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PAT Testing for Landlords — 20 Comments

  1. If an electric oven in a rented property fails a PATs test but is working fine does that automatically mean it is dangerous and should be replaced?

    • Hi Carol,

      Thank you for your comment. A PAT Test cannot be carried out on an Oven unless it has a 13A plug fitted. A cooker usually runs at 40A. If an appliance in Rented Property has failed the PAT test then is should be removed from the premises and replaced as it is the Landlords duty of care to ensure that all electrical appliances supplied in a rental are safe to use. Best Wishes – Andrew.

  2. I am renovating a house to become a holiday rental. All electrics are being replaced and all equipment is brand new. Do I need to have the equipment pat tested before I start renting out?

    • Hi Carol, I would recommend that you have any new equipment that is supplied by you and placed in the property, PAT testing. As a landlord you may need the provide the relevant certification should any problems arise with the equipment, this would prove that you have been responsible and the equipment was safe at the time of testing.
      Andrew

    • PAT Testing is not law it is as previously stated however “Any landlord who lets residential accommodation which includes flats, apartments, houses, holiday homes, boats and caravans as a business activity is required by law to ensure the electrical appliances they supply as part of the tenancy are safe and has at least the CE marking (which is the manufacturer’s claim that it meets all the requirements of European law). The only way in which this can be done is by carrying out a Portable Appliance test.” Andrew.

  3. What are the recognised inspection intervals for PAT testing different types of household electrical equipment.
    For instance I have seen statements stating:
    Refrigerators, Washing Machine’s only need to be done every 4 years. Where as table lamps which are more portable are more frequent. It would be good if there was some guidelines on the approved interval for household appliances.
    Can you help?
    Ken

    • Hi Ken, Thank you for your query. There is no current legislation that covers PAT testing for domestic use. However, if you are talking from a landlords perspective then you do have a duty of care towards your tenants. PAT testing intervals will depend largely on use. A domestic property is not classed as a high traffic environment and so to err on the side of caution I would suggest an initial test, followed by an annual review where you can then assess the condition of the appliances to decide the future schedule. For Landlords, we recommend annual testing. I hope that answers your query. Best wishes Andrew Mitchell.

  4. Thanks for your reply, that’s what I currently do, a 12 monthly check. Issue I’m concerned about is pulling the washing machine out to do the PAT .

    Kind Regards
    Ken

    • Hi Peter,

      Technically no, new appliances do not need to be immediately PAT Tested. However, they do no stay “new” for long. Depending on the frequency of use and the environment the item is used in, will determine when the item should enter your PAT Testing cycle. For example, rented accommodation and commercial or public premises etc all have a “Duty of Care” to protect those working or living in the premises and so will require a regular PAT Testing schedule of all portable appliances. I hope this answer helps. If you require further advice please feel free to come back to me. Andrew Mitchell.

  5. My rental property has a 30mA RCD fitted at the consumer unit, which protects users of portable appliances plugged into the ring main from electric shock. Why is it neccessary to additionally PAT test appliances?

    • Where a landlord provides an electrical appliance as part of a tenancy it is their responsibility to ensure the appliances are safe at the start of every tenancy, the law also expects the appliance will be maintained in a safe condition that will not cause harm to the tenant. Failure to do so could lead to the landlord being sued for negligence. A testing regime is therefore essential and does provide an extra layer of reassurance as it provides an audit trail should anything go disastrously wrong.
      The RCD only protects the circuits not the appliance, however although not compulsory there is no legal obligation (at the moment) for private landlords to carry out PAT testing on electrical appliances in the property but it is deemed “best practice”. Regards Andrew Mitchell.

      • Many thanks for the reply, the RCD is designed to protect the user from harm and not just the circuit / appliance. A figure of 30mA is chosen to remove power from the circuit because at this level of trip current the user will not be harmed. The integrity of the wiring, including the functionality of the RCD, is checked by a qualified electrician on a regular basis. I do PAT test on a ‘belt and braces’ basis but see it very much as money making overkill when a 30mA RCD is fitted.

  6. Hi, hoping you can help. I’m a landlord and I’m currently struggling to find someone to do my PAT testing. If I were to buy a PAT tester and learn how to use it, can I do the PAT testing myself? Thanks

    • Thanks for your comment Martin. It is a strange time for all. The most probable reason why you are struggling to find someone to do the PAT Testing for you is the huge backlog we all have due to the forced closure of most businesses earlier this year. This has created a bit of a problem within the industry, as businesses closed but now are reopening and need to get the missed safety inspections completed. Try contacting PATTA who will put you in touch with a few local companies that are registered with the organisation. You can indeed buy a tester and perform the tests yourself if you are confident that you are a “competent person” as the regulations dictate. The initial outlay should be somewhere in the region of £500-£600 and I strongly advise that you attend a course, talk to PATTEST Expert to see when these are run. Don’t forget to check casings, fuses, pins, plugs and sockets for damage and wear and tear. I hope our response helps.

  7. Hi, As a Landlord in Scotland I’m obliged to register with the local council as a Landlord, and this is renewed every 5 years per property. This year while renewing my requirements, I identified that PAT testing for domestic use is only required within every 5years, which is the same period of time an EICR needs to be carried out. When an EICR is carried out they do the PAT testing as part of their checks, therefore they do not need to be done separately. Also if you google for electrical regulations and PAT, they do not specify a mandatory period for those checks. You can do PAT testing more often if you wish, for example when new tenants move in. I have agreed with my Agent to have them carried out when the EICR checks are due, and they were happy to go with that.

    • Hi Kenneth, thanks for taking the time to comment. I am not sure if you are asking a question. Although the law states that the checks are carried out at least every 5 years, it is recommended that it be carried out more often- particularly PAT tests that they advise should be annually checked. Enforcement of the regulations is the responsibility of the Private Rented Housing Panel (PRHP). First let me say that Scottish Landlord regulations are slightly different to those in England, however, the whole of the UK has Health and Safety guidance when it comes to landlords and when new tenants start a tenancy. I think your reasoning is sound however, when tenants change landlords are required to do certain safety checks before letting their property to new tenants. As the “Responsible Person” you will need to decide whether you deem that should include PAT Testing portable appliances. I would err on the side of caution and at the least do visual inspections of units, the plugs, casings, leads and checking sockets for burn or wear and tear marks to ensure that previous tenants didn’t cause damage to units prior to new tenants using the equipment. I am sure as a responsible landlord the last thing you would want is a damaged appliance causing a fire just because they weren’t checked over before a new tenant commenced their tenancy. Stay safe Andrew.

  8. Pat testing hairdryer holiday park.how often.and what should holiday park do if item has fault ie burning a guests hair by it glowing red immediately on switching on and sucking their long hair in and burning it…last pat tested feb 2018 .are tgey negligent.

    • To judge whether someone is negligent is not down to us. That would be up for a judge to decide in a court of law. However, for high traffic areas portable appliances should be tested on an annual basis and a visual inspection should be made by the “Responsible Person” on a regular basis as a part of their safety checks. If any appliance glows red when turned on the item should be removed from service as it is reasonable to assume that a hair dryer should not do this. Unfortunately hair dryers will suck long hair in, they need to intake air from one end so that they can expel it the other end and it is a frequent hazard for hair to get sucked in. I am afraid we cannot give you definitive answers as we cannot see the unit and we are not of the legal profession. Perhaps seek advice from a solicitor to answer whether the owners of the hair dryer are negligent. I hope our answer helped.

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