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Posted By Topic: existing 2 core lighting cable with no earth

Nov 29 2018 10:39

Good morning,

We are doing a job which is EQC repairs on an old house and the lighting has been wired in 2 core cable and therefore has no earth. I know if everything is left as it is and we just upgrade the switchboard, there is no requirement for us to add an earth to the light fittings.

Does this still apply if the existing light fittings have an earth connection on them or do they still comply with being above a certain height?
I have been told this used to be the case but I'm not sure if it still is.


Nov 29 2018 10:50

ESR 113.
For anything to remain in service; 3 conditions must be satisfied.
1 it must have complied when installed with the rules of that time;
2 it must still comply with those rules;
3 it must not be electrically unsafe as defined in ESR 5

Nov 29 2018 17:06

"it must still comply with those rules;"

If the installer has no access to an old rule book do you think he can still repair to those old rules?

He would just be guessing?

Nov 29 2018 21:02

"it must still comply with those rules;" I find this rule one of the most ambiguous, often I’m guessing as to weather something was ok once or not. I feel this rule should be abolished in some circumstances and the work be brought up to today’s standards.

Nov 29 2018 21:49

You're allowed to put that rule aside and bring anything up to the current standards if you want to, and your customer wants to pay for it.


Nov 29 2018 22:14

That’s the benefit of experience. Also if it was installed long enough ago it may have been Inspected when / before it was placed in service.

Most of the old regs are available and can be downloaded.

Nov 30 2018 11:19

Up until 1993, officially EVERY installation job had to be inspected by the (then) Supply Authority.
Whether that actually happened is another story entirely.

As for the intent of 113; it isn't going to change.
It's a well-established principle of NZ law in all fields, not just electrical, that what was OK when introduced remains OK as long as it doen't become actually dangerous.

I find it best to forget about "compliance" of old stuff and concentrate on "Is it unsafe?"