- Commercial Electrical Services
Is your site or workplace compliant with AS/NZS 3760:2010 and AS/NZS 3012:2010 standards?
What is an RCD?
A residual-current device (RCD) is an electrical wiring device that disconnects a circuit whenever it detects that the electric current is not balanced between the energized (line) conductor(s) and the return (neutral) conductor. In normal circumstances, these two wires are expected to carry matching currents, and any difference usually indicates a short circuit or other electrical anomaly is present. Even a small leakage current can mean a risk of harm or death due to electric shock if the leaking electric current passes through a human being; a current of around 30mA (0.030 Amps) is potentially sufficient to cause cardiac arrest or serious harm if it persists for more than a small fraction of a second. Through design an RCD will disconnect the conducting wires with the purpose of preventing serious injury.
Why test RCDs
Workplaces and sites may have regulatory requirements to ensure that the devices are functional and operating within expected guidelines. By testing the RCD’s you ensure that if there is a fault it can be found and rectified before someone is hurt.
Types of RCD
There are a number of different types of RCD. These include portable switches, power point switches, combination circuit breakers and mounted switches.
What compliance reporting is required?
The following documentation must be kept for all RCDs:
- Register of all equipment
- Record of formal inspection & tests
- Repair register
- Record of all faulty equipment showing details of services & corrective action
The RCD Test Results:
- Testers name who carried out the test
- Date testing carried out & re-test date
- Result from testing : Pass/Fail
- License no. of the electrician or certificate no. of the competent person carrying out the testing
- Asset Id No of the items tested
What is the difference between Â circuit breakers, surge protectors and RCDs?
Circuit Breakers and fuses are designed to prevent overloading and short circuits. They cut the power when electrical demand is higher than the device limit.
Surge protectors are used to protect equipment and appliances against power surges. These devices do not offer any protection against electrocution.
Only RCDs will prevent electrocution by cutting the power to a circuit in the event of an earth leakage.
This why you need to ensure that your RCDs are regularly tested.