PAT Testing - FAQs

What is PAT Testing?

Portable Appliance Testing (PAT) is an important part of a company’s or individual’s responsibility to health and safety. A series of safety tests are performed on your portable appliances to reduce and prevent the risk of fire, shock and injury.

Why do I need to do PAT testing

The Health & Safety at Work Act 1974 puts the duty of care upon both the employer and the employee to ensure the safety of all persons using the work premises. This includes the self employed. With a regular maintenance schedule in place PAT Testing ensures that your electrical equipment is safe and fit for use.

What Types Of Appliances Need PAT Testing?

A portable appliance is any equipment which is powered by being connected to the electrical mains through a plug, usually 13 amp, for example, kettles, irons, fridges, heaters, TVs, drills and vacuum cleaners. It also includes appliances connected to 110 volt, 240 volt, 415 volt and C Form plugs.

What does a PAT test consist of?

An initial visual inspection checks for:
Damaged flexes
Damaged plugs and equipment (overheating, burn marks, discolouration)
Correctly wired plugs
Correctly rated fuse
Additional tests depending on the class of equipment include:
Earth continuity testing
Insulation resistance
Polarity test
Earth leakage test
A label is attached to each item showing the asset number, date, when next test is due, and whether it passed or failed. The results are processed where an Asset Register and Test Report is prepared and provided to you with the Certificate of Conformity.
Microwave Leakage Test
In addition to the electrical test a microwave radiation leakage test may be required. The doors are checked for corrosion and the seals are checked for signs of wear or damage. Finally a test meter is used to ensure that no dangerous microwave emissions are detected.

How often do my appliances have to be PAT tested?

This will be dependant on your company’s risk assessment and maintenance schedule. If your company does not have these documents for PAT testing we can help with this.

What happens if an item fails PAT testing?

The next course of action will depend on the reason for the item failing, small repairs such as fuse replacements or loose wiring can be corrected on the spot, larger repairs will require further action.

Will the testing be disruptive?

During Portable Appliance Testing we try to minimise any disruption by only disconnecting items as we test them. We can work outside of business hours if this helps.

How can PAT Testing affect our insurance cover?

In the event of a claim your insurance company may reduce, delay or even refuse to pay for damage if the cause is found to be an appliance that has not been tested. Don't take the chance of faulty equipment causing a fire, contact us today.