10 Nov Who can test and tag electrical equipment
The more we rely on our electrical devices, the more we put them under heavy strain. That is why a test and tag are vital in ensuring all your electrical devices are safe from fire hazards. According to the Australian standards set out in AS/NZ 3760:2010, every employer now must keep their workers and clients safe while they are in the business.
Test and Tag are the processes of checking electrical appliances for safety through a series of visual inspections and functional tests. Different appliances can be tested and tagged such as flat iron, toasters, microwave ovens, and many more. Once all items are tested, they will be labeled and logged accordingly.
But who can test and tag electrical equipment? Can you do it yourself? In this article, we will explain to you clearly the qualifications of the test and tag.
Can anybody test and tag?
Testing and tagging need to be carried out by a trained technician as per AS/NZ 3760:2010. The following is the list of qualifications for the test and tag company.
● Certified electrician
● Proficient in using a portable appliance tester
● Have undergone specific training in testing and tagging
● Must understand the dangers of electricity
● Understands the different appliance principles
● Have relevant state legislative requirements
Numerous companies in Australia offer training for testing and tagging. Legally, anyone doesn’t need to be licensed to be able to perform test and tag. However, the best way for you to build up your confidence is to take one test and tag training.
Through the training, you will learn how to operate the test and tag equipment called PAT tester. You will learn the different regulatory requirements such as record keeping and many more. Test and tagging can be dangerous, which is you need to be a certified electrician to perform tests and tag.
Moreover, it is very important to use the right equipment for the test and tag. Some electricians only use a low-cost multimeter and insulation tester which is non-compliant with the requirements of AS/NZ3760:2010. It is mandatory to use equipment with an electronic, magnetic, or membrane-type on/off switch. Some examples of magnetic switches include new toasters. As you’ve noticed modern toasters don’t switch off unless you use electricity on them.
What else is required for a person to be able to test and tag?
● You must be able to visually examine electrical equipment following AS/NZS 3760
● You must know how to identify between double-insulated and non-double-insulated electrical equipment
● The ability to conduct a visual examination of electrical equipment following AS/NZS 3760.
● The ability to distinguish between electrical equipment that is double insulated and equipment that is protectively earthed and identify the correct test of the device.
● The ability to carry out the earthing continuity tests on electrical equipment following Appendix A of AS/NZS 3760, while flexing the flexible cable.
● The ability to carry out the insulation resistance tests on electrical equipment following AS/NZS 3760.
● The ability to carry out tests on residual current devices (safety switches) following AS/NZS 3760.
● Knowledge of the proper use of the relevant testing instruments and interpreting results for compliance with AS/NZS 3760.
● An understanding of how the ES Regulation applies to electrical equipment and installations at the workplace.
Is all business in Australia required to test and tag?
As a responsible business owner, you should provide a safe workplace for your employees. Businesses in mining, demolition, and construction are mandated to test and tag equipment because they involve a hostile operating environment. A portable electrical appliance is easily damaged and may cause electrocution in the workplace.
It is still highly recommended for other industries to test and tag but not compulsory. If you want to be a responsible business owner, you must ensure you have a safe workplace by testing and tagging equipment. Testing and tagging equipment are part of due diligence. If an accident happens in the workplace, you can prove that you have exercised due diligence to avoid financial liabilities.
On the bright side, testing and tagging can minimize the risk of an electrical accident in the workplace. Knowing which items are no longer electrically safe provides you with better foresight and helps you decide which ones to dispose of.
How often should businesses test and tag?
Portable electrical equipment must best be tested and tagged on average every 6 to 12 months depending on the nature of the environment. A workplace with a hostile operating environment is required to test and tag more frequently.
Construction companies that utilize transportable electrical equipment and construction wiring must test and tag every 6 months
All other electrical construction equipment and construction wiring must be tested every 6 months
Manufacturing companies must test and tag double-insulated equipment every 12 months
Manufacturing equipment that is not double insulated must be tested every 6 months
When looking for a company to test and tag, select a company that can give you a comprehensive report after each service. It is advisable to get a list of assets that details all the appliances. The following is some information that the tag must contain:
● When the test was done
● Who conducted the test and tag
● Status of the equipment
● Next date for testing and tagging
● Type of test conducted
The report will help you document the safety provisions that you have conducted in your workplace. It doesn’t only ensure workplace safety, but it also shows how legally compliant your business is.
Testing and tagging electrical equipment are essential in keeping the workplace. It helps ensure that the equipment is operating safely. Since each piece of equipment will be tagged with information about its status, it is easy for you to track which equipment is safe and which is no longer safe for use.
If you are looking for a trusted test and tag service in Australia, The Local Guys can assist you. With years of experience in test and tag, our team can guarantee the trustworthy service that you deserve.