Choosing the Right Electrician

Introduction

The information below could be applied to any work you may need to hire a contractor for, however my interest is electrical work and as such I have written this to ensure you understand what to look for when having electrical work carried out in your home or work.

It is important to look long and hard when you are choosing an electrician.  If the work is not carried out correctly you may not only have something that doesn’t work you can end up with a dangerous installation.

The following are some qualities to look for in an electrician.

Someone who is Qualified

Some electricians have had little more than a quick six week course as their only qualification and then dive straight into your fuse box!  They thrive on the basis that you don’t understand what they do and, as a result, overcharge for shoddy and often dangerous work.

Look for an electrician with experience and the correct domestic or commercial qualifications – as a minimum these will be equivalent to an NVQ Level 3 in electrical installation, plus IET BS7671:2008 electrical wiring regulations, approval by a Part-P body if domestic (see below) or Construction Skills Certificate Scheme & Joint Industry Board (CSCS / JIB for commercial works).

If you are in doubt – simply ask to see their certificates or portfolio.

Someone who is Registered

It is important to hire an electrician that is registered with one of the regulatory bodies. There are a number in the UK such as the ECA, ELECSA, NICEIC, and NAPIT each keeps a register of their members that you can check if you are in any doubt.

A Regulatory body provides you with the assurance that the company is not a fly by night outfit as they would have had to comply with various requirements before joining. They cannot guarantee that the work will be faultless however they will help if you end up in dispute with your electrician.

Someone with the skills to do the work

This may sound obvious of course you want someone who is skilled, however what a lot of people don’t understand about electrical work is that all electricians follow different disciplines and will be skilled in or specialise in perhaps one.

For example an electrician who works on industrial installations most of the time may not have the required skill to rewire your house or the electrician who rewires your house may not be able to fix your washing machine.  You need to make sure that they know what they are talking about, understand and can apply the regulations relevant to the work you are asking them to do.

You may want to look for recommendations ask people who you know if they know of an electrician who has carried out the same type of work that you need done.

It is important that they know and adhere to the IET and the Building Regulations.  If the work is not carried out in compliance to the regulations it could be dangerous.  Also, you may have a problem if the authorities find out and could have to rip it out and do the work over again.  It could also be a problem if you try to sell the house or business, or have an inspection (building control / letting agents / health & safety / insurance).

Remember, a qualified electrician will give you the following:

  • A safe electrical installation that complies with the latest electrical wiring regulations
  • A safe electrical installation that complies with the latest building regulations
  • A fully verified, inspected & tested electrical installation – complete with signed electrical certificate which validates the electrical installation
  • Submission to Local Area Building Control / Building Inspector (if required)

Someone who is timely in doing the work

You will want someone who is going to turn up to do the work when they say they are going to do it.  You also want to agree how long the work should take and do not want them to tell you that the work is going to take a week and then the work takes much longer than that.

Someone who is honest

You do not want an electrician who tells you that work needs doing just to drum up work and make money (unfortunately it happens). Some unscrupulous tradesmen will use your lack of knowledge to convince you that something is wrong when it is not, and try to baffle you with technical talk and regulations to support what they say.

If you are told that unexpected work is required then thank them for letting you know and have it verified before engaging them to do the work.  Again, getting a recommended electrician can help with this.

You will also want to look at the prices that the electricians charge. An honest Electrician will not be cheap, because they will have costs that your average cowboy doesn’t, like various insurances, public liability, professional indemnity, a decent Van to run, tools to keep, Membership to Trade associations and possibly police checks (this all adds up!). However you still need to get value for your money.

Make sure you get a written quotation and a copy of their Terms & Conditions, you should only ever pay a deposit never more than 50% upfront and then nothing more until the job is complete and you are satisfied.

Overall it is important to find the electrician that is right for you.  Please consider the above attributes when hiring an electrician.

Crannis Technology Services was setup in order to fill a gap in the domestic & light industrial / commercial sector. We want to provide you with a quality service that provides you with exactly what you need from an electrician.

You can depend on us because:

  • WE WILL turn up for our appointments
  • WE WILL provide you with a written quote
  • WE WILL give you honest advice
  • WE WILL treat your premises with respect

Appointing a good qualified Electrician in Swindon costs less than you think – if you are considering any electrical upgrades or modifications from lighting to fuse boxes, feel free to contact us for good friendly honest advice.

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