tried a cable locator from Wickes and it never picked up live cable about 1inch under plaster. cable covered in in plastic capping, result put drill through cable. Conclusion locator crap and dangerous if it can't locate shallow cables. Can any electrician out there in UK recommend a reasonable priced locator for diyer. I don't mess with electrics except changing sockets,switches or lighting When able.
No. All domestic "Cable locators" are a waste of money. The only ones that work are the commercial use ones that cost thousands. (And they are big and bulky)
Normally you would expect a cable to run directly up, or directly down from a socket or switch, but that said you can also have them run sideways if there is another socket to the left or right of the socket in question.
I agree with @Mr White you can get cable locators, but they are normally two part systems, one bit injects a signal and other bit looks for that signal.
Officially there are so called safe routes for cables, however I put a hack saw blade through a cable in my house that was not following a safe route.
I had RCD protection and it still put me on the floor where I woke up latter, a RCD trips within 40 mS and is triggered by any imbalance over 30 mA but it does not limit the current to 30 mA, in those 40 mS you could get 100's of amps.
Best option is wear gloves, does not stop cable damage but does protect you, gloves however are not the best bit of PPE, I nearly lost my finger because the gloves were too small and restricted the blood flow after my accident, so do ensure the are correct size.
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