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Discuss Just had full rewire done, cables very close to surface or coming through skim in the Electrical Forum area at ElectrciansForums.co.uk.

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  1. rich888
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    rich888 EF Member

    Location:
    Bedford
    we just had a full rewire done on a 1920's property. Electrics been completed and signed off with certificate. Making good on wall chase areas done by plasterer hired by electrician. We have just come to decorating and found that in a few areas the cables haven't been chased deep enough and are covered by a very thin skim of plaster, some actually visible through plaster. Has this been a bodge job? shouldn't the cables be capped off with a metal plate or chased to a deeper level?

    download_20161222_124121 — Postimage.org - https://postimg.org/image/66nq4wbr1/
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2016
  2. DPG
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    DPG Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    S Yorkshire
    Capping is not a requirement, but the cables should be buried deep enough to be covered by the plaster. You say you are ready for decorating - that doesn't look ready for decorating to me - Is there not a plaster skim going over that wall? Daz
     
  3. Taylortwocities
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    Taylortwocities Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Oxfordshire
    Sounds like you need more plaster!
     
  4. rich888
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    rich888 EF Member

    Location:
    Bedford
    Thanks for the info. Yeah this part has to be patched and re skimmed as some of the plaster failed along the seam with old plaster
     
  5. Jamchiv01
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    Jamchiv01 Electrical Installer

    Location:
    Swindon, Wiltshire
    Being as the cables are installed vertically above the switch, they are classed as in the zone for cables to run and therefore don't require capping. However that cable should have been chased deeper. While the plasterer was skimming, or bonding he runs the risk of damaging the cable with his trowel.
     
  6. Jamchiv01
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    Jamchiv01 Electrical Installer

    Location:
    Swindon, Wiltshire
    Did the plasterer put a PVA / water coat on the wall before plastering? This helps the new plaster stick to the old.

    Once the PVA / water mix has been applied to the wall and gone tacky to the touch that's when you apply the plaster. Or so I was taught anyway :)
     
  7. tony mc
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    tony mc Electrician's Arms

    A better pic would be good but surely thats not a cable going off to the right is it !

    I can only see one cable and it looks like a triple sw !
     
  8. DPG
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    DPG Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    S Yorkshire
    If they weren't run in prescribed zones then capping would make no difference at all. Daz
     
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  9. rich888
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    rich888 EF Member

    Location:
    Bedford
    well he actually plastered over the wallpaper in a few places so when we have removed the wallpaper its either failed or exposed a seam between them. im going to just re skim over it to take it back to flat again
     
  10. rich888
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    rich888 EF Member

    Location:
    Bedford
    all the cables run vertically out of that switch
     
  11. DPG
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    DPG Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    S Yorkshire
    Hope you're taking something off the bill for the dodgy plasterer then if it was the spark who got him in! Daz
     
  12. rich888
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    rich888 EF Member

    Location:
    Bedford
  13. Murdoch
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    Murdoch Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Woking
    Will plastering over plaster which is on wall paper stay on? Sounds a bodge job to me
     
  14. telectrix
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    telectrix Scouser and Proud of It Trusted Advisor

    Location:
    cheshire/staffordshire
    Business Name:
    Telectrix
    wall paper should have been removed before plastering. should never plaster over paper. a plasterer can have a brain transplant upgrade to a kitchen fitter for £5000. cost recovered on first fitted kitchen ( minus the sparks's charge for repairing drilled cables ).
     
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  15. Jamchiv01
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    Jamchiv01 Electrical Installer

    Location:
    Swindon, Wiltshire
    I know, OP was asking is it needed it. If not in a zone it needs to be ran in earthed conduit complying with BS EN 61386-21.

    I learned my lesson last time I thought metal capping would be sufficient from @Taylortwocities@Taylortwocities
     
  16. telectrix
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    telectrix Scouser and Proud of It Trusted Advisor

    Location:
    cheshire/staffordshire
    Business Name:
    Telectrix
    irrespective of whether or not cables are mechanically protected as you say, they still must be routed in prescribed zones. just a shame that plumbers, kitchen fitters and builders ain't got a clue about the zones.
     
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  17. Vortigern
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    Vortigern Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    England
    Business Name:
    F.H. Electrical
    your cables should be protected by an RCD, capping does little in terms of protection. I prefer to use oval conduit as it allows you to pull out the cable if you need to later on i.e. drilling through it. It looks like the cable was not pinned back when plastering and someone appears to have used an orbital sander on the chase which has probably vibrated loose the plaster/cable. Would suggest carefully working off existing loose plaster and refilling with a good quality filler above the surface of the wall then sand down.
     
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  18. rich888
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    rich888 EF Member

    Location:
    Bedford
    thanks for all the advice! so its in a 'prescribed' zone which seems fine then but I still think the electrician should have taken the cables deeper or pinned them down better. because the problem we have is that when the chase has been filled the plasterer has had to come out further than the original wall surface - which can't be common practice can it? I expect the ideal is to keep the wall level otherwise you get lumps in the wall or have to reskim whole wall?!
     
  19. DPG
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    DPG Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    S Yorkshire
    If the cables are above the level of the rest of the wall then get the sparky to sink them deeper. Do not accept it as it is. Daz
     
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  20. Midwest
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    Midwest Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Oxfordshire
    Not a plastering expert myself, but seen lots of good and bad work. Feathering in a chase in a wall, is never going to be perfect, even with a good decorator following on. If there are more than one chase in a wall, better to get the whole lot skimmed.
    Always use capping in a chase, for the very reason shown here. But if there's less than 5mm of plaster, it won't be long before it falls off, even with lashings of Febond Blue Grit.
     
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  21. rich888
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    rich888 EF Member

    Location:
    Bedford
    lucky if there is 2mm on top of the cables in other areas of the house! I suppose that is depth of a skim but cables should be deeper. going to get onto the sparky and see if he can come and cut them in a bit deeper. Thanks again for all the advice!! very useful!
     
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  22. PEG
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    PEG Trusted Advisor

    Location:
    Manchester
    Hi,it appears that your electrician has done a poor job of ensuring the cables are correctly installed.His plasterer has then come along and equalled his endeavours.
    Unless B&Q do a VDE sheathing and insulating wallpaper in the style and colour required,i would ask to have it done properly.
    Just my view...
     
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  23. sparksburnout
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    sparksburnout Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Notts
    I'm not being funny but have you considered getting another sparks to come and have a look at the rest of the work? That looks terrible to me, no experienced tradesman would leave that behind him, if that's an example of his chasing in what is the other stuff like? Looks like a bloody rough job to me.
     
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  24. rich888
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    rich888 EF Member

    Location:
    Bedford
    Yeah we decided to get a different guy in tomorrow to come check the whole job out! There are a couple of things that don't seem right and I've got to make sure it's all safe and isn't just going to drop off the wall!
     
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  25. DPG
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    DPG Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    S Yorkshire
    Keep us posted. Daz
     
  26. hightower
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    hightower Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Durham
    To take this a little off topic, what made you choose this spark? Good reviews, best price, something else?
     
  27. bf03yvd
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    bf03yvd Regular EF Member

    Location:
    Rubery
    Have they or would they require a conduit ?
     
  28. buzzlightyear
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    buzzlightyear Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    star command
    I sent in a plaster in on a job once , and the customer paid, he told the customer he had finished
    went back to finish second fix , looked like put the plaster on with a butter knife.
     
  29. uksrevivor
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    uksrevivor Trainee Access

    Location:
    South Wales
    Personally I think thats a terrible job. He has cut a chase and not used any capping? I have always been told and taught to use some sort of capping, oval preferred but but plastic flat does the job as well as its put in to protect the cable from plasterers trowel. plastic capping is peanuts and if you have chased the wall I cannot see any reason not to use it. To me that is just bad practice not to use it and from the picture the chase looks wide enough to take the capping.
     
  30. nowaypedro
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    nowaypedro EF Member

    Location:
    West Midlands
    Capping (metal or plastic) only protects cables from the plasterers trowel and is not a form of recognised mechanical protection. As long as the cables are in the correct zone and are RCD protected then they are electrically compliant. Not sure about the reg that mentions workmanship tho.
     
  31. rich888
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    rich888 EF Member

    Location:
    Bedford
    Had another spark in this morning. Had a good look over the work and all seems like an okay job overall, correct cabling, proper labeling etc. But just on this wall and possibly one other he didn't really chase at all and nowhere near deep enough for our liking so we are going to get that changed.
    He was registered and recommended by friends but i think in the end it turned into a bigger job than expected and plasterer took a few shortcuts. In hindsight i would have liked it chased deeper with capping but it's our first place so still learning.
     
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  32. Midwest
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    Midwest Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Oxfordshire
    Its one of those 'Good or Poor Practise' things dependant on standpoint. :rolleyes:
     
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  33. buzzlightyear
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    buzzlightyear Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    star command
    in that case you could chase to the side of the cable and remove the new plaster chase I bit deeper
    one coat plaster on, job done . capping is not going to stop a drill or nails.
    its their to hold the cable in place and clips.
     
  34. LankyWill
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    LankyWill Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Northants
    i was taught you could run cables out of zone if mechanically protected with suitable heavy duty metal plate, how else does everyone protect meter tails and oddly placed gas bonds?
     
  35. buzzlightyear
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    buzzlightyear Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    star command
    it depends where the consumer is situated .the meter tails should not be longer then 2 meters
    from the meter if you have meter tails from meter external to internal then you should box in.
    has for bonding depends how you run it .new build area a nightmare most consumer are put in garages
    and depends on the spec.
     
  36. richy3333
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    richy3333 Trusted Advisor

    Location:
    UK
    What's the Reg for that or is it a Part Peeeee thingy?
     
  37. Murdoch
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    Murdoch Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Woking
    2 metres is not correct imho
     
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  38. Wilko
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    Wilko Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Berkshire
    Business Name:
    Wilko Electrics
    Agree, there is no reg at 2m that I'm aware of, but I'm always happy to learn :)
    Assuming the service fuse is not to be relied upon by the consumer, I read reg 433.2.2 as giving 3m between cable ccc change and protective device.
     
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  39. Leesparkykent
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    Leesparkykent You Rock Gmes Staff Member Trusted Advisor

    Location:
    Kent
  40. hightower
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    hightower Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Durham
    In our new build the tails run about 8m. The run in the wall where it goes up to the ceiling void is protected by metal capping that is bonded.

    As for gas bonds etc, do they need to be in a zone? I know it'll be classed as 'good practice' to do so, but they aren't a live cable so do they strictly need to be installed in a zone?
     
  41. telectrix
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    telectrix Scouser and Proud of It Trusted Advisor

    Location:
    cheshire/staffordshire
    Business Name:
    Telectrix
    As for gas bonds etc, do they need to be in a zone? I know it'll be classed as 'good practice' to do so, but they aren't a live cable so do they strictly need to be installed in a zone?

    debateable. i would say yes, run in zones, basically to protect from damage by drilling etc. this could potentially lose a bond to extraneous services.
     
  42. Leesparkykent
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    Leesparkykent You Rock Gmes Staff Member Trusted Advisor

    Location:
    Kent
    I don't have the byb on me as not at home but iirc the relevant reg (522 something I believe) specifies a bs number that the earthed metallic containment must meet the requirements of as it's expected to be penetrated hence having to meet the requirements of a protective conductor. From my point of view earthed metallic capping is not satisfactory. One other option the reg gives us is that if the cable is burried in a wall at a depth of less than 50mm then RCD protection can be ommited if it has sufficient mechanical protection to stop the penetration of nails screws and the likes of.

    In the absence of a relevant product standard, e.g. British Standard, the designer should obtain suitable evidence from the manufacturer that any product selected for the purpose is suitable to prevent penetration by nails, screws and the like.

    As an example, steel of 3 mm minimum thickness is generally considered to provide sufficient mechanical protection, except where shot-fired nails or similar fixing methods are likely to be used. I did post a video once from clarkson Evans which shows some thick metal capping that he drills, hitting a nail through etc to no avail but can't seem to find it. The key thing is that sufficient mechanical protection doesn't need earthing where as other methods require earthing.....Cables can be run out of zones as long as they have sufficient mechanical protection.
     
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    Last edited: Dec 26, 2016
  43. westward10
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    westward10 In echoed steps I walk across an empty dream. Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Northamptonshire
    Never assume a bonding conductor will not be live even though in normal circumstances it is not.
     
  44. Wilko
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    Wilko Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Berkshire
    Business Name:
    Wilko Electrics
    Hi - yes, it's 522.6.204 that refers to an earthed conduit (per BS EN 61386-21) or trunking (per BS EN 50085-2-1) for cables in walls to avoid RCD. Or use SWA (per BS5467 +).

    There is option to use a mechanical protection that is not to a BS, but we would be responsible to ensure it was at least as good as the protection offered by the others. I think conduit was 1/8" wall thickness which became 3mm in metric land which may be origin of Lee's "steel of 3mm min" recommendation (?) . But not having any conduit to hand (shocking admission) this could be complete rubbish :)
     
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  45. sparksburnout
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    sparksburnout Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Notts
    You did indeed Lee, I nearly got some but it was a bit pricey, in the end I got a local smithy to cut me some lengths of 4mm plate steel, does a good job as well.
     
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