Help - 1st fix electics(12 Posts)
We're building an extension, and the builder has asked us to firm up our requirements for the first fix electrics.
I know I want lots of plug sockets. Should we also install ethernet? Are plug sockets with USB points a must have?
I'm not sure what we want for lighting, but the drawings show spots everywhere - does anyone have advice in lighting options?
I would really appreciate any advice others have on this subject, as I'm a complete novice, and would like to get it as right as I possibly can.
Think about what you want or need room by room and how you are going to use it eg a kitchen plenty of sockets well lit , bedroom sockets either side of bed
Try to think about alternatives to a load of downlights wall lights of ceiling lights , These can be wired for realitively easily and cheaply and bought into use later on as wiring already there
John Cullen website has some good ideas
The usb sockets are more expensive but a nice thing to have maybe one either side of the bed , one in the kitchen and maybe one in the hall or somewhere else communal
Thank-you billysboy. I will try imagining I'm in each room to work out what is needed where.
I'll also have a look at that website.
And thanks for the advice re the spots - I didn't know that they can be added retrospectively, easily.
Do a room by room floor plan. Where furniture will go, tables, chairs etc. Then plan the lighting. It will take a long time.
Start out with a double socket in every corner, half way along every wall, and at 2-metre intervals on longer walls.
In the kitchen or workshop, a double every 600mm is not too many.
A cooker outlet on both sides of the kitchen so you can move stuff around when you feel the whim.
try to avoid cutting holes in the ceilings, it will be a lot of work to replaster them when the fad passes.
Spotlights are for illuminating spots, not rooms.
You can have 5A lighting sockets around the living room for table and standard lights, controlled from switches by the door.
Don't invest a lot in dimmers because technology is moving so fast they will soon be obsolete.
Ask what it would cost to have RCBOs on every circuit. It's worth it.
Have a large CU with room for at least half a dozen more circuits in future. Extra cost is insignificant.
Thank-you for your advice.
The RCBOs sound useful, but doesn't the fusebox do the same thing?
The extra circuits are definitely a good idea. We've had to phase the work, so the kitchen and utility will be done in the future, when we can afford it. I'm sure that those will add a circuit or two.
Pigletjohn - why do you say dimmers will be obsolete soon? We had been planning on a few of them.
people will still be using dimmers, but lighting technology is whizzing along, and it's my opinion that whatever's on the market today will br superceded in a few years.
For example, it's only in the last 12 months or so that LED lightbulbs on the high street have achieved 100 lumens per watt, or thereabouts. At the moment, dimmable ones are less efficient. So I mean don't "invest" in expensive dimmers.
RCBOs are a single device for each circuit that provides bothg overload and earth fault protection. They turn off only the circuit that has a fault on it. Most CUs currently have only one or two RCDs, so a fault to earth will turn off all circuits, or half of them. This is inconvenient when, say, a faulty immersion heater means your freezer goes off, or the lights on the stairs. A fault to earth is most common on a watery appliance, such as a boiler, washing machine, electric shower, outdoor light, or kettle.
Ah - Thank-you for the explanation. I'm going to habe lots to discuss with the electrician
Be specific where you want switches. Do not assume your electrician is sensible........I curse my theomostat everytime I come home......I forgot to specify exactly where I wanted it and its the first thing I see when I walk into my lovely period hall.......
Sadly, I don't have any lovely period features to protect. But you're right, I need to be a little more pro-active on this. Up until now, I've relied on my builder's advice and I can't be sure that the electrician will be as clued up.
I've also been asked to sort plumbing first fix - again any advice?
Just asked dp (who advised he is an electrician not a mind reader) and he said pretty similar to piglet John ref spacing. He would have dimmers in some rooms if you want them, if you like them fab if not they can be swapped to normal switches anyways.
If you think you've put enough sockets, add 2 more - especially around where a tv will be, everything plugs in these days and a double socket in the corner may not be enough.
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