SWA cable installation advice.

Discussion in 'Electricians' Talk' started by AJBr, Sep 28, 2022.

  1. AJBr

    AJBr New Member

    I want to run a SWA cable to a detached garage, but I'm unsure where I stand in terms of regulations when it comes to the physical installation of the cable.
    As it stands, I'm slowly replacing the garden path to the detached garage, and the plan is for the cable to be installed via direct burial under the new path as this is the most direct route between the house and garage.

    The question is, can I install the cable now whilst the ground work is in progress, and get the work signed off when the cable is wired up, or will the physical installation of the cable need to be signed off, even if it remains physically disconnected?

    I am considering as an alternative installing conduit so the cable can be installed at a later date. Would the conduit installation need to be signed off as part of the work or can I go ahead and install it without restriction?
  2. arrow

    arrow Active Member

  3. Bazza-spark

    Bazza-spark Screwfix Select

    You need to get your electrician on board now so he can advise and oversee the work. Most wil not sign off work they have not seen and approved.
  4. Coloumb

    Coloumb Screwfix Select

    I presume this is a new circuit? It would be illegal practice for a registered spark to certify and notify work he has not done, as in the way you propose above. You need to either inform BC of this work before you start and pay the fee or find a spark who can notify the work as a 3rd party, again before you start the work.
  5. Coloumb

    Coloumb Screwfix Select

    With a cable in it, the duct would form part of the cabling system and therefore fall under the remit of 7671. If a spark where to install a cable in such the duct this would be classed as illegal practice as the the duct was not installed by the spark.
  6. Bob Rathbone

    Bob Rathbone Screwfix Select

    A dust is a duct and not part of the electrical installation until an electrical cable is installed in it. One could install a duct for comms. or water and later decide to also install an electrical cable. 7671 and any part 'P' regulatory issues would only be applicable when it was decided to install a cable. Sorry Coulomb, you don't have to even be a spark to install a duct, a suitably instructed groundworker would suffice. However, I would suggest that the requirements of a duct for an electrical cable are observed.
    jimbobby and rogerk101 like this.
  7. Coloumb

    Coloumb Screwfix Select

    Can I suggest you re-read my post? Once recovered, How would you suggest the spark would have any idea if the duct conforms or not?
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2022
  8. Ind spark

    Ind spark Screwfix Select

    Let them fit the duct and have a look before it gets filled?

    It's not rocket science.
    rogerk101 likes this.
  9. dray

    dray Active Member

    I guess it depends how far in the future you think the electrical work will be done but surely you could dig the trench and place the duct in with both ends visible, then photograph depth, warning tape and covering etc to compliance standard?

    My experience has been that the sparks never want to dig the trench so I would have thought that although it is a gamble, it is one I would certainly take, particularly if your not ready to get the complete electrical job done at this time.

    Lets be honest, the spark can always refuse the job but most are reasonable people and happy to assist the client aren't they.
  10. Coloumb

    Coloumb Screwfix Select

    Yes but he would have to agree this with the spark first. It would be the same with running in a chase first etc. Anyone can bash out a chase but it has to be in the right place. But it is NOT correct to say "put a duct/chase in the add the cable" later.
  11. jimbobby

    jimbobby Screwfix Select

    So spark gets called to install new CU in detached shed/garage.
    SWA in house and swa in garage. Hidden in between. No cert available.
    Sorry guv, cant touch it.... dont know who has installed in, when, or how deep.
    Rules is rules....lol
    BiancoTheGiraffe likes this.
  12. Ind spark

    Ind spark Screwfix Select

    Totally agree.

    It's simple.
    Dig the trench, lay the duct call the spark let him have a look, fill the trench.
    6 months later cant get the cable down, dig it back up:D just kidding don't forget a draw rope.
  13. Ind spark

    Ind spark Screwfix Select

    You got it, dig up the new patio I would ;)
  14. Coloumb

    Coloumb Screwfix Select

    If that's how the spark found it, ie no prior knowledge then the risk is up to the spark. The customer could say he didn't put it in etc.

    However, if he agreed this with the customer before the customer did the work then it's illegal practice. Personally I wouldn't touch it.
  15. rogerk101

    rogerk101 Screwfix Select

    I installed my own 35m of 25mm2 SWA.
    I took loads of photos, and it was buried in the same trench as the water supply that was feeding the same garage-to-grannyflat conversion, which had to be 750mm deep.
    I had photos of the warning tape as well.
    When it came to connecting it to the mains in the house and to the CU in the granny flat, my spark was perfectly happy to connect it, test it, and sign it off. In fact with all the photos he would have been a real ***** if he didn't. He would have lost out on a huge amount of subsequent work from me and the numerous referrals I gave him for friends and family.
    dray likes this.
  16. Coloumb

    Coloumb Screwfix Select

    I think really you have to take a practical viewpoint on this. But ooi did you agree this with him before he connected or after?

    Btw nothing is signed off, certification is issued and notification made, if required. There is no such thing as sign off.
  17. Coloumb

    Coloumb Screwfix Select

    Sorry roger, didn't read this properly. I thought you meant you put in the ducting then the spark added the swa.

    Your way is indeed illegal and your spark is/was bent. Hope one day he gets caught.
  18. Notnowvicar

    Notnowvicar Active Member

  19. Coloumb

    Coloumb Screwfix Select

    It seems you are misrepresenting me here. What would have been more helpful rather than your sarcastic comment (such that I would ask you not to repeat going forward) would have been if you had read what I have posted correctly. I DO NOT dispute that anyone can dig a trench and put in duct/conduit. What IS ILLEGAL would be if the spark then puts in his cable in the duct/conduit without any kind of VISIBILITY of where and how the duct has been installed as the duct/conduit forms part of the cabling system once the cable is in it.
  20. BiancoTheGiraffe

    BiancoTheGiraffe Screwfix Select

    In real life, are sparks REALLY this anal about refusing to work with a cable that someone else has run in?!

    Why is ok for the Building Control appointed spark to sign off work that's been done by an "amateur", but not any other spark?

    As I think someone posted above, why is it ok for a spark to work with circuits that have existed for years (and installed under umpteen different versions of the regs), but not the cable that the OP is talking about?!

    There's a lot of use of the word "illegal" here, but it appears to be being rather misused... Has a case ever gone to court because someone has done electrical work without being registered, or without installing every inch of it themselves?
    rogerk101 likes this.

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