Wiring for new kitchen

Discussion in 'Electricians' Talk' started by Inchcailloch, Sep 26, 2022.

  1. Inchcailloch

    Inchcailloch New Member

    Hi, we're getting a new kitchen installed and are at the stage of getting quotes. A few fitters have said they would put the sockets for the integrated fridge and dishwasher in the cabinets. This sounds like a fire risk to me, but I'm not an electrician so I don't know if I'm just overthinking. I'd have thought it was better to have a socket in the wall with a power switch above the worktop? They also say they'll get the electrics "signed off" when I ask if they work with qualified electricians for the electrical bits (moving sockets, moving ceiling lights, installing spot lights etc.). When I asked what this meant, there was no clarity. My mum says this is normal--you get a completion certificate.
  2. Zed1001

    Zed1001 Member

    You should get either a minor works certificate, or an installation certificate along with building control notification via the electricians scheme membership (niciec, napit ect).
    As for sockets in cupboards, I see no issues as long as they're securely fixed to an appropriate part of the cabinet. My Niciec assessors have never taken issue with it. Personally I think your overthinking it.
  3. Inchcailloch

    Inchcailloch New Member

    Thanks so much for your reply, much appreciated
  4. Timbo66

    Timbo66 Active Member

    Ask the kitchen fitters for proof of their electrical qualifications.
  5. Inchcailloch

    Inchcailloch New Member

    What qualifications do they need?
  6. Zed1001

    Zed1001 Member

    You can always look them up on the competent persons register.
  7. vrDrew63

    vrDrew63 Active Member

    I'm curious why they would have suggested this.

    I've seen sockets placed in cabinets. And while there might be reasons to do this, there are very good (practical, everyday) reasons not to. Like the fact that having a couple of plugs and associated electrical leads in there seriously diminishes the usefulness of the cabinet itself. One of the reasons you are shelling out good money for new cabinets is to maximise the useful space you have for storage of kitchen items.

    Putting an electrical socket in a brick-and-mortar wall can involve a fair amount of work - like chasing through the masonry, which can be time-consuming, potentially costly and messy. But surely the time to do that is when you are putting in a completely new kitchen.

    Putting in a new kitchen can cost many thousands of pounds. Don't compromise the utility of your new kitchen to save a couple of hundred to have an electrician put the sockets in the right place.
  8. Ind spark

    Ind spark Screwfix Select

    Where is the right place? Right at the back chased into the wall? Seems odd.

    In my own kitchen I put them on the side of the cabinet, they dont get in the way.
  9. Inchcailloch

    Inchcailloch New Member

    Yes, like VRdrew63, I'd feel better with them in the wall and it's a plasterboard wall so I imagine that would be easier than brick or lathe and plaster but I'm not an electrician or tradesperson at all. I think I'll do what Vrdrew suggests and just pay to get that done in the wall but open to having them in cabinet now I know it's a safe option, so thanks to everyone for their input.
  10. Zed1001

    Zed1001 Member

    If you've got an integrated dishwasher, it's unlikely you'll have clearance to get a socket behind it, in cases like this I find putting it in the adjacent cabinet, usually the sink unit, the most sensible option. It's nothing to do with saving money or time, as most likely they'll have already chased out multiple other sockets above worktop height as part of the installation.
    There's always options such as fcu's, grid switches, but these can sometimes look unsightly and in some cases there's simply not room for them.
    Good luck with your project.
    Inchcailloch likes this.
  11. Ind spark

    Ind spark Screwfix Select

    I agree, I hate to see nice tiling with loads of spurs, no need.
    Inchcailloch likes this.
  12. The Happy Builder

    The Happy Builder Screwfix Select

    Generally, there is not enough space for a plug and socket behind an integrated appliance such as a dishwasher, it may be possible to cut the plug off and use a flex outlet plate behind the appliance.

    Putting the plug and socket in an adjacent cabinet is accepted practice.
  13. Inchcailloch

    Inchcailloch New Member

    Yes, I hadn't considered the messy look on the walls so thanks both for raising this
  14. MGW

    MGW Screwfix Select

    Back in the last century kitchen fitters did their own electrics, and often to a rather low standard, one of the reasons why the Part P regulations came in. There have been attempts to get around the Part P regulations which allow the use of pre-assembled electrics.

    But the original regulations which are still valid in Wales has the kitchen as a special location, so you can plug in an extension lead, but if you want to fix it to the wall so it can't lie in a pool of water on the counter, then technically its fixed so needs notifying under the original Part P. I would not expect anyone to do this, or consider a supply from a FCU to be a new circuit. But to me the main reason for fixing sockets to kitchen units is to get around the law needing the items to be notified.

    Some good points have been made over the depth of kitchen units, often not enough with great voids being left for exposed pipes and wires run loose behind or under the units. The kitchen needs to look good as well as being functional so space is required to mount under counter lights etc, without there being a box in the bottom of the cupboard containing transformers etc.

    My under counter lights are powered from a wallmart power supply, and it was hard mounting a socket where it and the power supply are out of sight. How to control lights is also important, either side of cooker we have two different types of counter lights, both replacing the original, one uses a switch under the cupboard, easy to assess even with loads on the counter top, the other the switch is right at the back, however the lights are zigbee, so can use voice control, likely better in a kitchen when one has hands covered in the stuff you are going to cook.

    Same goes for the display, showing how to cook the next gourmet meal, not that I am into that, but the amount of sockets in use in my kitchen, think I would go for dado rail sockets when redone. There must be at least 20 items left plugged in, two water boilers (kettles) to start with, so can boil two cups of coffee in the adverts.

    Milk frothers/heater, coffee makers, there is simply not enough counter space or sockets, so we have an island in middle. But with even 10 sockets for use on the counter, having fused connection units (FCU) or grid switches is not going to make much difference.
  15. drety

    drety Member

    It's not Part P, which is one sentence in the building regs!!
  16. Inchcailloch

    Inchcailloch New Member

    Thanks so much for everyone's help. Not sure what this means though, sorry. What qualifications, if any, should I be asking for and are any a requirement for the job at hand?
  17. MGW

    MGW Screwfix Select

    As long as a scheme member the scheme provider will insure they have the qualifications.
    Inchcailloch likes this.
  18. robertpstubbs

    robertpstubbs Screwfix Select

    To me it seems logical to have the switch and fuse controlling each appliance accessible without having to remove the appliance.

    In the past I have wired them to have a switched FCU above, but can appreciate this looks a bit fussy. From the switched FCU I ran cable down to an unswitched socket behind the appliance and had a smaller fuse in the FCU than in the plug to try and achieve discretion. A flex outlet behind the appliance would be an alternative.

    (I drew the tiles on the wall, then drew above counter switches etc symmetrically in the tile pattern, then chased out for the cabling and back boxes.)

    Some installers put a socket in the adjoining cabinet to make the switch and fuse accessible. It does mean having holes in the cabinet and looks a bit messy.
    Inchcailloch likes this.

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