The week before last we had a call out from a landlord in Forest Hill who was renting out a 3 bedroom flat to students. He needed a Forest Hill commercial electrician because the power had gone off. There is nothing particularly unusual about that, we get similar call outs each month.
But what makes this a blog-worthy incident is what we found when we arrived. As electricians in Forest Hill, we see all manner of electrical mistakes, from bodged DIY jobs to overloading circuits with appliances. This incident serves as a warning to all landlords in South London to check what their tenants are doing with the electrics. Happily, the consumer unit was bang up to date and tripped before anyone was hurt.
The first thing we noticed in the living room was the fact that there was only 2 wall sockets in the room so the students had used a couple of 4-gang extension leads. This was concerning in itself, but there was worse to come.
In the first bedroom, we found another extension lead in use, but not in a normal way. The students were from overseas and, for whatever reason, had not bought adaptors to enable them to connect their laptops and other electrical appliances safely to the UK supply. Their solution was to buy a cheap extension lead from the local DIY store, poke something in the earth socket so that their 2 pin plugs could be forced into the now open live and neutral. They had used a couple of bits of wood in two of the sockets but a broken screwdriver wrapped in paper for the other!
Apart from the danger to the students, the way they were set up was seriously overloading the system. This could quite easily have endangered the other flats in the building as it could have started an electrical fire. These can start un-noticed in the wall and by the time the alarm has been raised, can be well established.
So how did we solve the problem? We called the landlord who came over fairly quickly and we pointed out the situation. As reputable commercial electricians for Forest Hill, we persuaded him that the number of sockets was insufficient for the use of the flat by students and so within a couple of days, we installed several more sockets. To sort out the idiotic use of the extension leads, the landlord actually bought some adaptors for the students to use.
If you are a landlord needing the services of a reputable electrician in Forest Hill, give us a call on 0208 406 9834. We offer a 24 hour emergency electrical service.