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New home,bad external wiring,need some advice please!

Discussion in 'Electrics UK' started by Thesmallholder11, 27 Aug 2011.

  1. Thesmallholder11


    27 Aug 2011
    Thanks Received:
    United Kingdom

    Ok,I have moved into a lovely cottage a year ago -terraced with a one acre smallholding to the rear. My problem is that I did not realise,but the shed at the bottom of the garden some 30ft away which has a double plug socket and a light switch is run by 2.5mm twin and earth which I have just found is supplied from a normal 13amp plug going through the wall and across the garden.Ok,perhaps I have been having a blonde year! But I always thought it was a washing line!!!

    In the shed,I have my chest freezer and tumble drier and a 150W PIR working off of these sockets. To make matters worse.I have found which appears to be more wires coming out of the bottom of the socket in the shed and this then runs to the next shed-which is in the smallholding some 50ft away and this also runs two sockets,one light switch and another 150W PIR...

    Ok.wait for it,there is yet another extension going from here another 70 feet into what appears to be a pump house-obviously they had a pump rigged up to the pond-this also has a double socket.

    I had wondered why over the last year why my light bulbs in the house keep exploding and fizzing out..is this anything to do with this?

    What I would like to ask you guys is..and I don't wish to get ripped off and is why I am asking you all. Do I need a consumer unit putting in each shed? and if so,What precisely do I need,what cable do I need,as I would like to buy all of the things needed,prior to getting a sparky to come and rectify it all..I am not rockefella and am trying to do the green thing here so I need to look after every penny,However,I am really very worried about the electrics as they just do not seem right to me.

    Thanks ever so much for you input and please be gentle on me,I am not That electrically minded,I keep animals and chickens and so forth,that is my forte!

    Melissa x
  2. Taylortwocities


    28 Jul 2006
    Thanks Received:
    United Kingdom
    The wiring is totally unsuitable for use outside. As this is a lash up I would suspect that there are no safety features provided for the circuits.

    The arrangement needs looking at on site. You cannot assess and advise what materials to buy over an Internet forum.

    I know its not what you want to hear but your personal safety is at risk here. (As well as your animals).

    Get at least three registered electricians to review your installation and provide quotes. Its best to use electricians recommended from friends etc, otherwise you can find local registered sparkies at
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  4. electronicsuk


    7 May 2007
    Thanks Received:
    United Kingdom
    No, very unlikely, but it may be related to other poor electrical work elsewhere in the house, probably carried out by the same idiot who wired the shed.

    No, you don't have to install a CU in the shed(s), but given the loads you describe, it might be nice to have a small board fitted in the first shed.

    Absolutely no point you trying to buy the parts based on advice from an internet forum full of people who haven't even seen the job. Call in an electrician you trust to provide a quote - it might even be wise to have the wiring elsewhere in the house inspected, as it sounds as if there may be other problems lurking thanks to the previous 'tinkering'.

    You can ask your electrician if they're happy for you to provide the parts, but it's more than likely it will be cheaper for them to supply you. I realise you may be worried about mark-up on materials, but anything you gain will soon be replaced by higher labour charges, and perhaps an additional pain-in-the-arse markup for the hassle of having to work with wrong/poor quality materials.
  5. ban-all-sheds


    27 Aug 2003
    Thanks Received:
    United Kingdom

    TSH11 - do the maths:

    The electrician will be buying the materials for less than you would be.

    Let's say that he makes some of his income by marking up materials, and some by charging for his time. If you deny him the former will he:

    a) Put up with earning less?

    b) Increase his labour charges to compensate?

    I think we all know what he will do. So he'll be making the same amount, which to you is on top of what you've paid for the materials.

    Cheaper to pay markup + labour on top of his price for materials.
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