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Single wall socket connected to two Mini Circuit Breakers.

Discussion in 'Electrics UK' started by Daniel Keenan, 18 Aug 2020.

  1. terryplumb

    terryplumb

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    Engage an electrician to do some testing ,and corrective work.
     
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  3. Daniel Keenan

    Daniel Keenan

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    Would a house as young as mine use the old ring method? Wouldnt this be radial? The MCB that feeds the single socket is the MCB marked with green dot that has 3 red Live wires coming out of it.
     
  4. Taylortwocities

    Taylortwocities

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    Ring finals very much in use today. It’s what most electricians install. I’m a bit lost here. There are two breakers with green dots, and I can only see two conductors in the bottom of both.
    can you explain so I can understand please?
     
  5. plugwash

    plugwash

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    I think it is a mistake.

    Such a mistake generally screws up two rings and it seems you only have two rings (upstairs and downstairs).

    Quite possibly.

    The norm in the UK is to wire sockets in rings with a 32A (or 30A on older equipment) MCB and 2.5mm² cable. The ring starts from the breaker loops round all the sockets on the circuit and then returns to the breaker.

    It is also possible to have circuits that do not loop back on themselves (known as "radial" circuits) but on such circuits either a larger cable or a smaller breaker is needed.

    Fixing the cross-connection is fairly simple, disconnect the wires from the breakers, use a multimeter to test end to end continuity to work on which cables belong together and then re-connect to the breakers.

    Could you tell us the current ratings of the breakers (From some searching I belive on your breakers they are embossed on the handles, but your photo is not good enough to reliably read them) and what you belive each breaker actually does?

    There are a couple of things that are ringing alarm bells.

    1. You say whoever did this was not an electrician, so it's very likely that they may not have followed applicable regs and that no testing was done at all during installation.
    2. You say this was installed "over 5 years ago", but the work looks much older, so either your "over 5 years" actually means more like "25-30 years" or the work was done using old materials in a manner that was not to current regs at the time. The standard printed on the front was withdrawn in 1994. Furthermore if this board was installed after 2008 or so (not sure of the exact date) then it likely did not comply with the RCD requirements at the time of installation. Furthermore all the wiring is red/black which was replaced with brown/blue around 2004, that can happen when a new CU is installed on old wiring but the fact that one circuit seems to be unlabled suggests that said circuit was installed after the CU.
     
  6. Taylortwocities

    Taylortwocities

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    I think that it was the LABELLING that was done by the friend.
     
  7. Daniel Keenan

    Daniel Keenan

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    Hi Taylor, thanks for your patience. If you look SUPER carefully at the right one you'll see its actually 3 wires. Follow them back. Its misleading cuz of the camera angle. I've circled in black and attached an edit for easier viewing.
     

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  8. Taylortwocities

    Taylortwocities

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    Ah. Ok. Yes. Now I can see it’s three.

    Not the best photo.
     
  9. Daniel Keenan

    Daniel Keenan

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    To just shut this enquiry down as quickly as possible. The family friend did the labels and dismantled the plug in the kitchen and NOTHING else. That's why the consumer unit is such a dirty mess when I removed it to show you guys. Its likely either never been removed (since the house was built 30 years age) OR a long time ago from when before I lived here (plus 20 years ago) to add the socket thats not wired up like the rest i.e. hooked up directly to the CU.
     
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  11. gman76

    gman76

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    Sooo.... the single socket that you say was installed at a later date is a different single socket to the one you first referred to (the one you use for soldering iron)?
    Could you confirm that you have two ring final circuits (the soldering iron socket is on one of these) & a single socket radial circuit connected to one of the 32A ring final MCBs?
     
  12. Daniel Keenan

    Daniel Keenan

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    To answer the first question, correct. The far socket (i'll call it "far socket" to make this clearer) in the garage is the one I wanted to put a spur on (the one that had a soldiering iron plugged into it) which I thought might have been wired incorrectly. I later realised that ALL the sockets are connected to two MCBs after user Spark asked me to check.

    I cant confirm that I have two ring final circuits. What I can confirm is the wall sockets do not turn off unless BOTH MCBs, marked "upstairs" and "downstairs", wired up like ring final circuits, are shut off. Maybe this is a single ring final circuit with a redundancy single ring final circuit? I really dont know. I can also confirm that the MCB, marked with a green dot furthest to the right, is connected to a single socket via a radial circuit whilst also sharing this MCB with all other sockets in the house that look to be connected via a final ring circuit.

    God help anyone reading this thread and trying to understand this mess i've created :D
     
  13. Taylortwocities

    Taylortwocities

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    You haven’t created any mess. You what should be two ring final circuits, one has a spur from it. That is the socket in the garage (see below on this*).
    Due to a error at some point, the two rings have become connected together, they should be separate. There’s probably a simple reason and a simple solution. an electrician can sort this easily.

    HOWEVER, If the existing socket is a spur from one of the rings, then you cannot just add another socket to it. It needs an FCU to be fitted first.

    I suggest you get an electrician to sort your interconnected ring problem and have them sort the additional socket at the same time.
     
  14. gman76

    gman76

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    TTC - is it acceptable to have a radial single socket connected to a 32A MCB wired in 2.5mm as it appears to have been done?
     
  15. gman76

    gman76

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    I'm interpreting this as follows:
    There are two ring final circuits, upstairs & downstairs. There is a single socket in the garage that is part of the downstairs ring final that the OP wishes to spur another socket from. There is another single socket in the garage that has been added at a later date that has been spurred from the downstairs ring final MCB. This added socket bares no relation to anything other than clarifying what is going on inside the CU.
    The two ring finals have had two legs transposed at the time of installation causing the issue described by the OP.
    My above concern is a 2.5mm cable protected by a 32A MCB (27A CCC)?
    Edit: which (now I've thought about it) is ok isn't it?!
     
  16. aptsys

    aptsys

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    Maybe my brain not working, but how would those tests show an interconnected ring?
     
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  17. 333rocky333

    333rocky333

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    Even if done, Would they not have been done prior to connecting into the Mcbs and could Pass fine, as when installed likely all 7 circuits if tested were loose in the board.
    Even an Rcd test Or a Loop test would not have shown up the issue on a split load board configured as it was then
     
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