Under unit power connection to dishwasher - Safe?

25 Jan 2007
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United Kingdom

I've got a spare under worktop unit in my kitchen into which I'd like to install a slimline dishwasher. It's in a unit next to the sink, so handy for waste drainage, and it already has a power socket.

I'm just curious about the power socket and the routing of water/waste pipes. I originally intended to run the waste pipe horizontally into the unit and have the waste stack pipe in the same unit as the socket for ease of install. However, now I'm thinking that the waste stack pipe will be too close to the power socket (in case it clogged and overflowed).

Would it a better plan to cut another hole at the top of the unit and install the waste stack into the same unit as the sink - thereby reducing the risk of power and water meeting?

Also, all the power sockets in my kitchen are just normal power sockets, not fused or anything. Well, so I think, I'm a total newb to electrical stuff. The kitchen is pretty old and 'tarted up' by the previous owners so the plumbing, gas and elec are pretty old. (I'm saving up to gut and re-do the whole lot in a year or two).

Is it unsafe to use this socket for a dishwasher? If there was a leak would the main circuit breakers under the stairs trip or would I be running the risk of electrocution?

Should I be getting an electrician in to fit a fused switch or something into the line (or whatever the correct name is) that this socket is on?

Many thanks in advance for the help!

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Your socket should be ok,if you change it to a fused spur you'll have to cut the plug off then your warrenty out the window
Get a self cutting waste and tap into the kitchen waste,put a jubilee clip on the waste hose so it doesn't come off,so no more floods
The dishwasher should be easily isolatable, this means there should be a switch above the worktop controlling this socket.

This may not be simple if the socket is on a ring main, since both cables need diverting to the switch and then one cable from the switch to the socket.

Definitely a good idea to do this especially for a dishwasher - I had a dishwasher go up in smoke before - the cables that go to the door panel can wear away undetected.

If any alterations are made to the circuit, you may need an upgrade to the "fuse box" to give RCD protection (the same as that plug on your drill/extension lead) - can you post a photo of the mains incoming (meter and fusebox and everything between) on the forum and we'll tell you if this will be the case.

So I have finished adding the waste stack pipe and fitted a tap to the cold water supply line. I put it into the under sink unit to keep it away from the dishwasher unit.


This is a better view of the switch. It's just a normal on/off plug socket. There's nothing above the unit such as isolation/fuses etc. It's the same with the other two above unit switches in the kitchen.



And this is the fuse box. It has a trip switch style thing - I'm guessing that's an RCD thing right?


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That button that says "push to test" in the fuse box . . .

Push it.

What happens?

Aside, Some really lazy tiler did your tiling. Never tile around sockets!!!

Could you turn off the mains and open up that socket under the counter and see how many wires there are there.
I dont see why you can't just plug a dishwasher into that socket, providing its a spur from the ring or is on the ring itself.

The current practice is to have counter top isolators, I'm willing to bet my yearly salary that there is a higher number of houses with appliances such as this supplied by a socket behind it, than have counter top isolators.
But theres putting up with sub standard installations, then theres telling someone to do it sub standardly!
As Steve says, If a job is worth doing do it properly. If you are working on the kitchen anyway what price satisfaction on a job well done.And safely.
Aside, Some really lazy tiler did your tiling. Never tile around sockets!!!

i hate seeing this in ! It must be easier and quicker to slaken the socket off and put them behind.

Anyway, stealing the thread a bit (sorry) , but is a tiler allowed to tile behind them or does a electrician need to come and remove them, make safe and then refit after tiler has finished?
As long as he doesnt mess with the actual wiring i dont see why he cant slacken them, apart from that they might not go back on - he might need longer screws.
I agree, yes an abover counter point of isolation would be right, but people are kind of reluctant to start knocking clumps out of walls unduly, if he was going for a full kitchen refit, then yeah fair enough.

If your dishwasher was on fire of whatever it would be just as easy to flip the MCB at the CU?
As long as he doesnt mess with the actual wiring i dont see why he cant slacken them, apart from that they might not go back on - he might need longer screws.

whats a bag of 50 face plate screws cost these days? Couple of quid?

It beats me why the tilers spend double the time going around a socket!
to be honest, if my dishwasher is on fire then I'm not reaching over the top of it to turn it off anyway... ;)

if I recal correctly, aren't the facias of metal plate sockets bigger than regular sockets?

if they are then he could replace the sunken sockets with metal face plates.

of course this then falls under part P of the building regs etc, etc...

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