Hi, hoping someone can advise. I want to put in an electric shower but on a tight budget. I have cabling running direct from mains circuit board to a fuse box and onto an extractor fan in the bathroom already, can I spur off this to the shower to save cable cost? (there is also a spare fuse box right next to the one for the fan might this be an option?) thanks SB
It is the word "I" that must be looked at first. Under the Part P with England and Wales and similar rules north of the boarder any DIY in bathrooms becomes very expensive due to LABC charges and unless the person doing the work is a member of a scheme which allows self certification then DIY is a non starter.
Even when working through the LABC one is still required to submit paperwork showing test results and the meters required to obtain these results cost over £50 to hire and getting on to £700 to buy.
The phrase "Electric Shower" can cover two very different units one is simply a pump and the other using very high power to heat the water. The latter needs a very large supply often around 45 amps and would not use the same size cable as any extractor fan used in a house.
Also all new items in a bathroom must now have RCD protection.
It is unlikely any electric shower can be fitted on the cheap. And since thermostat controllers using existing hot water system as far as I am aware don't have regulations in the way electrics do then in spite of the units being more expensive overall for the DIY man they work out cheaper.
I would expect in most areas one needs to add at least £200 to the bill to DIY in a bathroom to cover LABC charges and equipment hire charges more likely closer to £300 mark. And this is if the LABC will accept your qualifications as being able to do the work. In real terms the LABC inspection and DIY route are aimed at qualified industrial electricians working on their own house and not really the normal DIY man.
I would expect most electricians to be charging around the £25 per hour and a min of 3 hours and since the council charge £100 plus vat to just check the work one should expect an electrician to charge at least what it costs to DIY.
However it all depends on what needs doing. With an easy route it could well be less labour cost than council charge for just testing. There is some competition out there at the moment. But if it is a hard route and the consumer unit also needs changing the costs can of course go sky high. So £1000 would not be out of the question with some premises by time you include parts.
So there is only one way to go and that is get an estimate. I would also get an estimate from a plumber for a hot water system. Mine is direct from gas boiler and at 27Kw it makes the electric ones look like drips under pressure. With electric your max is around 10Kw less than half that which a combi boiler can give.
There is also the power shower where water pressure is low and these use domestic hot water and the shower does not heat water the electric only adds more pressure. These also work well and need less than 5A not the 45A needed with a shower that heats the water.
There are two types of power shower. Some have separate pumps and the shower looks like a water mixer type the other combines the pump with the controls and looks the instant heat type. Power showers can't be used with combi boiler. They need an open vented supply.
There are grants to convert old boilers to modern condensateing and it may be cheaper in some cases to up-grade central heating and then use simple thermostatic mixing taps.
:cry: I have had my 3 bedroomed house rewired whilst looking after my terminaly ill mum ,the job is now completed as such but the electrician has done a dissapearing act and i have no certificate .Whom do i get in to check all works i am at my wits end . Thankyou senni
Wow, made my mind boggle. lol. You certainly know your onions, thanks again. I have a combi boiler but was advised by energy company that an electric shower would be more cost efficient and if the boiler ever died would still have access to hot water. I know I cant have a power shower with this. I have mastered pipe work to an extent, managed to move a radiator and plumb in basin and bath etc but electrics do scare me a bit and know it shouldnt be messed with really. Do you think a thermostatic mixer bar would suit better and simpler for a DIYer? thanks again, really appreciate help.
Yes I do and I am an electrician. If you look in shops like Lidi and Aldi from time to time they do very good deals on the shower mixers and they do work well. I have a B&Q special cost a lot more but since fitted bath is only used as shower tray no one has baths any more.
If you have room better to have it's own tray as the water used is higher than electric trickle showers and some baths can't cope with water and it slowly builds up during the shower. Also shower trays with bigger drains and access to trap from above are better with women's hair which always seems to get trapped mainly as longer than men's hair.
I used a special bath that takes glass partitions to form a shower cubical with the extra power from proper plumbed showers curtains are not really any good too much force in shower head. Do make sure shower head is right size. Main instant heat boilers have a minimum flow rate and if you go under that rate the shower will keep going cold as boiler switches on and off. So shower heads are bigger than with electric trickle showers.
Wonder if I could jump on this thread because I'm planning to do the same. I was going to run the cable myself, a 10mm cable from the consumer unit to the bathroom, and then to call in an electrician to make the connections at each end. Would this be okay?
To sign a installation certificate the person signing must has done the work he is signing for. Although there are certificates that allow three people to sign if these are used then the scheme most electricians are members of can't be used and the work in domestic premises would need inspecting by LABC so becomes expensive. So although you can run the cable that would be an expensive way of doing the job. Cheaper to let electrician do the whole job.
As to no paper work problem an inspection report is often accepted by the LABC to issue a completion certificate but you need to ask your own LABC and the inspector will decide what he requires. If he feels it is not up to standard he could insist it is ripped out. However that is unusual and if he does then there would be a good reason and you would be is danger if not ripped out.
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