About PAT Testers
Who Needs PAT Testing?
The Electricity at Work Regulations 1989 state "any electrical equipment that has the potential to cause injury is maintained in a safe condition." Thus, it is important for any business owner to ensure compliance with this requirement. The responsibility of safe appliances lies with the person who is the duty holder - this could be a business owner, landlord, equipment user, or manager of a premises.
Any portable appliance in a working area, from a printer to a kettle, should have periodic portable appliance testing.
Another group who need to consider adding PAT Testing to their yearly business practice are landlords. If a person is letting out accommodation in order to make money as a business venture then they fall under the same safety regulations as a standard office building.
Why is PAT Testing important:
Portable Appliance Testers, commonly known as PAT testers are indispensable in the pursuit for electrical safety. PAT Tester are instrumental in evaluating the integrity of appliances by checking for potential faults, defects, or unsafe conditions that may compromise user safety. Ensuring compliance with regulations, and enhancing the overall safety of electrical appliances makes PAT Testers a vital asset for individuals and organisations alike.
Investing in PAT testing is an investment in safety, reliability, and peace of mind!
When performing PAT Testing we are using a process of visual inspection, electrical and functional tests to determine that an item of electrical equipment is safe for continued use, by proving the appliance under test has good earth and correct insulation, and that no maintenance is required.
Each item must be treated as unsafe until we have confirmed its safety. So we start with isolating and visually inspecting the appliance and only progress to electrical testing and finally functional testing when the proceeding inspections have 'PASSED'.
The significance of PAT testing cannot be overstated, especially in environments where electrical appliances are prevalent, such as offices, factories, schools, and households. Regular PAT testing helps identify faulty appliances, damaged cables, or other potential hazards that might otherwise go unnoticed. By addressing these issues proactively, PAT testing contributes to reducing the risk of electrical accidents, fires, and injuries.
Why do companies/landlords PAT test?
- Requirement to maintain an appliance in a safe condition and assess the risks
- Reduce the risk of fire
- Identify counterfeit equipment and product recalls
- New good inspection
- Testing after repair
- Insurance company requirement
- To combat compensation claims
What is the difference between a downloading PAT Tester and a Manual PAT Tester?
Downloadable PAT Testers are typically used for larger volume testing. All of the assets and test results are entered into the tester and stored in the machine ready to be downloaded to software. No manual paperwork is required. By using software you can automate all asset information, test results, history, job scheduling and reporting.
Downloading PAT Testers can be used with barcoding systems and label printing options. Extra features like a built-in camera can be found on the Apollo 600+ PAT Tester (this extra feature offers complete traceability of visual inspections and failed items)
Manual PAT Testers are mainly used by organisations that have low volume testing. They are simple to use, with 1 push button operation. Records are recorded manually into either a log book of some sort or manual entry software.
The main benefits are cost effective, quick and easy to use, but if you are doing alot of PAT Testing record keeping can be a burden.
Key Features of PAT Testers:
Visual Inspection: PAT testers typically begin with a visual inspection, examining the appliance for visible defects or damage. This includes checking the power cord, plug, and casing for any signs of wear, tear, or other issues.
Earth Continuity Testing: This test ensures that the metal parts of an appliance are adequately connected to the earth. A weak or non-existent earth connection can result in electric shock hazards.
Insulation Resistance Testing: This test measures the resistance of the insulation between the live parts and the earth. A low insulation resistance indicates potential leakage current, posing a risk of electric shock.
Earth Leakage Testing: This test identifies any current leaking from the live parts to the earth, which can be indicative of a fault within the appliance.
Functional Checks: Some PAT testers also perform functional checks to assess the proper operation of an appliance. This may involve testing switches, indicators, and other essential functions.
Benefits of PAT Testing:
Enhanced Safety: The primary goal of PAT testing is to enhance safety by identifying and rectifying potential electrical hazards. Regular testing ensures that appliances are safe for use, mitigating the risk of electrical accidents.
Compliance with Regulations: Many industries and workplaces are subject to regulations that mandate regular PAT testing. Compliance with these regulations is not only a legal requirement but also a testament to an organisation's commitment to safety.
Preventing Disruptions: Identifying and addressing faults through PAT testing helps prevent unexpected breakdowns or malfunctions. This proactive approach minimises disruptions to operations and ensures the smooth functioning of electrical equipment.
Protecting Investments: Electrical appliances represent a significant investment for both individuals and organisations. PAT testing extends the lifespan of appliances by identifying and rectifying issues early, ultimately protecting this investment.
Building Trust: For businesses, adherence to safety standards and regular PAT testing can build trust with customers, employees, and stakeholders. It demonstrates a commitment to providing a safe environment and reliable products or services.
If you have any questions contact our friendly team today - experts are here to advise on the full range of PAT Testers.