Is the electric in my garage hooked up?

Associate
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13 Nov 2012
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Bought a house a few months ago and would like to have access to electrical outlets in the garage. There is already an electric cable running to it and has wires running to an outlet and a light fixture (which is no longer there, just the hanging wire).

Looking in the electric cupboard I can't see anything labeled garage, so is it hooked up and just not switched on or does it pre-date this electrical panel and has just never been connected to it?

I know I will need an electrician to come and look at it, but would be nice to know what size job it is going to be to get power in the garage up and running.


Cable inside garage:

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Garage outlet:

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Garage junction box:

51829004090_a3417f8efb_b.jpg


Cable into garage:

51827333217_a17a7fb915_b.jpg


Cable out of house:

51828391133_9f74cd051a_b.jpg


Electrical cupboard:

51828280661_9a1ddb771a_b.jpg


Panel 1:

51829004365_b053d4b31a_b.jpg


Panel 2:

51829004355_0f65fcc7b8_b.jpg
 
Associate
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i would wonder if it is the large cable exiting the bottom right of the fusebox but looking at the pictures of the cables in the garage i would back away slowly and let a professional deal with it. looks like armoured cable from house to garage , so may be salvageble but dont see how they terminated it into a round junction box .or indeed if they terminated the house end properly as from the pictures looks like old style flat cable in the house .

can you access the cable going into the house from the vent and does it go to another junction box?

not a expert but doesnt look right.
 
Soldato
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I'm no electrician but that looks pretty suspect, is that one in the roof the armoured cable going into normal twin and earth but just electrical taped together?

You could find that armoured cable is just spurred off an close by socket in the house somewhere so it wouldn't be appearing by your consumer unit? You need to find where that goes around entering the house really.
 
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Looking at the age of the wiring and outlet in the garage, that will all need replacing. Its hard to see but it looks like the outer sheath of the Steel Wired Armoured Cable has come away, exposing the steel wiring. So that will probably need replacing. You have some capacity on the smaller fuse board, so that shouldnt be a problem. Its hard to know how much trades are charging in your part of the world but I estimate 2 days of a spark's time plus materials. Somewhere between £700 - £1,000 if he does all of the work (if he has to dig out and replace that SWAC).
 
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i would wonder if it is the large cable exiting the bottom right of the fusebox but looking at the pictures of the cables in the garage i would back away slowly and let a professional deal with it. looks like armoured cable from house to garage , so may be salvageble but dont see how they terminated it into a round junction box .or indeed if they terminated the house end properly as from the pictures looks like old style flat cable in the house .

can you access the cable going into the house from the vent and does it go to another junction box?

not a expert but doesnt look right.

Thanks. I wasn't ever going to try to fix myself, I'm ok changing an outlet or ceiling fixture but this is out of my skillset. I asked my father in law that knows a little more about old electric than me and he just grabbed the cable in the garage to see if it was hot :p didn't even ask me if I knew it was live or not.

I can't access the cable without pulling the floorboards up, which I am going to do soon to assess the joists and plan for insulation but it's too cold at the moment for that.

I'm no electrician but that looks pretty suspect, is that one in the roof the armoured cable going into normal twin and earth but just electrical taped together?

You could find that armoured cable is just spurred off an close by socket in the house somewhere so it wouldn't be appearing by your consumer unit? You need to find where that goes around entering the house really.

Yes, to me looks like an armoured cable connected directly to a twin and earth, as you said.

Looking at the age of the wiring and outlet in the garage, that will all need replacing. Its hard to see but it looks like the outer sheath of the Steel Wired Armoured Cable has come away, exposing the steel wiring. So that will probably need replacing. You have some capacity on the smaller fuse board, so that shouldnt be a problem. Its hard to know how much trades are charging in your part of the world but I estimate 2 days of a spark's time plus materials. Somewhere between £700 - £1,000 if he does all of the work (if he has to dig out and replace that SWAC).

Thanks, we just changed electrical supplier (awful time for it) and have a smart meter appointment next week so I might mention it to them while they're out.
 
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i would wonder if it is the large cable exiting the bottom right of the fusebox but looking at the pictures of the cables in the garage i would back away slowly and let a professional deal with it..
Having looked it I agree with your opinion. It needs to be replaced. It looks like there have been several bodges over a number of years including that SWA section.
 
Soldato
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1 Jun 2013
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Bought a house a few months ago and would like to have access to electrical outlets in the garage. There is already an electric cable running to it and has wires running to an outlet and a light fixture (which is no longer there, just the hanging wire).

Looking in the electric cupboard I can't see anything labeled garage, so is it hooked up and just not switched on or does it pre-date this electrical panel and has just never been connected to it?

I know I will need an electrician to come and look at it, but would be nice to know what size job it is going to be to get power in the garage up and running.

It looks to me like the garage connection is very old indeed, and was bodged (in several places) a long time ago. At some point much more recently, the consumer unit was replaced (and extended with a second unit for the shower). I think at that time the electrician said the garage stuff was not safe, and needed to be redone completely. The owner elected to not have that done to save money, and simply had the old garage circuit disconnected.

It looks to me that you need to have the whole connection to the garage and inside the garage redone properly and to modern standards. At least you've got spare slots in the consumer unit where it could come from.
 
Soldato
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Neither is asking for electrical help on a computer forum
You are aware that there are people with expertise in the relevant fields and sub sections dedicated to different subjects on this computer forum aren't you, granddad?
 
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Associate
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Thanks, we just changed electrical supplier (awful time for it) and have a smart meter appointment next week so I might mention it to them while they're out.

just a tip if there fitting a smart meter may want to ask them about a isolator between the meter and the cu. they may already be fitting it but i would check then if any work needs to be carried out in the future your electrician can isolate the electrics without the main fuse needing to be pulled ( i know only dno allowed to remove it, but some electricians will risk it).

reason i suggest this is we are with eon and just before christmas we wanted our cu changed and the electrician wanted a isolator fitting...shouldnt cost that much but supplier has to fit it...cost us 98pounds +vat onto bill but heyho had to be done.

by the way we have 2 consumer units and the call centre wanted to charge us twice.. i told them that i only wanted the day unit isolating and the night unit could stay (by this stage was a bit annoyed with there attitude) guy comes out..hey presto fits a double unit same money,,
 
Soldato
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As other have said, the garage wiring looks highly suspect. I wouldn't bank on being able to reuse any of it.

If you've got an electrician in I'd also look at getting the kitchen socket circuit breaker to changed from an MCB to an RCBO. If the board is still supported this should be an easy job and will give you a substantial safety upgrade.
 
Associate
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As other have said, the garage wiring looks highly suspect. I wouldn't bank on being able to reuse any of it.

If you've got an electrician in I'd also look at getting the kitchen socket circuit breaker to changed from an MCB to an RCBO. If the board is still supported this should be an easy job and will give you a substantial safety upgrade.

Whats the difference? Currently having my house rewired and thinking would it be worth stating rcbo instead of mcb? Or are they likely to use a rcbo as they are doing it all to the new 18th edition standard?
 
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@casper_uk
Mcb are like fuses, so trip when over current draw
Rcd are earth leakage so trip when an electrical component breaks down to earth
Rcbo combine both into one unit, big benefit is that with a single Rcd covering several mcb you may get close to or exceed the mA rating of the rcd and then get nuisance tripping.
 
Man of Honour
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Looks like 2 or 3 cables have been removed including the one for the clips and hole at the bottom right of the electrics cupboard.

Given the state of that setup I'd definitely get someone who knows what they are doing in to diagnose and sort it.
 
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