Electrical work?

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Hello,

I have recently had some electrical work done on the house and had some new switches put in. Once of which was in a cupboard where the boiler used to be. So this was a fused switch before hand and the electrician has put on a normal switch instead which is what I asked for. I did inform him that the boiler runs from this switch as the electrician used the same cable run when the boiler was moved so this switch essentially runs the boiler and switches on the light in the cupboard. He said this was fine when changing the switches from a fused switch to a 1 gang 2 way switch as the wiring was correct for the boiler and the light.

I have since found that when I switch the light off the boiler goes off and when I switch on the light the boiler comes back on again. So I spoke to him and he basically said its not his problem he has done the work required and is requesting more money to fix it! I have explained to him about the switch linking to the boiler and the light and his acknowledgement of this but still refused to budge on this.

I am wondering now if with the fused switch this was doing the same thing before and I never noticed it before (now its winter) or if it was working correctly before and regardless of the switch position the boiler would stay on?

Do I now need to change the face to a fused face or can I change the wiring as its a 2 way switch to keep the boiler on regardless of the position of the switch?

I hope all this makes sense....

Thanks

James
 
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Well, the boiler must be controlled by a 3A fused switch so if he has removed this and not put one somewhere else then it is wrong.

Obviously you do not want a light and boiler on the same switch.

You said 'one-gang, two-way'.
Did you mean a 'two-gang', i.e two switches on one plate?
 
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Can we see a picture please? A photo also showing the wiring behind the switch would be useful. here's how http://www.diynot.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=129539

Also. The boiler must have a fuse in its supply - 3amp is the normal. Without the correct fuse the boiler electronics and programmer, valves etc are at risk in the event of a fault. I have seen the results where even the wrong size fuse had been in the circuit, it cost the householder over £1000 to get his heating system up and running again!

Also - there must be an isolation switch that switches off both the live and neutral connections to the boiler. A regular light switch normally only switches the live, so is not correct.

I can tell you that most plumbers will not work on a system unless the isolation is not correct.

What he has done is wrong. If you told himto do it, then you are going to have to discuss, between you, how this can be resolved.
 
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I have since found that when I switch the light off the boiler goes off and when I switch on the light the boiler comes back on again. So I spoke to him and he basically said its not his problem he has done the work required and is requesting more money to fix it! I have explained to him about the switch linking to the boiler and the light and his acknowledgement of this but still refused to budge on this.
Is he actually a properly qualified electrician?
 
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Can I ask is the boiler and light are on a lighting circuit or a socket based circuit.

If on a socket based circuit, the light should have a switched FCU or a FCU + a switch. Also like other people have said, the boiler should also be on a switched FCU with a 3 amp fuse in it.

Is he actually a properly qualified electrician?

I doubt it and even if he is, he is not a good one for what he did.

If you told him to do it, then you are going to have to discuss, between you, how this can be resolved.

A competent electrician whether qualified or not, should not of done something you asked if it was dangerous or not in accordance with the wiring regulations. Having the boiler without a Switched FCU or equivalent is not only potential unsafe should a fault develop but may also invalidate warranties and any insurance.

I can tell you that most plumbers will not work on a system unless the isolation is not correct.

Did you mean?

I can tell you that most plumbers will not work on a system unless the isolation is correct.
 
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Maybe he meant to say that most plumbers will not work on a system unless the isolation is not incorrect?
 
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I must admit it's hard some times to work out what is.
1) Required by law.
2) Required by regulations.
3) Required by manufacturer.
Since often manufactures instructions are missing, and many sites want a GasSafe number to read instructions, one can understand electricians not following manufacturers instructions, as they simply have no access to them.
Except as required by Regulation 537.1.4, in a TN-S or TN-C-S system the neutral conductor need not be isolated or switched where it can be regarded as being reliably connected to Earth by a suitably low impedance. For supplies which are provided in accordance with the Electricity Safety, Quality and Continuity Regulations 2002, the supply neutral conductor (PEN or N) is considered to be connected to Earth by a suitably low impedance.
This does mean you need to know the earthing system but regulation wise the isolator/switch may not need to be double pole. See 537.1.2.

The requirement for a 3A fuse may be specified when using non portable equipment, however one would hope if it needs fusing at less than 16A (Europe standard output) then there should be some clear indication that external fusing is required. But this would likely vary between manufacturers and the boiler type and manufacturer has not been given.

The point has been made the fault may have existed before the switch was changed. It would be easy to see if two or three cables enter the back box. If only two then clearly always been wired that way. If three than likely it was separated. So pictures will show this.

I think we have all seen both where electrician is unreasonable and where client is unreasonable. Years ago it was very hard to show which but today minor works and installation certificates both help and hinder the electricians where he has to document what he has done. There must have been a minor works certificate raised for this work what does it say.

Sad to say but normally the Minor Works Certificate shows electrical errors where for example we want to save a client money and we alter non RCD protected circuits.

To my mind lack of Minor Works Certificate equates to likely a non compliant job. When I found no Minor Works Certificate with mother house I also found the RCD failed to operate (As new socket connected to non RCD side of consumer unit.) so if no Minor Works Certificate then demand one as likely he will then have to do the job right and cost him more than doing what you ask.

Also worth getting a copy of boiler installation instructions if that says it needs a 3A fuse then you can clearly go back and say he advised you incorrectly but you need the proof. Same applies for double pole isolation if manufacturer asks for it then must be provided.
 
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Thanks for all the replies.

Yes sorry in the garage when the boiler was put in it has its own fused switch with a 3A fuse in it. I know this because when the boiler stopped working I changed the fuse to see if this is what was causing the problem obviously I found it wasn't.

So yes it is on its own switch and fuse and the circuit looking at my fuse box looks like its a socket one as its with all the socket circuits. And yes I meant that it was a single switch which can go two ways.

As for the picture of it I have attached two for you at different angles to get a better look all round for you.

If I needed to change the socket would a 2 gang 2 way switch work better given the cables are different sizes? So the boiler goes into one and is switched on permanently and the other controls the light?

Many Thanks

James

 
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Can I please ask a question?

Where did you find this electrician, newspaper, web search or where please let me know.

I recon he could ba candidate for this....

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I see three line wires one red two brown I would expect there to be one terminal of switch with red and brown and other with a brown wire but no real way to work out which brown is which. However see no real problem with trial and error. If browns correct than switch will work light and boiler will run all the time. If wrong then boiler will work on switch and light run all the time.

I am assuming red is feed as old colour and browns are to boiler and light.

Working and being correct are not the same. If supplied from 16A MCB which is in turn supplied from RCD or supplied from RBCO then likely OK.

Have you got minor works certificate?
 
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Thank you.

So basically if if I understand you correctly the wiring is correct as it is the only thing I would need to change are the browns or red around and hopefully that would work? Which would then allow the switch to switch the light and the boiler would stay on continually?

So I would need to find out which is the boiler wire and the live from the RCD and put them in the common and then the brown or red going to the light goes into L1 which would then have the boiler having a constant live feed and the switch only operating when switched?

I hope I understand that correctly? If that's correct would this then still be correct? Or would I be best changing the switch for a 2 gang 2 way and having the boiler and light separate anyway?

As for the certificate I haven't seen one but the other half dealt with it when he was leaving so I will have to have a look and see when she finds where she has put it.

James
 
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Ricochet, an independent television company are currently producing a new makeover series for a major broadcaster that helps homeowners who have received shoddy building work or had disastrous DIY experiences get their homes back on track.
What an interesting and novel idea for a TV series.

It will make brilliant viewing, and be both entertaining and informative.

Now that they have come up with it, I'm gobsmacked that nobody has ever thought to do one like it before.
 
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Yeh looks like he's mis-wired the boiler supply, one of the browns needs to be connected to the same terminal as the red. Out of curiosity what rating is the MCB that isolates the supply to the light/boiler?
 
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