Jump to content

FRA by the building manager - Common area cupboard


Recommended Posts

We have a share in freehold, but building manager organised a FRA and EICR which does not seem to consider cost effective options.

The cupboard in the common corridor has been identified as needing fire doors. It houses the:

1. telecommunication termination box

2. porch light timer

3. emergency lighting test switch

4. water meters

and the items that we will likely move into a replacement consumer unit inside or outside the cupbaord:

5. doorbell transformer

6. small common area distribution board (identified as needing update).

Q1. Are devices such as the porch light timer considered an electrical hazard? It would seem to be on par with a power socket in the hallway.

Q2. If cupboard only housed 1, 2 3 and 4, would cupboard still need to have a fire door?

Q3. Otherwise could each device have its own metal enclosure to avoid updating the cupboard?

Q4. If the consumer unit was upgraded to a metal unit within the cupboard with a din rail mounted doorbell transformer, surely that would also remove the electrical hazard and fire door requirement too? Or is it the case that an edition 18 consumer unit could still emit smoke?

The reason we ask is that 30min fire doors might need to be 44mm thick and this may clash due to various obstacles. This may involve a 90 degree rotation of the water meter which would add to the cost.

Q5. Otherwise a new DB metal enclosure above the cupboard? All of the other equipment relating to the fire system etc is on the wall above the cupboard, so it would would not be a tragedy.

Thanks. Any advice would be much appreciated.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

If the individual enclosures were to the latest standard of a non combustible housing and the area free from combustibles that would be a reasonable alternative - products to upgrade existing housings also exist:https://envirograf.com/product/electrical-consumer-unit-and-distribution-board-fire-protection-system/

Link to comment
Share on other sites

30min fire doors? No way this set up would have the joule capacity to cause concern. Sure, any electrical equipment can overheat and indeed catch fire but I would say that, providing there are no stored items in the existing cupboard, smoke filling the corridor would be more the issue. Perhaps a lift-out panel with smoke seal in the frame might be an easier option. 

This clap trap about plastic consumer units applies only to domestic installations. Good workmanship, proper maintenance and proper standards for plastic distribution boards would be a better course in any event. likely that wee board will be of better build quality than some of the trash available today, even of the metal clad type!


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks very much for the responses. Other feedback has been to also protect the cabling separately with metal ducting, which might need some planning. The porch light timer can go on a din rail too.

The location of the cupboard, between the main entrance door and corridor door could mean that the consequences of smoke are the main risk ie not having good visibility of the door, and accumulation between those two doors, however small that area is.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You are posting as a guest. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...