Whether you have been living in a house for several decades or have recently moved into an old property, there is a good chance the fuse box (mains board,consumer unit) looks just as old as the house itself. In such situations most homeowners are overwhelmed with a few common questions – Is my fuse box dangerous? Do I need to update my fuse box? Or Do I need to update my mains board for the sake of safety?
Well, these are the questions most of the homeowners ponder over, but only an experienced electrician is the right person to answer these questions.
When Do You Need To Replace Your Fuse Box?
Like anything in life, technology moves on and with that so does safety . However, since your fuse box is old and was correctly fitted to standard of it’s time.
That doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to upgrade or replace it completely.
But you have to remember that old fuse box’s only trip when they are over loaded. They do not protect against electric shock or other fault conditions as they do not have 30ma RCD’s fitted like a new consumer unit has.
You need to upgrade your fuse box only then if an electrical inspection is performed and the electrician picks out problems with reference to British Safety Standards.
However, if the wiring in your house is satisfactory but your fuse box and earthing to the water and gas are out dated and in need of attention due to safety issues, you should think about having them updated.
The biggest advantage of having a new fuse box fitted is the fact that all current mains boards have to fitted with an RCD or with individual RCBO’S.
Don’t worry if this sounds confusing, you just need to think of an RCD as a really sensitive circuit breaker that is going to trip really fast in fault conditions.
How Long Does It Take to Update A Fuse Box?
The time it takes to change a fuse box can vary from property to property but from my experience it will usually take anywhere up to 4 hours.
In some cases it can take longer if there is a fault on a given circuit, this has to be rectified as the RCD will keep tripping if the fault is not cleared.
In some cases the earthing to the water and gas will need to be upgraded to 10mm green and yellow cable so this will be taken into consideration by the electrician who is carrying out the installation.
Should I Get A Certificate For My New Mains Board?
Yes! When you have a new mains board fitted your electrician should then test every circuit in the house and complete a domestic installation certificate for you and register that job with the relevant electrical scheme and building control.
How Much Does it Cost To Update Your Fuse Box?
A new fuse box or consumer unit should cost between £300 and £450. Along with the upgrading of the fuse box you should also get new tails and earth, earthing to water and gas, then your test and certification.
All this in most cases takes a day to complete and you can then have piece of mind that your electrical installation is up to the current wiring standards and is safe for you and your family.
Newbold Electrical specialise in fuse box changes and will upgrade your old fuse box and bring you up to date with the least amount of disruption as possible.
For a free quote, contact us on 07974698334 or 01332 631469