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General FAQs

On most occassions Yes we are happy to provide you with a free estimate or quotation. This may be provided verbally when you call us, or in writing and we may have to visit your premises depending on the type of work required. Depending on the location of your premises and the type of job to be done a charge may apply on some occassions - if this is the case then you will be notified by our job booking team when you contact us.
We receive many calls requesting an estimate for fault finding jobs. We are unable to provide a fixed cost for fault finding work due to the work required to investigate the fault. 

The best way to find out if your electrical installation is safe is to have it inspected and tested by a person who has the competence to do so.

If you live in an older property which hasn’t been tested for a few years it would be prudent having a periodic inspection carried out. Indicators that you may need a rewire could be damaged worn or exposed cables, fuses tripping parts of the circuit not operating ,buzzing or crackling sounds if any of these are the case you should contact a qualified Electrician.

A licensed electrician should be used to install any electrical appliance in your home. Licensed electricians must undergo constant training and will provide the highest standard of services which are safe and reliable.

You can do your own electrical work if you are competent to do so. Simple tasks such as wiring a plug are within the grasp of many people but more complex tasks, such as modifying an electrical installation, may not be.

It is particularly important that anyone who undertakes electrical work is able to satisfy the requirements of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989.

For work on electrical installations below 1000 volts AC, you should be able to work within the guidelines set out in BS7671:2018 'Requirements for electrical installations. IET Wiring Regulations.

A person can demonstrate the capability to perform electrical work if they have successfully completed an assessed training course, with an accredited training organisation, that included the type of work being considered. As part of that course, this person should have demonstrated an ability to understand electrical theory and put this into practice.

A successfully completed electrical apprenticeship, with some post-apprenticeship experience, is a good way of demonstrating the capability for general electrical work. More specialised work, such as maintenance of high-voltage switchgear or control system modification, is almost certainly likely to require additional training and experience

If a person comes into contact with a voltage above about 50 volts AC, they can receive a range of injuries, including those directly resulting from electrical shock (problems with breathing, heart function etc); and indirect effects resulting from loss of control (such as falling from height or coming into contact with moving machinery). The chance of being injured by an electric shock increases where it is damp or where there is a lot of metalwork.

In the first instance, a competent electrical contractor should be able to give advice on electrical safety and should also be able to suitable solutions for a variety of situations. If you can't get satisfactory answers, Contact HSE

It’s unlikely that unless specifically trained, and experienced to do so, a plumber will have insufficient knowledge and experience of electrical installations to carry out the work.

It is a requirement of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, and the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989 that all persons carrying out electrical work must be competent to do so and is required to have adequate education, training and practical skills required in accordance with BS7671:2018 Regulations.

A location containing a bath or shower basin is considered a special location, installing a shower unit would be considered notifiable works, under part P of the Building Regulations.

If an electrical contractor fails to complete the installation for any reason, it will be necessary to appoint a new contractor to complete the works. If some elements of the works have been covered by the building fabric at this stage, the contractor may have to issue an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) to cover this part of the works as it will not be possible to fully inspect the installation.

Certification by a registered third-party installer is acceptable under Part P of the Building Regulations, providing a third-party certifier is appointed.

They are required to inspect and test the work as necessary throughout the installation. This will ensure it has been installed in compliance with Part P of the Building Regulations.

A new requirement in BS 7671:2018 makes recommendations as opposed to requirements for Arc Fault Detection Devices (AFDD).

It is a good idea for the electrical designer to have thorough communication with the client to understand the use of the installation to make an informed decision and decide if the installation of AFDD’s would be beneficial.

Examples of where such devices can be used include:
  • premises with sleeping accommodation
  • locations with a risk of fire due to the nature of processed or stored materials, (e.g. barns woodworking shops, stores of combustible materials)
  • locations with combustible constructional materials, (e.g. wooden buildings)
  • fire propagating structures.
  • locations with endangering of irreplaceable goods.

It’s unlikely that, unless specifically trained and experienced to do so, a gas engineer will have insufficient knowledge of electrical installations to carry out the work.

It is a requirement of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, and the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989 that all persons carrying out electrical work must be competent to do so.

An assessment of the existing installation will be required in accordance with Regulation 132.16, to determine if the existing installation, including the distributor’s equipment and earthing and bonding arrangements, are adequate for the altered circumstances.

Domestic Services

Have you noticed that all or some of your lights have been flickering? In most cases, it can be a faulty light bulb, but in other cases it can mean something more serious—and potentially dangerous.

It’s not uncommon for homeowners to immediately spot an electrical issue. Any good handyman will tell you that they can fix it themselves without a problem. Unfortunately, there is a problem. Handymen are not qualified to handle electrical work. Electricians have to undergo years of extensive training and certification processes to obtain their license.

When you reach to your light switch to turn it off, only to find that it is hot to the touch, you have a problem. This is not a normal phenomenon, and it indicates that there are serious issues hiding behind your walls. If you don’t get help right away, you could end up facing a serious electrical fire

RCD stands for residual current device or is sometimes referred to as a safety switch. Its job is to monitor electrical currents and disconnect the power if a leak is detected. This may be caused if an appliance, wire or switch has a fault.

All circuits within a domestic dwelling must be supplied via an RCD. RCD should be incorporated into the consumer unit of your installation. This means that all circuits fed from that RCD are protected by it. An RCD that is incorporated into an ordinary mains socket, or plugged into it, will protect anything attached to that socket, but it is possible that equipment may be plugged into another, unprotected socket.

RCDs should be regularly tested by pressing the 'test' button and making sure the RCD trips. Faulty or inoperative RCDs should be removed from use.

Operating the RCD test button provides assurance that it is operating correctly. If RCDs are regularly tested by operating the test button, problems can be detected.

A good way of remembering to test your RCD, do it when you change the clocks, that way it will be done twice a year.

Most circuits within a domestic installation now require RCD protection.  BS 7671:2018 requires that all luminaires within domestic premises, are to have additional protection by a 30 mA RCD when installed in an AC final circuit.  It means that electrical installers have to provide RCD protection for all new lighting circuits, and for existing circuits which are significantly altered in domestic premises.

(LEDs) light-emitting diodes. Even though these lamps can initially cost more bulbs, they use less energy and last longer so will save you money in the long-term.

(CFLs) compact fluorescent lamps, place second to LEDs

BS 7671:2018 states, for consumer units and similar switchgear assemblies in domestic premises, to be manufactured from non-combustible materials or be enclosed in a cabinet constructed from non-combustible materials.

BS 7671:2018 states that protection against transient overvoltage’s shall be provided within single dwellings unless the value of the installation and equipment therein does not justify such protection.

Surge Protective Devices (SPDs) are relatively inexpensive when compared to the cost of an electrical installation and expensive electronic equipment such as PCs and TVs, it is difficult not to justify the installation of SPDs. 

Lightning strikes are the most common source of extreme transient overvoltage’s, where total outage of an unprotected system can occur, with significant damage to equipment and cable insulation through flashover, potentially resulting in loss of life or injury due to fire or electric shock.

Switching transients may also occur, for example, due to interruption of short circuit currents, such as a fuse blowing. Whilst this may be of a lower magnitude than a lightning strike, it is likely to happen more frequently.

Commercial Services

Electricity will always find the easiest path to earth. Any faults or weaknesses within your electrical installation or portable appliances can go undetected. In the event of another fault developing, this could lead to serious risk of fire, electrocution or death.

Fixed wiring testing will accurately identify faults, their locations and usually the recommended solution.

Electrical installations should be tested often enough to make sure there has been little deterioration. Any part of an installation that has become defective between tests should be de-energised until the fault can be fixed.

A periodic inspection should be carried out every 10 years in owner occupied properties, and every 5 years in both tenanted properties and businesses. You should have your electrical installation inspected and tested by a person who has the competence to do so.

A short power outage can be expected on each circuit within the system but because most of the testing is carried out whilst the system is still live, these outages can be planned around your daily activities.

You are responsible to make sure that you and your staff comply with Health & Safety legislation. However, it is usually dependent on the terms of your lease as to whether you or your landlord pays for testing to be carried out on the electrical installation.

Inspection & Testing

A periodic inspection is an inspection and associated testing which checks if an electrical installation is in a satisfactory condition for continued service. Once carried out, an Electrical Installation Condition report (EIC) is issued detailing any observed damage, deterioration, defects, dangerous conditions and any non-compliances with the current safety standards.

Electrical inspection and testing should only be carried out by electrically competent, qualified electricians. All of our testing engineers at Smart Electricians are trained to City & Guilds 2395 Inspection and Testing level.

The average estimated time to undertake an EICR is approximately 4 hours depending on the size of your property and the number of circuits.

EICR’s are for any buildings or premises which have electrical Installations. They are used by business owners, homeowners, landlords and authorities which manage a variety of public buildings, such as schools, churches and leisure centres etc. More often than not an EICR is requested as documented proof that the on-site electrics are safe.

PAT or Portable Appliance Testing is testing of any hand held electrical appliances that can be moved and connected to an electric supply via a plug and socket (e.g. computers, printers, kettles etc). Once our engineers have carried out a PAT test, you will be given a certificate for confirmation.

Any electrical equipment that has the potential to cause injury must be maintained in a safe condition. If you are a business owner, landlord, equipment user, or manager of a premises it is recommended that you should have PAT testing.

It is best practice for all portable appliances to be PAT tested annually (it is common for most insures to make this a requirement). We recommend annual testing as it will help you maintain high standards of electrical safety within your building.

Fault Diagnosis

First, you want to disconnect any devices that may have caused the breaker to tip and overload.

Breakers are mechanical devices so they must be turned completely off before turning them back on and may require several attempts before it works. If this does not work, then chances are you have a much more serious problem so you need to call us at Mafaza Electrical Services.

Typically fuses and circuit breakers should not trip, except in the case of ground fault interrupters, which are very susceptible to both moisture and weather conditions. If this happens to you check to see if a specific appliance that is plugged in is the culprit causing the problem. If you are unable to resolve the issue then call our experts at Mafaza Electricals Services.

When you reach to your light switch to turn it off, only to find that it is hot to the touch, you have a problem. This is not a normal phenomenon, and it indicates that there are serious issues hiding behind your walls. If you don’t get help right away, you could end up facing a serious electrical fire in your home.

Electric Vehicle Charging

If following the Electric Vehicle (EV) charging point installation, the Maximum Demand (MD) of the whole customer connection is less than 13.8 kVA, the ENA must be notified by email within one month of installation at If the MD exceeds 13.8 kVA, the Distribution Network Operator (DNO) must be contacted prior to connection.

The installation height requirements for an Electric Vehicle (EV) socket-outlet have been removed in BS7671:2018.

BS 7671:2018 states the EV socket-outlet must be installed within 0.75 to 1.2 metres from Finished Floor Level (FFL), with the top of displays between 1.2 and 1.4 metres from FFL.

Some smaller, lower capacity electric vehicles have a charger with a standard 13 A plug. This is called Mode 1 or Mode 2 charging. Whilst it is possible to plug this into a standard 13 A socket-outlet, BS 7671:2018+A1:2020 has requirements for a socket-outlet which is intended for Electric Vehicle (EV) to be of a particular type.

BS 7671:2018 requires each AC charging point to incorporate a socket-outlet complying with BS 1363-2, to be marked ‘EV’ on its rear.

BS 1363-2 requires EV marked socket-outlets used for charging electric vehicles to be subjected to additional testing requirements. For example, the socket and switch contacts being tested with an inductive load, as opposed to a resistive load for a normal 13 amp socket-outlet.

The requirements for RCD protection refer to the point itself as opposed to the final circuit supplying the equipment. However, there may be other requirements for the final circuit to be RCD protected such as for fault protection, if it were connected to a TT earthing arrangement. If this is the case, it is important to select the correct Type of RCD and to ensure selectivity upstream from the charging equipment.

BS 7671:2018 requires the charging point to be RCD protected by its own RCD of at least a Type A, having a residual operating current not exceeding 30 mA. It is likely that the RCD will be installed within the charging equipment, but this must be verified with the supplier of the charging equipment. 

Fire Detection & Alarm

A properly maintained fire alarm will last about 10 – 12 years. Once your alarms start getting older than that, you should have them replaced – even if they’re working fine. Older fire alarms tend to run into more problems than newer ones, and you may not know if yours has a problem until it’s too late.

There are two main types of smoke detectors: ionization and photoelectric.

  1. Ionization detectors are more sensitive to smoke from fast clean burning fires.
  2. Photoelectric detectors have fast response to slow burning or smouldering fires.

Heat detectors for environments where the ambient conditions have high levels of dust or fumes. They operate on rate of rise or fixed heat.

The beep is there to alert you of a condition.

  • The batteries need to be replaced
  • The device needs to be cleaned
  • There is an error occurring within your device

If you are experiencing abnormalities or are concerned about the functionality of your smoke alarm, get in touch with us today. We can inspect your device and offer advice.

Smoke detectors should be fitted where they give the best early warning for the occupants. In a typical dwelling they must be positioned in exit routs, areas leading to exit routs and areas where the likelihood of a cause of fire is

Current BS 5839-6 Code of Practice states that all fire alarms in the dwelling should be interlinked. This is because you can be alerted of smoke or fires much earlier than if they were not linked. For example, a heat alarm can go off in the kitchen and trigger the smoke alarm upstairs in the bedroom to go off as well.

An interlinked fire alarm system installed in the dwelling must be supplied from the dwelling’s main electricity supply. Interlinked or radio linked alarms should all still have a battery back up, which can supply up to 72 hours power in the event of any power cuts.

Multi sensor alarms are able to detect smoke and heat from a fire.

Heat alarms can be installed in kitchens prone to false alarms and also into roof spaces. Keep in mind these are fitted in addition to smoke detectors and not an alternative.

Door Entry Systems

Each type of entry/access system has advantages and drawbacks, and should be considered carefully. Our team can help you come to the right decision regarding the antry/access system which is right for your needs

Your business needs access control if you have employees, suppliers or other visitors and you want to control the entrant’s access a certain location, room, area or site, or limit that access to certain times or days.

Preventing unauthorized access to a site helps protect your people, property and assets from damage or theft. Additionally, it may also act as a safety measure, preventing people from going near a potentially dangerous area or equipment. 

There are a number of companies throughout the UK and beyond which have the facilities to offer printing
services. Should you need a recommendation, let us know. We will be pleased to help.

The sensor is a device designed to be fitted to windows and doors to detect the breaking or forcing open of the door/window. Contacts are fitted to doors and windows to detect a physical opening regardless of the force used. It will not necessarily indicate that the door/window is securely closed. It is the responsibility of the operator to ensure that all doors and windows covered by the alarm are closed before arming the system.

CCTV Systems

CCTV systems have been shown to be an effective deterrent to any potential criminal activity and in the event a crime is committed you will have recorded evidence that can be used in a police investigation. CCTV systems can also be used to keep an eye on elderly family members or young children to ensure their safety, household pets or your valued possessions.

The cost of a CCTV service will vary depending on the size of your system and the integrated equipment. Service on a small residential system with only a few cameras will be much cheaper than a major commercial system with dozens of cameras integrated with other security systems.

CCTV cameras use the analogue method to record images on the tapes. So it is required to frequently change the videotapes and the resolution of the recorded images is of very bad quality. On the contrary, a DVR (Digital Video Recorder) processes video images as digital method therefore enables recording for a long time without replacement of videotapes and provides the clear images in high resolution without degradation of image qualities even though the video footage played several times.

In addition, DVR has the real time image transmission and remote control function on Internet. 

IP CCTV cameras are similar to analogue CCTV cameras in features and functions but offer far superior picture quality. They do not transmit their images and sounds as analogue signals but as data. They also offer remote configuration of their settings, and on some models even the image sensor of the camera can be configured as required. IP CCTV cameras incorporate built in web servers which allow for live monitoring, recording and configuration across a computer network or the internet.

Via a PC, tablet or smart phone with a free easy to use app. You will only require an internet connection to access remote viewing.

Yes, our installations are designed to be modular allowing for maximum flexibility to add or remove cameras and even upgrade storage capacity if required.

Fire alarms should be fitted where they give the best early warning for the occupants. In a single story house this may be in a hallway just outside bedrooms. 

How often you need CCTV service for repair will depend on the location of your cameras. If you use only indoor cameras placed in secure spots, they might not need as much attention as outdoor cameras in a public place.

Megapixels identify the camera capture quality. The higher the number the more detail is preserved giving you the ability to zoom in on recorded footage with less image quality loss. See below for easy reference:

    1. 2MP = 1080P HD
    2. 4MP = 2 x 1080P HD resolution
    3. 8MP = 4K UHD

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