Welcome to the Home Wiring Guide (UK)

Home improvement can be a minefield, unexpected problems can cause grief and home wiring is one problems than most  people hate. We here at the GUIDE hope that you can with our help and step by step guides will help to guide you through your home wiring projects.

Of the many kinds of home repairs, electrical ones tend to intimidate homeowners the most. Not only does wiring seem confusing, but the specter of electrical shock is scary. What most people don't realize, however, is that doing certain jobs on your home's electrical systems can be easy and safe if you follow basic safety precautions. The key to safety is to always disconnect the power from an electrical system before working on it.

Some electrical systems are safer and easier to work on than others: Most low-voltage, telephone, doorbell, and cable television wires, for example, are relatively harmless and easy to handle compared to standard-voltage lights and sockets.

Lights, sockets, and appliances are all connected to the primary standard-voltage system (230VAC to 240VAC) that is delivered through power lines by your electrical utility and then routed throughout your home's wiring. Before working on any elements of the primary electrical system in your home, you must disconnect the power. Turning off a wall switch does not necessarily turn off the power to its fixture or socket; you must shut off the power at the circuit breaker.

Three wires enter most homes from the power provider: Live (240VAC), Neutral (0VAC) and Earth. Below is the standard colour coding for these, the top line is the old colour coding and the bottom line has the new Colour coding as from March 2006.


In addition, most homes have low-voltage electrical systems, with transformers that convert standard power to a lower, safer voltage (typically from 6 to 12 volts) for doorbells, intercoms, security systems, low-voltage interior and exterior lighting, and the like. Low-voltage electricity is also delivered through telephone lines for ringing phones. Audio and video or cable television signals travel through cables that, under normal circumstances, have no voltage.

Please read the following information from the HSE website regarding the number of deaths per year at work -

Electrical safety at work

Electricity kills and injures people. Around 1000 electrical accidents at work are reported to HSE each year and about 25 people die of their injuries.

Many deaths and injuries arise from:

  • use of poorly maintained electrical equipment;
  • work near overhead power lines;
  • contact with underground power cables during excavation work;
  • mains electricity supplies (230 volt);
  • use of unsuitable electrical equipment in explosive areas such as car paint spraying booths;

Fires started by poor electrical installations and faulty electrical appliances cause many additional deaths and injuries.

Please visit the HSE website using this link http://www.hse.gov.uk/electricity/

The above is of great importance because it could be you - there are no official figures for the amount of injuries caused at home but you can bet that the figure is higher than the at work figures.


D i s c l a i m e r

Whether you're starting a fresh or a competent electrical person, be sure to read and study the following pages, if you have further questions please consult a qualified electrician, it's better safe than sorry -

Don't forget - Electricity KILLS....
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