In NSW Safety Switches are mandatory in all new buildings and must be added if extensions or alterations are made to an existing building.
In QLD and VIC it is mandatory for all rental properties to have Safety Switches installed and NSW should be following suit. In some States & Territories it is mandatory to have them installed prior to selling or leasing a property.
If any electrical work is done on a premise, and it requires modifying or adding a power or light circuit it must also now be protected with a Safety Switch by law. This can lead to the necessity of upgrading the entire switchboard and earthing system to accommodate the new safety switch. Prior to renovations or extensions it is always best to gain a professional opinion from your Electrician.
When installing a safety switch there are other things to consider:
Legally in Australia Safety Switches must be installed by a Licensed Electrician.
For those who believe they can complete their own D.I.Y. Electrical work, please consider a few things:
A Safety Switch detects any variation between the Active and Neutral Conductors of the circuit it protects.
A standard Safety Switch will disconnect the power within 30 Milliseconds if a variation is detected.
The variation means that the current is now flowing to Earth, hence why the Earthing System must be functioning properly and installed to Australian Standards. A better connected earthing system makes the Safety Switch more effective.
The larger the distance between the appliance and the Safety Switch also increases the time taken by the Safety Switch to disconnect the power, this is why work site power boards have in-built Safety Switches to reduce that distance.
Here are a few examples of scenarios where you should have a Safety Switch installed:
In all of these scenarios if there was no Safety Switch installed the outcome would not be good.
If a Safety Switch is not installed on a circuit then the full rating of the fuse/circuit breaker must be drawn through the fault to trip the circuit and disconnect the power. In most cases this would be between 8 Amps and 20 Amps, at 240 Volts if it is to pass through the body it can cause irregular heart beat, heart attacks, also there would be burns and/or loss of limbs and/or loss of life.
Safety Switches can also greatly reduce the risks of fire in a building, by detecting these variations in the Active and Neutral conductors it will disconnect power from cabling or appliances with faults much more effectively than a standard fuse or circuit breaker.
If you would like more information on Safety Switches AKA RCDs or RCBOs please check out wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Residual-current_device.
If you require a Safety Switch installed please do not hesitate to contact us
If your RCD continues to trip it may be defective or you may have a short. It is a good idea for you to contact a licensed electrician to address the problem for you without delay.
We are fully licensed and we offer:
If you already have Safety Switches in your home but they are not working properly, call our expert electricians at 0403 67337 (040 FOREVER) for immediate electrical repair.