All- About Portable Appliance Testing

Part P training

Visual inspection is a crucial step in the identification of electrical issues. The majority of electrical safety flaws may be examined visually, while certain flaws can only be detected by testing. Portable appliance testing is the in-service Inspection and testing of electrical equipment. PAT Inspection is the testing of electrical equipment and appliances to determine their safety for use.

The type of electrical equipment determines if testing is necessary and what kind of testing is required. Moreover, it will be dependent on the results of the risk analysis. Five different sorts of portable electrical devices and appliances exist i.e. 0, 01, 1, 2 & 3. The two most prevalent appliances in the workplace are Class I and Class II appliances.  Class-I appliances depend on the earth for protection as they have basic insulation. Appliances like kettles, refrigerators, microwaves, and toasters are at a higher risk of being earthed. They highly need a full PAT test. Class II equipment is protected by layers of insulation. Computers, power tools, lamps, and photocopiers require insulation tests, a visual Inspection, and user checks. They are safer than Class I so, do not usually require a full PAT test.

Why PAT Testing is Important?

Portable appliance testing genuinely saves lives every single year. We have been using various tools, devices, and instruments regularly. Unluckily, we have no idea about their internal mechanisms.  From the outside things might seem to be okay but we never know when a machine may stop working or explode. Mishaps may happen due to a lack of appliance maintenance. Fault appliances can cause injuries and even fatalities. According to a survey, 25% of the incidents in workplaces happen due to faulty portable appliances.

Maintaining your instruments properly will prevent accidents that might be disastrous for you or anybody else. A thorough examination procedure may help in finding any faults that exist in the equipment. The main advantage of portable appliance testing is that it eliminates the risk of electric shock. Portable appliance testing identifies the hazards like personal exposure to the conductors, high current faults that may cause burn, and Intermittent connections that result in heat and potential ignition.

Various types of tests in Portable Appliance Testing

A full PAT testing includes visual inspection and in-depth equipment check through a PAT testing device. Common PAT tests are discussed here:

1.      Earth continuity tests.

These tests are earth resistance tests for Class I appliances. The test gauges the strength of the connection between an appliance’s casing and the earth pin in a plug.

2.      Insulation resistance tests.

The test gauges the insulation resistance around the equipment’s surroundings. Insulation resistance tests are performed on Class I and Class II equipment.

3.      Lead polarity tests.

Lead polarity tests check is usually performed on cables and detachable leads. These tests determine if the leads were connected properly.

4.      Current leakage tests.

These tests are frequently used in place of insulation testing. They detect and measure the current to check for any leakage from insulated regions.

5.      Function check.

The portable appliance is put through a function check to ensure it is operating correctly. The appliance is connected to the main electric supply to check that the equipment is operating correctly and that the controls are functional.

6.      Flash Testing.

Flash testing helps to measure the leakage current by applying high test voltages to the equipment. This test can be highly damaging, therefore, it is performed on only repaired equipment.

Who can do Portable Appliance Testing?

Portable appliance testing requires highly trained and qualified individuals. If the staff is knowledgeable and well-trained, they can even identify the faults through visual inspections. This makes the whole process easier, especially in low-risk areas. However, a higher degree of expertise and knowledge is required when doing combined inspection and testing. Expert PAT staff has the right testing equipment, knowledge of using the equipment properly, and the ability to analyze and understand the test results. Various Electrician Courses offer Part P training. With these courses, you may learn all there is to know about PAT testing and get a digital certificate right now.

Final Thoughts

The Electricity at Work Regulations 1989 suggests keeping all electrical equipment in excellent working order. One of the more well-known and widespread methods to prevent hazards is Portable Appliance Testing (PAT).

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The 18th Edition Course Description

Anyone involved in the design, development, inspection, and testing of electrical installations & systems should take the three-day short course known as the 18th edition training course. Additionally, it is a “must have” qualification for employers wishing to recruit electricians on a nationwide level. or for those signing up for Part P Schemes. All electrical systems constructed after 2019 will have followed the IET Wiring Requirements BS7671, 18th edition. which, in accordance with the 8th edition standards, was made available in July 2018 for all installations

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