We offer a wide range of electrical inspection, training, and advisory services throughout Otago, and further afield by arrangement.
Electrical work by electrician
Regulations require that electrical installation work considered to be high risk must be checked and signed-off by an Inspector. We provide an independent confirmation that the work done is electrically safe and compliant; and has not adversely affected the safety of the rest of the installation.
As an authorised metering contractor for Trustpower, we also install meters - for both Trustpower and Meridian customers - connected to the OtagoNet network. And we're authorised by Powernet to liven installations as well.
Electrical work by homeowner
The Electricity Act permits homeowners to undertake some types of installation work normally carried out by licensed electrical workers. This work must be inspected, tested, and certified by an Inspector before being connected.
Contact us for guidance before you start. That way we can advise you how to do the work, so that when you've done it, it will comply with the rules and be safe to connect.
Warrant of Electrical Fitness
Connectable installations such as caravans, boats, mobile food trucks, and other relocatable structures which plug into mains power are required to have a current Warrant of Electrical Fitness (WoEF). A WoEF lasts for 4 years, except mobile medical installations (1 year) from date of issue.
Imported caravans and motorhomes also require an additional safety assessment; because having been wired according to foreign rules, they almost never comply with New Zealand's electrical safety requirements.
Either bring it to us, or we can come to you. But if you're planning a trip at peak holiday season, don't leave it until the last minute.
In-service inspection of premises and equipment
Owners and users of electrical installations are required to ensure their installations don't become unsafe. Employers also have obligations under the Health and Safety in Employment Act to ensure that workplaces, including electrical equipment, are safe.
Insurers are increasingly requiring building owners to have the electrical installations in their premises inspected for both electrical safety and risk of electrical fires.
Some types of installation are required to be inspected at regular intervals.
Whatever the reason, we can meet your needs:
- inspection and testing of portable electrical appliances, generators, etc
- inspection of switchboards, wiring, and fixed equipment (visual-only, visual & limited testing, or visual & full testing).
- routine inspection of camping grounds, marinas, fairgrounds, carnivals, and construction / demolition sites
Inspections can be arranged to minimise disruption. In many cases power will not need to be switched off (except for a few seconds during testing of residual current devices).
We provide full written reports of any safety or compliance issues found.
All objects give off infra-red radiation, and a reading of that radiation using an infra-red thermometer lets you know how hot it is without having to touch it - especially important for moving parts or live electrical equipment, as temperature readings can be taken without disrupting operations.
This allows electrical and mechanical faults to be found before they become obvious. Faults can then be programmed for repair instead of leading to a breakdown with loss of production, or a destructive fire.
Infra-red readings can also assist with energy efficiency, by allowing you to find where heat - or cool - is leaking.
Thermal imaging takes this to the next level. Using an infra-red camera, hundreds of temperatures can be measured and recorded in less than a second. An image is built up by associating each temperature (infra-red energy level) with a colour.
With thermal imaging, there's no doubt about whether something was checked, as there's a permanent record. And with dual-image technology, you can't be fobbed off with some unrecognisable screen-shot, as there's a matching visible light image so you can tell what's pictured from a merging of the two simultaneous images . Which also makes it easy for your repair team to tell exactly what needs to be fixed.
A full written report shows everything that's been checked, with a PDF copy for e-mailing to your repairer or insurer. And by applying our specialised electrical experience, we can sort out which "hot spots" are perfectly normal and which ones need your attention.
One fault found early will not only minimise the cost of repair, but can save thousands of dollars in unprogrammed down-time. With regular thermal surveys, you can even detect long-term trends, for example whether a particular item is running hotter than it used to. We check each image, and adjust them so that the same colour represents the same temperature throughout the report. We keep the original, unaltered images on file, so the temperature of any pixel in an old image can be checked at any time, even if it wasn't noted as wanting attention at the time.
Building Act inspection (IQP)
Inspection of "specified systems" by independent qualified person (IQP) as required by the Building Act. Accredited for all South Island territorial local authorities for:
- SS 2 Warning systems (fire or other dangers)
- SS 4 Emergency lighting
- SS 9 Ventilation
- SS 14 Signs and emergency power for these systems
If you're ever told that you need to upgrade a system to meet the latest requirements, they may be just trying to make a sale. Come to us for an independent, unbiased opinion.
As well as inspecting these systems, we can provide a full service; from setting up a building warrant of fitness (BWoF) compliance folder, to advising building owners what records they need to keep and which forms to send in to the Council. The BWoF system generates lots of paperwork, and it all has to be kept for at least two years. If the details get too complicated, we can act on owners' behalf to gather all the required bits of paper from the various IQPs, and file them in the compliance folder; so that all the owner needs to do is sign the final form (and pay the Council's fee)
Buying a house - or any other property - is a big investment. Buyers need to know that it's structurally sound. And you want to be sure it's electrically safe as well.
And if it's an older property, you may find that you can't get insurance without having an electrical inspection done.
Sellers can make their property more attractive by getting the inspection done themselves, and providing a copy to prospective buyers. A small investment which can lead to a higher selling price.
We'll check it all thoroughly, and provide a comprehensive written report. We'll let you know not only anything that's not safe, but anything else that's likely to involve significant costs to upgrade.
Any electrical installation that's been disconnected from supply for over 6 months has to be inspected, and have any safety issues fixed, before power can be put back on. So if you're looking at renting a house, a flat, or commercial premises; and the power's not on; you may need to arrange an inspection.
Finding this out on the day you want to move in isn't much fun, so call us early.
Electrical Safety in the Workplace
Employers also have obligations under the Health and Safety in Employment Act to ensure that workplaces, including electrical equipment, are safe.
Is your workplace electrically safe? If something went wrong, could you show that you've taken "all practicable steps" to eliminate electrical hazards?
- We can check the electrical wiring and fittings, as well as the appliances you use.
- We can advise you how to do some basic checking and testing for yourself.
- We can train your staff to avoid unsafe practices.
- We can set up an electrical safety dossier so that you can prove you've done all you can to avoid an electrical accident.
Whether it's for heating, cooling, lighting, or running machinery; energy costs money. As accredited EcoSmart contractors, we can save you money by identifying ways to save energy.
Saving energy doesn't have to cost a lot, and the pay-back period doesn't have to be measured in years.
Let us show you how a small investment can provide ongoing savings for years to come.
Electricity Regulations and Standards
The rules governing electrical safety are complicated. They keep changing. And they're written in "officialese" which can be difficult to understand.
We'll train your staff so they know what the rules mean, instead of just what they say.
Alec Knewstubb Electrical has been providing independent electrical contracting, inspection, and training services since 1992.
Alec has been working in the electrical industry for over 35 years; with over 20 years as a registered electrical inspector.
Alec is a member of several joint (Australia / NZ) Standards committees, representing the NZ electrical contracting industry and helping ensure the electrical installation Standards are suitable for use by NZ electrical workers.
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Alec Knewstubb Electrical is a member of and / or accredited to the following organisations: