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Consumer Unit Positioning

Postby cherrymetal » Sat Nov 06, 2010 6:37 pm


I'm thinking of replacing my consumer unit. I already have a consumer unit with MCBs but it doesn't have RCD protection, and doesn't have any spare circuits left.

The new split load consumer units are quite a bit bigger than what I have at the moment, and I wanted to know if it will be ok to install it in the existing box I have, basically is there any requirements for minimum free space around the consumer unit, if so I'll obviously have to consider increasing the size of my meter cupboard.

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Postby ericmark » Sat Nov 06, 2010 8:15 pm

The question has to be asked can you fit RCBO's in the existing consumer unit? If so then why change? If not then the new consumer units do tend to be taller to accommodate RCBO's and where as well or instead of RCBO's one uses RCD's to protect groups of MCB's then it also becomes wider. Although there are stacked version where you have two rows of MCB/RCBO's so reducing the width. There are of course may ways to wire a house inducing sub-mains and using a sub-main in a kitchen makes a lot of sense as it removes the need for isolators in many cases. With domestic one needs to use type tested distribution units called consumer units and one is restricted by Part P and it is so easy to fall foul of regulations and with LABC charges hardly worth DIY. So I suggest you ask the scheme registered Electrician you intend to use for advice.
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Postby sparx » Sun Nov 07, 2010 1:58 pm

hi, there are no space requirements but changing a consumer unit is a controlled service under part-p of building regs so not easy to DIY legally.
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