With many people setting up business from home it’s not surprising really that wiring electricity into a garden office shed is a frequent request for most local electricians. Though it may seem like a fairly straight forward task, installing electricity can actually be a lot more complicated and technical than you think. It is not quite as simple as running wires from the house to the garden.
As there are a number of regulations that are needed to be followed and several mistakes that novices could make but should be avoided, there are more than a few good reasons not to try this kind of project yourself.
Why You Should Hire A Qualified Electrician For Shed/Outside Office Electrics
If the type of installation you have in mind is anything beyond a single socket or something similarly small, you will probably need to have either a split board or second consumer unit installed so that the power to your shed office can be switched on and off without it affecting your home’s electricity supply. The actual wiring can be quite a big task in itself, unless you are running power to the shed from an existing source. Even if you think you will only being using a lamp or a radio, it is wise to future proof any electrical installation.
In addition if your garden shed office or outbuilding has metal pipes that touch the ground or anything else conductive, DIY attempts at this kind of installation could create a possible hazard that could in turn cause someone give someone a nasty shock. Everything in your outdoor office NEEDS to be properly earthed.
For the above reasons, taking it upon yourself to wire electrical cables and wires into your shed from your home could be very dangerous. Not only could you injure yourself or worse in the process of carrying out the work, but you could create a potentially hazardous situation that may cause pain or worse to another member of your family, visitors or even a family pet.
Warning Signs For Cowboy Electricians
The vast majority of electricians working up and down the country are aiming to do the best job they can and offer experience, skill and know-how to help you get work done that you wouldn’t be able to on your own. However, we all know there are some unscrupulous people out there who will do anything for a quick bit of cash, including not following proper procedure to reach pay day quicker.
You should be very wary when getting quotes from electricians and avoid any that suggest any of the following:
- Botching DIY cables
- Using cables that are too thin and cheap
- Neglecting to do proper bond work in rooms with a water supply
- Running cables along at ground level
- Suspending cables in the air
- Running cables and wires along anything other than a wall – e.g. a fence
- Avoiding important certification or tests to save money or time
Correct Certification For The Work – Part P
The majority of domestic electric installations in the UK fall under Part P of building regulations. To be able to successfully and officially prove you have a compliant and safe electrical system installed in your outdoor office or shed, you need to either:
Notify the local authority for your area who will have to, at cost, come out and inspect the work, or Hire a Part P complaint and fully qualified electrician.
It’s not hard to see that employing an electrician who is Part P compliant is the more affordable and easier option. Additionally, if you ever decide to sell your home, the buyers will want to know that any work done on the property and grounds was carried out following the proper and legal procedures and regulations.
Although the British economy’s recession has encouraged a new breed of DIY electricians who want to, understandably, cut corners and costs where they can; it is important to remember that electricity can kill. Even if you try to do the electric installation yourself and it works out well, there could still be a risk of it causing damage to you or anyone else who uses your shed office. Therefore, for a truly safe and efficient electrical supply to your shed office, it is wise to always rely on the experience and know-how of a professional electrician.