Confusion in the Consumer unit

Discussion in 'Electrics UK' started by gazmo30, 18 Mar 2007.

  1. gazmo30

    gazmo30

    Joined:
    22 Oct 2005
    Messages:
    10
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    I live in a victorian house which was propably re-wired in the 80's. What i can't understand, with my limited knowledge of electrics, is how it is wired. In the CU i have a 30amp fused marked ring power. This feeds 2 double sockets in the lounge, 2 doubles in the dinning room and all the sockets upstairs. I also have a 15amp fuse marked 'power lounge & dinning' which serves one double socket in the lounge. Does this sound correct?? Is it possible for somebody to explain the ring power as the last socket in the dinning room only has one wire running to it!! Should the last socket not run back to the CU??

    FYI there are also fuses for the kitchen, lights up, lights down, immersion heater and cooker.
     
  2. Sponsored Links
  3. breezer

    breezer

    Joined:
    3 Jan 2003
    Messages:
    23,324
    Thanks Received:
    30
    Location:
    Sussex
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    its a radial socket.

    see the wiki for more info
     
  4. davy_owen_88

    davy_owen_88

    Joined:
    17 Nov 2006
    Messages:
    1,680
    Thanks Received:
    2
    Location:
    West Glamorgan
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    The socket with only one wire could be a spur from the ring circuit, or it could be incorrectly labelled and actually be a radial circuit.

    Ideally you should have one fuse for upstairs sockets and one fuse for downstairs sockets, but over time additions are made, bits are removed and it becomes the mess you have there today.

    Is there a problem that has prompted you to look into the electrics or are you just curious :D
     
  5. gazmo30

    gazmo30

    Joined:
    22 Oct 2005
    Messages:
    10
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    Thanks for the propmt reply. Can the power ring be a radial circuit?? From looking at the site, i thought a 30amp fuse meant it should come back to the CU?
     
  6. davy_owen_88

    davy_owen_88

    Joined:
    17 Nov 2006
    Messages:
    1,680
    Thanks Received:
    2
    Location:
    West Glamorgan
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    Depends on the cable size used. If it is run in 4mm² twin and earth then a radial can be protected by a 30A fuse.
     
  7. gazmo30

    gazmo30

    Joined:
    22 Oct 2005
    Messages:
    10
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    No problems, none of the fuses have ever blown, but we are going to decorate and could do with some further double sockets added. So i am curious as to why there is only one socket on the fuse and wondering if more sockets can be added safely!!

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    no all the cable is 2.5mm2 twin and earth
     
  8. davy_owen_88

    davy_owen_88

    Joined:
    17 Nov 2006
    Messages:
    1,680
    Thanks Received:
    2
    Location:
    West Glamorgan
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    It will be safe to add more sockets but only when you have a thorough knowledge of how everything is wired.

    You have a 2.5mm² radial protected by a 15A fuse - this is fine and you can add more sockets from that socket.

    You have a socket in the lounge with only one wire going to it. If you can verify that 'ring power' it is actually a ring circuit then that socket is a spur and no further sockets can be powered from it. If it is not a ring circuit and is run in 2.5mm² cable it is incorrectly labelled and incorrectly fused and should be changed to 15A.

    Do you have a multimeter with continuity function?
     
  9. gazmo30

    gazmo30

    Joined:
    22 Oct 2005
    Messages:
    10
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    Sorry, i have confused the situation. The 'power lounge & dinning' 15amp fuse only serves one double socket in the lounge. And i assume this is a radial circuit as it only has one wire to it. Can i also assume that further sockets can be added to this?

    Yes i do have a mulitmeter with continuity function
     
  10. Sponsored Links
  11. davy_owen_88

    davy_owen_88

    Joined:
    17 Nov 2006
    Messages:
    1,680
    Thanks Received:
    2
    Location:
    West Glamorgan
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    If you are sure the socket in the lounge is powered from the 15A fuse and is not a spur from somewhere else you are free to add as many sockets as you like from it.

    If you want to check that the 'ring power' circuit is actually a ring then take out the fuse, check the circuit is dead and do a continuity test between between the 2 cables. If there is no continuity and the cables are 2.5mm² you either have a break in the ring (check every socket and tighten up the terminals) or you have a radial which is incorrectly fused and should be replaced with a 15A fuse.
     
  12. didthathurt

    didthathurt

    Joined:
    19 Aug 2006
    Messages:
    311
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Location:
    Kent
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    Or even a 20Amp fuse provided the cable does not pass through insulation or does not need any other de-rating. If you are going to extend the radial you refer to I'd also replace that 15Amp fuse carrier with a 20 Amp version. As RF would say, though, a pic of the board and the fuses might just give us a little more info to go on.
     
  13. gazmo30

    gazmo30

    Joined:
    22 Oct 2005
    Messages:
    10
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    OK, thanks for all the help so far. It makes me more at ease regards the 'power lounge & dinning' circuit and that more sockets can be added safely. I am still a little concerned by the 'power ring'. In an ideal world i assume that all the circuits in the lounge and dinning room should be on the 'power lounge & dinning' fuse. Is it worth getting all the sockets in these two rooms onto that fuse and making it into a ring circuit??

    I will also test the 'power ring' to see if it is a ring circuit and change the fuses.
     
  14. didthathurt

    didthathurt

    Joined:
    19 Aug 2006
    Messages:
    311
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Location:
    Kent
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    That depends on what it would entail from a house bashing point of view and what you aim to power from these sockets. There's nothing at all wrong with a radial circuit - the rest of Europe uses them extensively. I prefer to install a 2.5mm radial to kitchen refits for the fridge and freezer power, for example. If 20Amps is enough (gives you about 4.5kW to play with) and, IMHO unless you plan to use a couple of fan heaters it probably will be, don't fix what ain't broke.
     
  15. gazmo30

    gazmo30

    Joined:
    22 Oct 2005
    Messages:
    10
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    OK, two more questions to really set my mind at ease. If i want to add a few more sockets in the dinning room, can i run a new cable from an existing socket and add a spur (the dinning room sockets are fed by the 30amp 'power ring')?

    If i want to add more sockets in the lounge, can i create a radial circuit from the existing 1 double socket which is on the 15amp 'power lounge & dinning' circuit?
     
  16. davy_owen_88

    davy_owen_88

    Joined:
    17 Nov 2006
    Messages:
    1,680
    Thanks Received:
    2
    Location:
    West Glamorgan
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    If you have ring continuity there should be 2 cables at every socket. If there are 3 or 1 then it is not a suitable location to take a feed for more sockets.

    There can only be one un-fused spur from a socket, and you can not spur from another spur. Fitting a fused spur rated at 13A allows you to power as many sockets as you chose from the load terminals.


    Yes. Use 2.5mm² twin and earth.
     
  17. gazmo30

    gazmo30

    Joined:
    22 Oct 2005
    Messages:
    10
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    Thank you davy_owen_88 and didthathurt for your help.
     
  18. DIYnot Local

    DIYnot Local

    Joined:
    3 Sep 2019
    Country:
    United Kingdom

    If you need to find a tradesperson to get your job done, please try our local search below, or if you are doing it yourself you can find suppliers local to you.

    Select the supplier or trade you require, enter your location to begin your search.


    Are you a trade or supplier? You can create your listing free at DIYnot Local

     
Loading...

Share This Page