Isolator switch needed between meter and CU — Bulb Community

Isolator switch needed between meter and CU

I need an isolator switch fitted so I can upgrade my rather old CU. Do you know how much Bulb charge for this and how to contact the relavent people to arrange to get it done?

Comments

  • Tala said:

    I need an isolator switch fitted so I can upgrade my rather old CU. Do you know how much Bulb charge for this and how to contact the relavent people to arrange to get it done?

    https://community.bulb.co.uk/discussion/9202/isolator-switch/p1
  • You will need to contact bulb directly, a local electrician won’t be able to do this as it requires your main fuse pulling and re tagging
  • edited March 6
    AdamF3 said:

    a local electrician won’t be able to do this as it requires your main fuse pulling and re tagging

    Correct, but that's nothing to do with the energy supplier.

    It's a job for a local electrician. Said electrician will liaise with the appropriate DNO to have the fuse pulled and replaced+sealed. It's also possible to book the job in via the DNO directly, which may be more convenient and means you don't have two parties having to visit at the same time on the same day, twice.
  • A local electrician isn’t allowed to pull a main fuse, bulb will tell you if it’s something they can do through who they contract work out to or to contact your local DNO
  • edited March 6
    AdamF3 said:

    A local electrician isn’t allowed to pull a main fuse, bulb will tell you if it’s something they can do through who they contract work out to or to contact your local DNO

    Exactly, I explained as such. The local electrician will install the isolator and liaise with the appropriate DNO to have the fuse pulled and replaced+sealed. This is nothing to do with Bulb or any energy supplier. @Tala needs to talk to a local electrician or directly to their DNO, who may offer the service themselves - e.g. I know WPD will install isolators and act as the "local electrician" whilst also handling the cutout. The cost from WPD is £167.33 +VAT for a single phase isolator with a lead time of 3 weeks.
  • Bulb organised the fitting of one for me (in 2017).
  • phproxy said:

    Bulb organised the fitting of one for me (in 2017).

    Fair enough. Seems odd to have a third party handle the organisation though, especially when the work involves the consumer side of the meter for which Bulb hold no responsibility.
  • Allanr said:
    Good thread. It also confirms my statement that it's a job for a local electrician and the DNO. For sure you could pay Bulb for local electrician services but the way the experience in that thread goes is a great example of why I suggest not to bother with this route. The energy supplier would only need to handle the work if you were connecting tails to the meter output. Since all that needs to be done is cut the existing tails and connect an isolator inline, any qualified electrician can do it (with isolation by the DNO).

    There is one caveat that if a new CU is being installed then it's quite possible that the tails from the meter to the consumer unit will need to be upgraded in terms of conductor size. In that case, I agree it will have to be Bulb that handles the work via their contractor.
  • It still wont be a “local electrician”
  • edited March 6
    AdamF3 said:

    It still wont be a “local electrician”

    It'll be someone acting in that capacity. i.e., the required qualifications are that of a domestic electrician. It's not a specialist electrical job and doesn't need to be someone appointed by the supplier or the DNO. Sure it might be a contractor of some sort and not a self-employed electrician. But this is just semantics. It's a job for a qualified domestic electrician. It's no different to a qualified domestic "local electrician" getting the DNO to pull the fuse so that they can replace the consumer unit in circumstances where an isolator isn't fitted.
  • It’s a qualification that 99% of electricians won’t have as it is not part of the nvq3 electrical course. As i’ve said, you won’t be able to call up Tony Cable the local electrician to fit an isolator, you need to call Bulb who will arrange one to be fitted by someone, like G4S or call your local DNO
  • I'll tell you what, should we not wait for Bulb to tell us if they have any involvement in this process?
  • Or you could ring and ask =)
  • Allanr said:

    I'll tell you what, should we not wait for Bulb to tell us if they have any involvement in this process?

    I'm here! Sorry for the delay in jumping into the thread.

    We can send an engineer to install an isolator switch at a cost of £120. We'll arrange for our metering company, Siemens, to do this for you.

    The easiest way to arrange this is to give us a ring on 0300 30 30 635, from Monday to Friday (9:00am to 6:00pm).

    Cheers,
    Eleanor
  • edited March 10
    Alternatively, wait for a smart meter, and they'll fit you one for free along with it.
    Isolator Switch and Smart Meter

    Just to be clear though, an electrician absolutely could fit an isolator to meter tails though, in the same way that they can fit a consumer unit to the end of some meter tails.
    The supply should be de-energised and that's often where electricians are a little naughty and main fuses happen to just fall out.
    Whether your electrician is playing by the rules or not, it will still likely cost more than £120 so you may as well just get Bulb to organise it with Siemens.

    @AdamF3, what specific qualification do you believe would be required to fit an isolator switch to some 16mm/25mm sq cables?
  • Just to be clear, they cannot fit an isolator legally! You would need to fo a course that allows The ‘Insertion & Removal of LV cut out fuses’, this is an additional qualifiaction to the 2357 Level 3 that makes you a fully qualified electrician. You may come across a rogue electrician that would do it, be it on his head, but being a fully qualified electrician for the last 12 years, it’s not something I would do. Leave it to the people who can do it legally!
  • To be clear, they absolutely can.

    The de-energising of the supply at the fuse is something that they cannot do legally, not just because they may not have done the qualification, but also because it's owned by the DNO and they're not allowed to touch it.

    If the DNO de-energises and re-energises the supply or the supply is not live for whatever other reason, a qualified domestic electrician absolutely can fit an isolator.
  • Thank you, you have proved me to be correct, an electrician cannot ‘de-energise’ the supply by pulling the main fuse, therefore cannot remove the meter tails from the meter and fit an isolator.
  • The DNO or a contracted person working for a utilities company are the only people who can leagally cut seals to both the meter and cut out, they will then re-seal everything back up, all beacuse they have the correct qualifications and they will have seals coded that are then recored on a national database.

    If you want to go down the route of say a rewire or new build then the consumer unit and isolator could be fitted before the DNO come to connect up, but as the original post is about an isolator being fitted to an already fitted and powered up c.u, any old electrician cannot fit one.

  • @AdamF3, you're not actally reading the text that's being typed are you.

    You can always get someone else to de-energise the supply.

    Removing the meter tails from the meter is also not necessary to fit an isolator as you're no doubt well aware.

    I know of many cases where a consumer unit has been changed and an electrician has fitted an isolator as part of that work. The DNO has come to de-energise the supply, the electrician has done the work, and the supply has been re-energised.

    It's absolutely possible for this same process to occur without the consumer unit change, but it would unlikely to be cost effective and you'd be better off financially just getting the DNO to fit the isolator if that's the only work being done.

    Your point is valid, but lets try and keep things technically correct here.
  • AdamF3 said:

    Thank you, you have proved me to be correct, an electrician cannot ‘de-energise’ the supply by pulling the main fuse, therefore cannot remove the meter tails from the meter and fit an isolator.

    I've already said this several times on this thread, but I'll say it again for those that have their fingers in their ears going la la la:
    Hooloovoo said:

    Said electrician will liaise with the appropriate DNO to have the fuse pulled and replaced+sealed.

    Quite obviously the meter doesn't have to be touched just to cut into the meter tails and splice in an isolator, as @mowcius has said. So the energy supplier doesn't need to be involved. The energy supplier certainly can do the work, but doesn't necessarily need to do the work unless the meter tails need to be changed, for example to increase the CSA.
    mowcius said:

    I know of many cases where a consumer unit has been changed and an electrician has fitted an isolator as part of that work. The DNO has come to de-energise the supply, the electrician has done the work, and the supply has been re-energised.

    It's absolutely possible for this same process to occur without the consumer unit change, but it would unlikely to be cost effective and you'd be better off financially just getting the DNO to fit the isolator if that's the only work being done.

    Exactly.

    Given that @Tala has said that they require the isolator fitted as part of their consumer unit upgrades, the best course of action is for them to first contact a local electrician who will quote for the work and assess whether the meter tails need to be upgraded. This should be done before potentially paying Bulb £120 to fit the isolator, when quite possibly an electrician can fit the isolator as part of the CU change if the tails are acceptable. If it turns out the meter tails need upgrading, that is the point at which to get Bulb involved. In which case, the job is actually to upgrade the tails and it's a convenient side project to fit the isolator at the same time.
  • It seems more like you don’t like to be proved wrong by someone who works in the industry and has to deal with this situation on a weeky basis.

  • @AdamF3, do you actually ever get any customers with a god complex like that?
  • mowcius said:

    @AdamF3, do you actually ever get any customers with a god complex like that?

    Particularly when he's been shown to be wrong by both of us ...
  • I do 2 rewires a week, so ye plenty if work,Not quite sure how I been proved wrong though
  • AdamF3 said:

    Not quite sure how I been proved wrong though

    That's because ...
    mowcius said:

    @AdamF3, you're not actally reading the text that's being typed are you.

  • I think if ever there were a thread that needs locking for circular discussion which is likely to just get worse over time, this is it.

    I bet @Tala is loving the email notifications for this nonsense.
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