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PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2018 4:53 pm 
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A neighbour has purchased a heater for his garage which states a 4kw rating, this gives a current draw of over 16 amps, surely the domestic consumer units are only rated at 13 amps, when he switches it on the circuit breakers activate, can he send it back and demand a refund as it was sold as patio heater but don't these work off domestic ring mains as well?

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2018 5:39 pm 
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Consumer unit will be rated for whatever is fitted.

Ring mains usually have a 25A or 30A 'fuse'

A single 13A socket is rated for ~3120W, but I've pulled more before, and pulled 25A from a double to a large device (USING BOTH SOCKETS, BUT NEVER EVER DO THIS!)

I don;t think the CU should be tripping, unless there is a fault, or that ring is so close to capacity that 16.6A takes it past it's 'fuse' point.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2018 5:45 pm 
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What sort of plug does it have on it? If its a standard domestic plug top then it should not have been sold in the UK. Domestic plugs are only rated to 13A.

If it has a 3pin commando plug then they are generally rated at 16A/20A but need to be on their own circuit from the consumer unit. This would however be acceptable (just) for a 4kW unit.

Unlikely though this is your neighbour may have a 3 phase supply available?

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2018 5:47 pm 
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f-86sabrejet wrote:
can he send it back and demand a refund as it was sold as patio heater ?


If it was sold as a patio heater, and he bought it as a patio heater, I cant see how your chum can Demand anything

If he is not satisfied with the product perhaps he can negotiate a return and a refund, but I think that would be up to suppliers discretion ?

A consumer unit is the centralised electrical distribution board the houses the individual Circuit Breakers protecting the individual circuits that it supplies, ie Sockets [ normally ring main] lighting, cooker etc

Any electrical device needs to be connected to a circuit that has correctly rated current protection

As you point out the Patio Heater would draw 16 Amps at full output. A 3pin square plug typically used to connect to a socket on the Socket circuit has a limit of 13 Amps [ as set by the fuse in the plug itself], so the Patio Heater needs its own correctly protected circuit

hope this helps


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2018 5:48 pm 
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Going off at a tangent, a colleague asked me if he could run his electric cooker off a 13a plug instead of having it hardwired.
Erm, no

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2018 5:52 pm 
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Gaz38 wrote:
Going off at a tangent, a colleague asked me if he could run his electric cooker off a 13a plug instead of having it hardwired.
Erm, no


Yes if it's a fan oven and gas hob. Ours came with a 13A plug

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2018 6:00 pm 
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Gaz38 wrote:
Going off at a tangent, a colleague asked me if he could run his electric cooker off a 13a plug instead of having it hardwired.
Erm, no


My electric cooker is on a standard 13A plug top as its only rated at 1900W. Most built in ovens are fine for this. If its a freestanding cooker or electric hob then they tend to take a bit more than 13A on full load though and thats when things start to go a bit warm and runny.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2018 6:30 pm 
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I have just installed a new cooker with a gas hob and two electric ovens. It's rated at 32A. It has its own direct feed from the consumer unit. I fitted a 40A circuit breaker because there is a separate 13A socket in the wall mounted cooker switch next to the cooker.

I have a mains pressure "instant" shower. It's rated at 7Kw. It also has its own direct feed via a double pole isolation switch with a pull cord, which is within easy reach of the shower.

A 16A patio heater will need a separate direct supply. The cables in the ring main will be OK, but the 13A socket will overheat. If it was sold in the UK with a 13A socket, it would appear to be a dodgy import. Does it have a CE label?

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2018 7:16 pm 
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sgould wrote:
Does it have a CE label?


This doesn't necessarily mean anything. Plenty of dodgy equipment have a "CE" label, yet have never been near an approved testing facility/process. Just take a look at "Fake Britain" on the BBC.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2018 7:29 pm 
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f-86sabrejet wrote:
A neighbour has purchased a heater for his garage which states a 4kw rating, this gives a current draw of over 16 amps, surely the domestic consumer units are only rated at 13 amps, when he switches it on the circuit breakers activate, can he send it back and demand a refund as it was sold as patio heater but don't these work off domestic ring mains as well?


It's not unusual for a garage to be connected to the nearest available/accessible circuit (bodge job carried out without regard to the IET Wiring Regulations, and Part P of the Building Regulations). The original thought being that the only stuff that will be used will be of low current draw, i.e. Hand Inspection Lamp, Battery Charger, a Drill even? This may well have been fine and essentially safe enough when it was wired.

I'd suggest your neighbour has their house electrics tested (periodic inspection report) by a registered (NICEIC/NAPIT etc.) approved electrician/company. Or a Part P registered (same assessment bodies) electrician, and review the subsequent report and the non conformances are noted and rectified.

As for the heater, if it was sold without a plug, and then one was fitted by the purchaser, they don't have much comeback as it is likely intended to be "hard-wired" to a suitably rated Double Pole switch, on a circuit that is suitably rated to protect the equipment flex from overload.
(FWIW, a 1.5mm flexible cable has a current rating of 16 Amps, so the breaker should be a maximum of 16 Amps rating, and connected by a "Commando" (blue industrial 16A plug) and outlet (socket), or a 20A Double Pole Swtch)

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2018 8:23 pm 
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Shalien wrote:
sgould wrote:
Does it have a CE label?


This doesn't necessarily mean anything. Plenty of dodgy equipment have a "CE" label, yet have never been near an approved testing facility/process. Just take a look at "Fake Britain" on the BBC.


CE is basically self certified based on other tests carried out for other reasons. Pretty sure the Chinese rigidly adhere to the various tests/certification required by the various nations they sell stuff to though.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2018 8:30 pm 
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9000Parts wrote:
Shalien wrote:
sgould wrote:
Does it have a CE label?


This doesn't necessarily mean anything. Plenty of dodgy equipment have a "CE" label, yet have never been near an approved testing facility/process. Just take a look at "Fake Britain" on the BBC.


CE is basically self certified based on other tests carried out for other reasons. Pretty sure the Chinese rigidly adhere to the various tests/certification required by the various nations they sell stuff to though.


I wasn't talking about the general stuff off the shelf everywhere you go. I was talking about the deal which (sometimes) is too good to be true. It isn't unknown for a fake CE label to be applied. It's hardly a difficult typeface to replicate?

Here you go, fill your boots....

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 06, 2018 9:37 pm 
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The fact its self certifying makes it open to abuse and it often is. I know from some places ive worked there is no way their kit deserved a CE mark but it still got one.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:14 am 
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Gaz38 wrote:
Going off at a tangent, a colleague asked me if he could run his electric cooker off a 13a plug instead of having it hardwired.
Erm, no

Essentially - if it’s rated at less than 3kW, yes ... otherwise, no. We have a built-in (single) fan oven with grill, which is connected to a 13A socket. The dedicated (32A) cooker circuit is used for the (separate) hob, which can pull more than 13A - hence why it’s hardwired.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:30 pm 
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sounds wrote:
Gaz38 wrote:
Going off at a tangent, a colleague asked me if he could run his electric cooker off a 13a plug instead of having it hardwired.
Erm, no

Essentially - if it’s rated at less than 3kW, yes ... otherwise, no. We have a built-in (single) fan oven with grill, which is connected to a 13A socket. The dedicated (32A) cooker circuit is used for the (separate) hob, which can pull more than 13A - hence why it’s hardwired.


Exactly our situation in our new kitchen. Induction hob in the kitchen island is hardwired; Neff single fan oven on a 13amp plug socket (oven 2.9kw, rated at 240v).

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2018 11:35 am 
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neighbour is now having a 20A supply installed by a qualified electrician, (although it is for his garage which is fitted out as a gym, so can't imagine why a heater is needed when all he needs to do is some warm up exercises pre-workout :lol: )
thanks for all your replies

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