So, you’ve taken the most valuable step towards safety in your workplace and employed a company to test and tag your electrical equipment? Well done! The problem is, there are a number of companies conducting electrical appliance inspections that do not meet the standard requirements in New Zealand.
At Jim’s Test & Tag, we are experts in electrical appliance testing. To help you avoid fraudulent inspection companies, we’ve put together this handy guide. Check out the rest of our blog for more helpful information and contact us for inspection services that are 100% compliant with local legislation.
How to Find a Reputable Technician
Do some background research about the test and tag companies you are working with. Look at their website, check out the google reviews and see if they have had any negative feedback. Their website should contain enough technical information about their tests, the standards they work to, and the level of training for their employees.
If you’ve already had some electrical appliance inspections conducted within your business and you’re worried about the standard of the testing, you can take a closer look at your inspection results. A lot of fraudulent companies get away with negligent testing by simply skipping the testing and making up the results in a spread sheet. The easiest way to identify a fake test sheet is to look and see how much detail is available. If your results don’t include the electrical values and measurements – for example, the ohms, mohms, kVA, and mA – you can be quite sure that they have been fabricated.
If you have any questions about trying to audit your reports, please contact us immediately. We can show you one of our example reports and come and check your items to make sure they are functioning correctly.
Here are some real-life examples of some of the negligent work we’ve discovered on the job:
Yes it was still plugged in and being used, what ever happened to this power board the customer would not tell us. But really ???
Would you believe it but this was still plugged in and being used. Fire anyone???
Sometimes the fact that a welder has a 15 amp plug on it can be a problem for the tradie but this person found a quick fix…… SNAP it off. We had to point out to him that its called a protective earth for a reason.
This was the classic case of the tradie saying “What’s wrong with that it still works”. The brown wire and visible copper are active components of the cable, this could easily KILL.
Hmmm is it just my maths but 3 sockets does not equal 2 pins? This was a factory made lead with any proactive earth, there is probably a reason it’s called a “protective earth”.
How a 10amp plug was ever going to power some 3 phase equipment we never will know but it surly would be a fire hazard.
When It was failed they said “it still works’.
Do we really need say more??
Before and after pix. No attempt was ever made in the factory to Earth is appliance. This is why ALL imported equipment needs checking.
This “was” a caravan adaptor but we think its past its service life!!
Where are you going?
First off, you’re not supposed to use travel adaptors in NZ. There’s a clue in the name – it’s a Travel Adaptor.
If it won’t stay plugged by itself, it’s a pretty strong warning sign that something is horribly wrong already.
Because of the poor connections, this is a real fire hazard.
And Yes, that is a cable tie holding the whole thing together. Unbelievable!
Bend and Stretch your Luck
Even with this Travel Adaptor, this user still couldn’t get it to work. What do you do? Why not bend rules about what you can and can’t do with electrical plugs? Now the pins have been ‘adapted’ from their original straight to a special angle so it will fit in.
Exposed to Danger
How many times do you need to cut a lead???
Look closely and you can see bare copper showing through.
A plug or electrical cord should never have exposed wiring. It may cause an electrical shock, fire or electrocution.
This isn’t just dangerous, it’s a killer!!
What on Earth?
We put these two images together because neither of them had a Protective Earth. The earth pin is there to protect you in case of an electrical fault. In the case of these two leads, the electrical current would have carried through the person and they would have possibly died.
The bottom shape that is covered in white should have the third part of the plug. The important part that has the Earth in it.
Could’ve been toast
Just because it has four or six sockets doesn’t mean that you can use it to power the whole office. This power board was so over-loaded that it got so hot it had started to melt.
Only a matter of time and luck before it burnt the whole office down.
A burning question
A cable this damaged should just be thrown straight in the bin. Apparently, it had been burnt in a welding booth, and if you look carefully, you’ll see it’s sitting on a metal box.
What could possibly go wrong?
The scariest thing is, this actual cable was still being used.
Exposed to Danger
What’s the problem?
Some people just don’t see the danger signs. It’s hard for them to even see there’s a real safety issue.
The builder using this electrical cord told me “It Still Works”.
My question to him was “how much longer will you still work once it zaps you?”
A Nut Job
The black ‘Nut’ you can see in this shot is a cable gland. It has an important job. It’s supposed to secure the cable and provide a moisture barrier. It failed on BOTH counts, due to exposed wires and no moisture barrier.
What’s the big deal?
Only that it leads to equipment failure, electric shock or possible death.
Only as good a your equipment
The builder using this thought he was doing the right thing in hav-ing an isolating transformer…. Dead set.
The whole point of safety equipment is that it only works for you when you maintain it.
Those exposed wires don’t really scream the word ‘SAFE’.
The last thing you’d expect in First Aid
This customer thought I was being harsh when I told them they did NOT have a first aid kit. As you can plainly see, it was just an empty green box on the wall.
But it has a First Aid Kit sign!
Just as well none of the staff needed any first aid!
Next time, they might see the point in filling it.
Avoiding Fraudsters – Electrical Appliance Inspections
In this image, you can see that the lead has received a pass even though the lead clearly has reversed connections and has a moulded plug and socket from the factory.
In the following two images, you can see an example of 110 Volt USA style plugs that were fitted to 110 Volt equipment. If the equipment had been plugged into a PAT tester, it would have been destroyed by the 230 Volts being applied. Besides which, they simply will not fit into a Aus/NZ socket either.
These plugs both received a pass from other inspection companies in New Zealand and were rectified by Jim’s Test & Tag technicians.
So, why do people cut corners when they conduct electrical testing? To put it simply, they save time and make more money. If a company just makes up results for a number of items and skips the testing time, they can double the amount of money they make in a day.
Another reason for shoddy results can be inadequate training. Your technician may not have been through an appropriate testing and tagging course, or they may not be up to date with the current safety testing standards.
Choose Jim’s Test & Tag Today for Electrical Appliance Inspections
At Jim’s Test & Tag, we make sure that every one of our technicians has been trained and adheres to the current New Zealand safety standards. We want to make sure your business is completely compliant with local law and as safe as possible for your employees. If you’re worried about fraudulent electrical appliance inspections, you can rest assured that our trustworthy team can take care of your equipment. We are completely transparent with our testing procedures and happy to answer any questions you may have about our process.
Call now on 0800 454 654.