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PAT testing mobile phone chargers

Discussion in 'Electrics UK' started by opps, 12 Feb 2013.

  1. opps

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    Hi all

    My phone battery was flat the other day so i popped into a pub with the intention of charging it whilst I had a pint.

    After paying for the pint I asked if I could plug my charger in. The barmaid told me that i could only use it if it was PAT tested.

    Is it even possible to PAT test double insulated items with no earth?

    I thought that the point of the PAT was to test the safety/integrity of the earth.
     
  2. Johnmelad

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    The law simply requires an employer to ensure that electrical equipment is maintained in order to prevent danger - it does not state that every item has to be tested or how often testing needs to be carried out.

    A visual inspection of your charger would be all that is required. Being double insulated is not a consideration.
     
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  3. opps

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    Thanks John.

    Does the employer's liability extend to items used by the public?

    When you say that being double insulated is not a consideration, do you mean the only form of testing for such an item would be a visual inspection, ie PAT testing is not possible?

    At the risk of being a pedant, the charger has a removable micro usb lead which the charger provides 5v to. Would the visual inspection be of the charger or both the charger and lead? In my case both look fine.

    Frankly I suspect that even if the charger did have a PAT sticker on it she would have found another excuse. I just want the opportunity to retort with confidence/authority if I ever come across another obtuse pub.
     
  4. rjm2k

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    I think it was just an excuse, but tbh why should they allow you to charge stuff up for free?

    The government "clarified" that there is no real need for PAT testing on low risk environments, but red tape and jobsworths still insist on it, however on the other hand if you search the forum you will find recent posts about cheap chargers blowing up and leaving live pins welded to the socket!
     
  5. alan333

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    Isn't PAT testing only for items over one year old? So in theory you could carry proof of your charger's age around with you and be exempt??
     
  6. maltaron

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    My PAT tester asks me if I want Class 1 or 2 testing. You still need to test insulation and leakage even on class 2.
     
  7. opps

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    at £4.20 a pint the pub is more than able to absorb the negligable cost of someone charging their phone. Pubs don't need to provide music, football, outdoor heating, WiFi etc but most do because they want our custom. Goodwill is another reason. However had they told me that their would be a 5 pence surcharge to cover the cost I would have happily paid.
     
  8. ericmark

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    I had a similar thing taking a lap top into college. I down loaded the form from the IET filled it in and handed it in to the lecturer who they did not have a clue what to do.

    Yes items should be inspected and tested where appropriate but with a phone charger that would be a visual check only so you could do the same. Does not require a sticker to show testing you only have to identify the item. This could be phone charger with Name **** written on it.

    I would want to fill in the form and return to Pub and again ask them with the paperwork in ones hand. Would love to see their face.

    The lecturer did point out it was my name on the form. I asked did he want a copy of my qualifications at which point he knew well enough to back down.
     
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  9. opps

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    Whilst I am loathed to ever return back to that pub I might well follow your advice. Tnx
     
  10. OwainDIYer

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    Given the widespread availability of fake chargers for phones and other i-gadgets, which have a habit of disintegrating / melting / exploding, it seems to me that chargers are rather higher risk than granny's one-bar electric fire.

    Had the charger disintegrated leaving the exposed live pin in the socket, the pub would have had to turn off the circuit (and we don't know what else is on that circuit - beer pump or pie warmer etc - causing loss of trade) and call a sparky to get the pin out of the socket.

    http://www.bristol.gov.uk/page/our-city-news/2012-12/faulty-exploding-chargers-spark-warning
    http://www.wandsworth.gov.uk/news/article/11603/fire_risk_from_cheap_phone_and_laptop_chargers
    http://www.staffordshirefire.gov.uk/2062.asp
    http://www.staffordshirefire.gov.uk/1699.asp
    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2006/04/19/cst20_explosion/
    http://www.birminghammail.co.uk/news/local-news/exploding-mobile-phone-chargers-seized-157478
     
  11. opps

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  12. EFLImpudence

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    Barmaid has also banned these.

    H & S are looking into this.
     
  13. Spark123

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    No
     
  14. Spark123

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    I'd do a visual, load and possibly even an insulation test for a class 3.
     
  15. ban-all-sheds

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    Or it could be a clause in his building/contents insurance which he would be barking mad to ignore.
     
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