ECA highlights key 18th Edition changes

The 18th Edition of the Wiring Regulations, which were first introduced in July 2018, officially came into full effect on January 1.

ECA tells us that the new publication is essential for all electrotechnical designers and installers, with changes varying from simple rewordings to some complete regulation overhauls.

The regulations – also known as BS 7671 – are not retrospective, and installations designed after December 31, 2018 are to comply with BS 7671:2018.

ECA is recommending that installations are kept up-to-date by carrying out regular maintenance inspections alongside periodic testing of electrical systems, to highlight any potential failings and areas of improvement.

Some of the key changes to be aware of in the 18th Edition include:

  • The requirements on SPD (surge protection device) consideration and usage have been revised
  • There are new requirements for AFDDs (arc fault detection devices)
  • Requirements for cabling support and fixings have changed
  • More emphasis has been placed on protective devices being selected properly and working together in a system
  • There have been some changes applying to work within special locations
  • There is a new appendix on energy efficiency

Gary Parker, ECA senior technical engineer, comments, “The way we design, install and use installations is rapidly evolving with new technologies, shifts in end-user behaviour, and lessons learned from previous editions of the book. The 18th Edition ensures that UK technicians stay ahead of the curve and continue to design, install and maintain electrical installations to a world-class standard.”

To highlight the key changes in the 18th Edition, ECA held 15 free member-only #Project18 Roadshows across much of the UK, and members who attended received a free copy of the new Wiring Regulations book. A series of free tools and guidance is also available to members including an SPD calculator, bitesize videos, technical guides, discounted training, and free editable certificates.

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