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Can a switched fused connection unit control multiple spurs?

Discussion in 'Electrics UK' started by d000hg, 24 Oct 2013.

  1. d000hg

    d000hg

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    I'm wiring up a temporary lighting + spur setup in my garage - no fixed wiring to the garage so the whole system will be plugged in only when needed.

    I plan a single spur for a couple of sockets, and a single lighting circuit. I am getting a unit like this so I can turn the whole garage off:

    http://www.screwfix.com/p/13a-switched-fused-connection-unit-neon-flex-outlet-metal-clad/40906

    Will this unit allow be to connect multiple cables or is it a one-cable-in, one-cable-out fitting? In which case, do I need two - one for mains and one for lighting?

    I suppose I'm really asking if I can use this unit as a junction box, or need a junction box and then two switches? I choose switched units so I can be damn sure everything is turned off :)
     
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  3. riveralt

    riveralt

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    The question would be where do you intend to take the initial spur from?
    If it is from a the Consumer Unit then in one instance it could be classed as a new circuit and require the appropriate notification.
    If it from an existing socket then provided that socket is itself not a spur then you can run cable from that socket to the 13A FCU.
    Not sure why you picked this one though - standard plastic one would okay unless there is a likelihood of it being damaged.
    While you could do what you suggest regarding running both sockets and lighting circuit from the load side of the FCU you might also consider the following:
    From the new FCU onwards everything is part of the radial circuit.
    So you could run your two sockets in radial fashion and from one of those sockets run another cable up to a switched FCU (3/5A) and onto the lamp unit.
     
  4. d000hg

    d000hg

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    Thanks; I'm only after metal ones since this is for the garage - on top of breezeblock so not recessed - and therefore more likely to get banged with ladders, etc... I'm going metal for the sockets and switches so it's also just for continuity ;)

    This whole thing is coming off an existing socket on my ring-main, so if I follow your suggestion, do I actually need a second FCU for the lighting?
     
  5. securespark

    securespark

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    Unless you want the light on all the time, yes.
     
  6. riveralt

    riveralt

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    Technically you don't since the Current Carrying Capacity of the minimum cable size 1mm² T&E (16A) clipped direct more than covers the 13A fuse.
    The debatable problem will be the ceiling rose which are rated at 6A - but then you are not going to put a 1kw lamp in there are you? ;)
     
  7. d000hg

    d000hg

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    Well the light will have a standard light-switch regardless if they have a dedicated FCU...
     
  8. JohnW2

    JohnW2

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    I took:
    to mean that the entire garage 'installation' is to be be plugged into a socket in the house, when required.
    If my above interpretation is correct, I don't think that anyone could really claim that plugging anything (including 'the garage installation') into a 13A socket (with a 13A fuse in the plug) was non-compliant, even if the socket were an unfused spur - and even though, if it were a double socket, there would still be one free socket outlet on that unfused spur into which people could plug other loads. On the other had, as you imply, if, instead of plugging a 13A-fused plug into the socket, one hard wired the socket to a 13A FCU, that would be technically non-compliant if the socket were on an unfused spur. Particularly if it were a single socket, then one might argue that such a difference is not totally logical!

    Kind Regards, John
     
  9. d000hg

    d000hg

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    John, you're correct - this isn't even wired into a 13A socket but plugged in - I plan to wire the garage up then plug it into a socket in the house using an extension cable. I would like to get a permanent cable one day but even that would be a spur off a socket or even using a standard plug... however using a FCU makes me happier I can guarantee the garage is isolated even if someone plugs it in inside the house without me knowing :)
     
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  11. stillp

    stillp

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    Is this an attached garage? How will the cable from the plug in the house to the garage be run?
     
  12. JohnW2

    JohnW2

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    As I said, unless someone disagrees with me, I think that it would be hard to think of any regulation which prevented you plugging anything into any 13A socket. Given that there will already be a 13A fuse in the plug, there's not really anything to be gained by having a further fuse in an FCU - to get the desired ability to 'switch off' the power in the garage, even if someone had plugged it in at the house, you could just use a 20A (ideally double-pole) switch (with a neon if you wanted!).

    Kind Regards, John
     
  13. riveralt

    riveralt

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    Sounds like a right dogs dinner - why don't you just do the job properly now?
     
  14. d000hg

    d000hg

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    Temporarily, only when in use - our row of houses have a row garages opposite from the back door across about 20ft of tarmac which is not owned by the houses.

    Traffic is thankfully of the "practically non-existent" variety... I can't leave the cable out but for a couple of hours when using the garage for a gym or something, it's fine.

    I hope to get permission to lay an armoured cable under the tarmac, but not immediately.
     
  15. riveralt

    riveralt

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    Glad to see you are willing to test your insurance policy out - doing what you propose to do - I would check the small print - very carefully.

    I would do it that way before the claims start coming in.
     
  16. stillp

    stillp

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    If you don't own the strip of tarmac, I'm not sure if you can legally lay a cable across it without the owner's permission. How will you stop people tripping over the cable, or cutting it and getting electrocuted, or pinching the cable?
     
  17. d000hg

    d000hg

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    That they're not blithering idiots? It is a private cul-de-sac for me and my immediate neighbours, who I know. It's not a back-street on a terraced street... typically one person uses it for a car about every 2 days and I think only one of our neighbours walks on it at all... it's essentially dead space.
     
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