all your electrical fittings checked before & after monsoons, which would be a good practise. Loose fittings and improper connections increase chances of electric shocks.

Conclusion

Through these preventive tips, our objective was to make you all aware about how to protect yourself from electrical hazards in this weather. If one follows these electrical safety tips, it is possible to avoid accidents occurring due to electrical hazards like electrical shocks and fire, which can be more dangerous than one can imagine.

Home Electricals System – Some Basic Questions Answered

As a home owner, one should know the basic parameters of the electrical system of the home one lives in.

Electrical system is a huge system divided into generation, transmission and distribution system, all the parts being taken care off by respective departments. The wiring inside a house can be a complicated matter for the owner but some basic things are easy to be kept in mind by the owner. Firstly in a home the standard voltage is 220V.

Here are answers to some of the basic home electrical system questions:

Q-1. Should a home have a DB and what are the components inside the DB?

Ans. Every home must have a DB. A DB stands for Distribution Box. DB is a component of an electricity supply system that divides electrical power and feeds into subsidiary circuits, with protective circuit breaker for each circuit in a common enclosure. One must ensure that each DB is with MCB for each circuit and also RCCB is installed. Once you are assured that DB with accessories are present then get it inspected for proper amperage, operation, safety and even load distribution.

Q-2.Why RCCB is a must?

Ans. RCCB stands for Residual Current Circuit Breaker which has been designed to protect a circuit from leakage fault. RCCB is a must because it provides protection even from a small leakage current generated by human touch or insulation failure of wire. MCB does not provide this level of protection. So the home owner / seller / buyer must ensure that RCCB has been installed at the home.

Q-3. What is electrical wire colour code and why is it important?

Ans. One must have got confused at some time on the sight of different colour wires in electrical wiring. Questions arise for the different colours of wires such as why different colours and why not same colour? For your information the wire colours used, are based on the Electrical colour code for wires which defers from country to country. In India for a single phase (220V) electrical wiring, the code followed is RGB i.e. Red colour wire for Phase, Green colour wire for earthing and Black colour wire for neutral connection. In case of three phase, two more colours are followed – Blue and Yellow, in which case, Red, Blue and Yellow coloured wired are used for phase connection, Green for Earthing and Black for neutral. So now you know which colour wire stands for phase, neutral and earthing in your wiring system.

Q-4. Earthing connection provided at which of the three-pin socket points?

Ans. The first thing that comes to mind is that at which terminal / hole in a 3 pin socket is the earthing terminal? Generally Earthing terminals are of a higher diameter. Hence checks to be done for earthing connection, which is a must as it protects against the leakage current causing shocks.

Electrical Safety Code Compliance for Homes

Power always brings with it responsibility, so use it well

Allow us to walk you through some of the common general requirements for home electrical systems or electrical code compliance for residential wirings. Many homeowners ignore the precautionary measures that must be undertaken when buying or selling a home. To understand the various electrical loopholes one must undertake an electrical inspection without fail. Home owners, buyers or sellers may consider electrical inspection to be burdensome but it is a necessity to identify any defects before they pose a serious hazard to human health and property alike.

Introduction on codes

In India IS (Indian Standard) codes is followed for wiring and electrical installation, the materials used must be ISI (Indian Standard Institute) certified & marked. Every home or building must adhere to these rules. The codes have been divided into massive sections, sub sections and clauses which have been made as well as modified with time and respect to different loads, usage, age and safety. Violation of codes is a punishable offence but the most important violation is bringing danger to life and property. Here we have listed some general codes that can be followed easily.

Cable – Cable is generally made of Aluminum or copper cables for main circuit. Flexible wires are used for internal wiring. The most important thing whether it may be cable or flexible wires is insulation which protects the wire or cable from wear and tear. PVC insulation as per IS code is must.

Distribution Box – Distribution box of any brand which is ISI certified may be used. Clear and permanent identification marks must be provided in all distribution boards and a residual current operated device or equally effective device must be installed for precaution against earth leakage or faults.

Wiring – Different wire gauge are available but use of minimum 1.5 sq mm wire for lighting circuit and 2.5 sq mm for power socket is recommended. Earthing is the most vital part in any circuit so it may be ensured that a separate earth wire is run in the lighting installation to provide earthing for plug points, fixtures and equipments. Each 15A (now 16A) socket outlet provided in buildings for the use of domestic appliances such as air conditioner, water cooler etc. should be provided with individual miniature circuit breaker provided in the distribution/sub distribution board.

Bedroom / Living area – Every room must have a lighting switch board located at the entrance beside the door. In bedrooms it is recommended that some lighting be controlled from the bed position.

Bathroom – It is recommended to use ceiling lighting with the switch located outside the bathroom. However if the light switch is installed inside the bathroom, it should be out of reach of a person in a bath tub or under the shower.

Kitchen – Light fittings in kitchen should be so placed that all working surfaces are well illuminated and no shadow falls on them when in normal use. The Socket-Outlets should not be located centrally behind the appliances for which they are used.

External area – Waterproof lighting fittings should be used for outdoors. The switches that are installed outdoors should be weatherproof.

Halls & Staircase – Two way switching for lighting is recommended and the lighting facilities provided must cover lighting of all steps.

What is an Electrical Inspection?

An Electrical Inspection refers to the thorough check-up of the electrical connections and wiring, load balance, condition of electrical components installed in your home and mostly importantly the safety features.

Why is Electrical Inspection Important?

There are many reasons behind the necessity of getting an electrical inspection done. Some of the most common ones are:

  • Protection against possible surges: This is a common phenomenon generated due to an abnormally high voltage lasting for a short period of time in different regions, especially when there is a storm. Electrical Power surge can not only ruin your appliances, but can also create short circuits in your house. When the inspection is being done, the inspector will check for different points in the wiring that can cause this type of mishap and ensure that proper safety measurements are being taken.
  • Fire: Many a times it has been seen that an electrical short circuit has been the reason behind a fire breakout in a house. These short circuits are caused by loose wires, overheating wires / cables and electrical equipments in the meter or at the cable shaft / duct. During the inspection, the inspector can recognize these faults and ask you to rectify them.
  • Shocks: Imagine touching an electronic equipment and immediately experiencing a surging electric current in your body. Although the impact may not be that disastrous; however, this could lead to other mishaps easily. Apart from this, faulty earthing connection in an electronic appliance can easily hamper its performance or can render it completely non-workable. An electrical inspector can catch these faults in the wiring in time to rectify them.

Scope of Electrical Inspection

  • General electrical inspection on the present condition of the electrical system comprising of Power / UPS socket, electrical switchboards, D.B accessories, lights, etc.
  • Inspection of wirings (findings include faulty / loosely connected / old / under gauge wire which may result in electrical leakages and short circuits).
  • Earthing System inspection.
  • Three phase Load Distribution.
  • Inspection of the three phase meter / sub meter (For ensuring that there is no fault at the meter).
  • Electrical Safety & Fire safety aspects.
  • DB Charting (in case required).

About MACJ – A Buyer’s Choice Home Inspections

We being a professional home / property inspection company urge you to perform Electrical Inspection for Homes. MACJ – A Buyer’s Choice Home Inspections comprise of experienced technical personnel and we have inspected more than 1,000 properties including apartments, standalone units, bungalows, Office space, studios and even heritage type buildings where we have been able to detect and provide remedy for numerous electrical problems / issues which have benefitted our customers. Infact, most of them have rectified there problems / issues as per our advice and are happy and satisfied that they got their home inspection done at the right time.

We inspect your home as our own. Your Safety is our first priority and a proper home inspection is our commitment.

For more information on electrical inspection and safety, visit our website – www.macj-abuyerschoice.com/electrical-inspections-of-a-home-property & www.macj-abuyerschoice.com/electrical-safety-homes

Electrical Safety at Homes

Electricity can turn you off.
Be careful with power, or this will be your last hour!
Be an Electrical safety hero. Score an accident zero.

Electricity is part of our lives. We use it from the moment we wake up and throughout the day. Although we feel intolerable without electricity, the fact is that numerous accidents, mostly fire related accidents are caused due to electric hazards. Electric current can race through a person who contacts an energized electrical circuit or an object or that has become energized, such as metal and water. The current can cause a shock, severe burns, heart attack, or electrocution. Even a small amount of current can be fatal. We sometimes forget how powerful and dangerous electric faults can be, and so though not always but at maximum times we are the ones to be blamed for the electrocution or fire caused by electricity. The simple reason is negligence from our side be it while laying an electrical layout, while supervision of work or during usage e,g. wire connections ,wire jointing  or wire gauge. Hence, make electrical safety at home one of your prime concerns.

Potential Intrusion/Damage Areas

Whereas an electrical fault can occur at any point at the entire wiring system, the main potential areas are:

  • Meter room
  • Distribution Box in your home / flat / apartment
  • High wattage electrical Appliances
  • Overheating wires
  • Socket outlets and lighting fittings

Damages

The human body conducts electricity very well. That means electricity passes very easily throughout the body. Direct contact with electrical current can be deadly.

  • Electrical shock can result in paralysis, minor or major burns, heart attack.
  • Fire caused due to electrical fault, overheating or electrocution can create huge damage to both life and property.
  • The worst damage it may cause is death.

Some Warning Signs:

Majority of the times general accidents occur due to electrical issues from the symptoms that are in front of us but generally we overlook those things. We are providing a general list of the things one needs to take care of as soon as you observe such instances at your home:

  • MCB (Miniature Circuit Breaker) that trips frequently or sparks during operating
  • Flickering lights
  • Overheating —Wires getting heated quickly, Discolored switch plates or outlet covers (though not visible usually)
  • Electrical shocks — even a mild tingle
  • Damaged wire insulation (though not visible usually)

Safety Issue: Double phase power used in single phase switch board.

Naked wire used for switch to switch parallel connections, will increase current loss and decrease efficiency.

Switch socket board close to sink, will get affected due to water splashing during sink use.

Visual Image of Electrical Joint Box

IR image showing heating at wire joints inside due to faulty connection.

Some Basic Electrical Safety Tips:

An electrical system at home consists of large aspects and needs expert supervision but there are few basic things which can be taken care by anyone. Some such things are mentioned below:

1) Always use RCCB (Residual Current Circuit Breaker) for short circuit protection or shock protection.
2) Keep switch / socket boards away from reach of children, use safety caps on all unused electrical outlets.
3) Ensure along with the assistance of a licensed technical personnel that the earthing system is working fine at your home.
4) Do not use any electrical appliance or operate switch / socket bare foot at wet areas. Remember that water and electricity are a deadly combination.
5) Do not keep any electrical point close to shower / bathtub / sink / wet areas.
6) Do not use any electrical appliances during thunderstorm / wind / rainy weather; better to keep them off during those times.
7) Always use IS marked electrical products.
8) Always get your electrical works done by a licensed electrician.
9) Never attempt to repair any kind of electrical fault by yourself until you are an electrician or electrical engineer.
10) Do not plug a bunch of stuff (sockets / instruments) into one outlet or extension cord.
11) Do not pull out an electrical cord from the socket board by pressure.
12) Do make sure all electric cords are tucked away, neat and tidy.
13) Gets professional home inspection of your home done periodically to know the details of your home including electrical safety.

Our experience and expertise – MACJ – A Buyers Choice Home Inspections

We being a professional home inspection company comprises of experienced technical personnel and we have inspected more than 800 homes in apartments, standalone units, bungalows, Office space and even heritage type buildings in Kolkata alone where we have been able to detect and provide remedy for numerous electrical problems / issues which have benefitted our customers. Infact, most of them have rectified there problems / issues as per our advice and are happy and satisfied that they got their home inspection done at the right time. We inspect your home as our own. Your Safety is our first priority and a proper home inspection is our commitment.

Key Parameters of Our Inspection:

1) Electrical Safety (Our first priority during inspection).
2) Thorough inspection of the electrical wiring system  (Detailed Wiring connection & Wire Gauge)
3) Inspection of each and every switch / socket boards (Operation and wiring).
4) Position of installation of electrical fan, light points, switch & socket boards.
5) Need Based DB / MCB charting (Value added service that comes with every inspection giving you the exact location of the load distributed from each MCB)
6) We ensure you home free of electrical shock & electrical accident, and better service life of electrical equipment along with electrical safety.