IET Wiring Regulations - Part 1

By Cameron Steel - IET Wiring Regulations - Part 1

IET elec inst.jpg

After a lengthy consultation process, which gained a great deal of attention and comment in the trade late last year, the 18th Edition (BS7671:2018) will be published in July 2018.   From the 1st January 2019 all new electrical installations in buildings and associated areas will need to follow this latest set of regulations.  Articles about the changes are already appearing in the trade press and the IET has published a list at https://electrical.theiet.org/bs-7671/18th-edition-changes/ to give an overview of the main areas of interest.

The British Standard BS7671 (Requirements for Electrical Installation), commonly known as the IET Wiring Regulations, has been through a number of iterations since the first edition was published in the late 1800s.  The 17th Edition is the current version and this has been through three amendments, the latest of which was published in 2015. 

Technology moves on and so does national and international design philosophy around electrical safety. BS7671 has to be updated to keep pace with these developments to ensure the Wiring Regulations are fit for purpose. 

So, what is new?  Among some of the highlights there is wider use of RCDs for small power and lighting circuits.  There are updates to the way protection against transient over-voltages are provided.  The requirement for fire protected supporting mechanisms for containment, which was previously updated for escape routes, has now been extended throughout the installation.  Part 6, involving testing and inspection, has been fundamentally updated with a new numbering system and some new clauses.  A number of the special locations, defined in part 7, have received updates.  Some of the appendices have been updated. 

There is also a new appendix (17) on energy efficiency based on the basic requirements of BS IEC 60364-8-1.  A new version of that particular document is also due shortly.  There is an IET Designers Guide centred around the previous 2014 version https://electrical-shop.theiet.org/books/guidance-notes/energy-efficiency.cfm 

You can keep up to date with electrical issues via the periodic IET Wiring Matters online publication https://electrical.theiet.org/wiring-matters/

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