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Posted By Topic: Outdoor Socket outlet in industrial enviroment

Oct 06 2016 20:19

Hi, someone on my work placed a 3 phase socket outlet for a sump pump outside. I told him that I believed that it should be behind a RCD, but another sparky told me that only outdoor socket outlets in residential areas needs to be behind a RCD. The outlet is for a sump pump, but I'm sure our fitters will use it also for welding and other if they get the change. I can't find the conclusion in the wiring rules, or I must have missed it. Any comments? TA

Oct 06 2016 20:32

Have a look at


Oct 06 2016 21:34

Which part of 1.5.6 is it that makes an RCD a required item.
Not a. Part 2. 2.6 is all about RCD's in domestic installations.
Not b. Part 2 which is about RCD protecting wiring systems.
Not c. Part 2. 4.10.5 which is about RCD protecting heating cables.
Maybe d. Part 2. Section 6. Socket outlets installed in damp situations.
Not e. Based on the information provided in the original query none of the standards cited apply.

While RCD's are mandated for domestic installations the decision to RCD protect socket outlets in an "other" installations is made based on a risk assessment by the owner / operator of the installation.
RCD's in many areas are a reasonable practicable step to reduce risk.
The only mandated installation of RCD's in "other" installations would be in areas covered in section 6 of AS/NZS3000:2007.


Oct 06 2016 21:42 tells me that:
I have to look at (a) Part 2 Clause 2.6, which tell me that RCD is only for residential areas, but outdoor is not mentioned.

(d) damp situations as in part 2, section 6.
Which tells me (iii) Fountains and water features. Does this tells me, a sump pump is a water feature, and yes you need a RCD?

Or a sump pump is not a water feature, and you're not in a residential area, so no, you can do without RCD, although it is outside?

Oct 06 2016 22:19

We all agree then

I was just saying it was good place to start looking.

I've even had a quick at the listed standards and I don't any of them apply either.

Just because of where I work I add RCD's just about to everything now. Just added one to a 15kw 3 phase motor, no problems so far, fingers crossed


Oct 07 2016 08:22

The major point to take away is that just because it is not explicitly mandated in the Regs or Standards doesn't mean that it is not a good idea.

A risk assessment by the electrician on behalf of the client may indicate that the fitting of an rcd is a prudent step to take.

Involving the client in the process usually gets better acceptance of the outcome.

Any of the situations in Part 2 section 6 could be used as a starting point especially the hose down area as it is broadly defined and leaves the details to the reader.

Oct 07 2016 20:14

Actually, the major point to take away here is to Read and Understand the rules for ourselves, and not to rely on what is or isnt said around the smoko room table or wholesalers counter, or here.