Hi I'm a totally clueless about this subject matter...really looking for some guidance here...
I live in a flat and we have a panel of switches controlling the electric supply to lights, the oven & kitchen, the economy 7 heating etc etc. About once a fortnight one of the switches trips. Pushing it back up turns everything back on again but the fact that it trips so regularly makes me worry that there is some underlying problem. So:
1. Should I be concerned? (Quite often the tripping will coincide with one of the light bulbs going). Might any fault be potentially dangerous? Is it possible that something is draining more electricity than it should?
2. Is this something I can look into myself?
3. I notice that in a similar thread someone recommended getting a 'part p registered electrcian'. Can someone confirm that this is definately the recommended path to follow here?
4. How much should it cost me to get the necessary diagnosis+fix carried out (by a part p registered electrician)? (I live in a 2-bed flat in Harrow).
What is that trips? is it a breaker or your RCD?
It is quite common for light bulbs blow and take that circuit's breaker out especailly the cheap light bulbs.
If power circuits are breaking it could be that you have a lot of equipment loading the circuit at the same time, this could rise to high earth leakage causing RCD to trip.
Does it happen at a particular busy time in the day as far as electrical use. ie cooker on, pc on, tv on, etc...?
It's the RCD. My light bulbs are indeed cheap...so what I'm observing isn't unusual? Generally I don't think the tripping coincides with high load/usage but I have noticed a connection with tripping and bulbs blowing, or there being water around the base of the kettle. Most recently when it tripped, something in our electric shower went and whilst it still works, it's no longer as powerful.
Do you think I could have a problem here that needs investigating, or is it more likely that the tripping is the safety features just doing its job?
RCD's can be tempremental things, but that does not mean we should ignore them, when they operate correctly it is as a safety function.
There's a few things that have been mentioned in your posts that need to be addressed, The shower should be looked if power being lost, it's not working correctly. If that the reason RCD trips can't say for sure. Water around the kettle is that due to a leak or just spillage, if moisture is geting to the terminals within the kettle that would cause problems.
Cheap bulbs do cause trip problems may be worth spending a little more on them.
I hope you can appreciate that it's a little difficult when you can't see or test the circuits to evaluate your problems.
I suggest you call an electrician in to easy your worries.
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