18th Edition Survey:
reveals surprising insights 

There's still a lot to be done to fully em­bed the 18th edi­tion changes

  • Ex­clus­ive trade sur­vey re­veals nearly half of elec­trical con­tract­ors do not feel ‘fully con­fid­ent’ in terms of un­der­stand­ing the 18th Edi­tion changes

  • New AF­DDs and surge pro­tec­tion ad­vice high­lighted as the most chal­len­ging tech­nical areas

  • 81% of elec­trical pro­fes­sion­als com­mit to fur­ther 18th Edi­tion-re­lated train­ing this year

Des­pite an in­tens­ive pub­li­city cam­paign ahead of the man­dat­ory in­tro­duc­tion of the 18th Edi­tion Wir­ing Reg­u­la­tions on 1st Janu­ary 2019, an ex­clus­ive sur­vey of elec­trical pro­fes­sion­als car­ried out by Hager, shows that many still ad­mit to lack­ing con­fid­ence when it comes to fully un­der­stand­ing the changes, and cite AF­DDs and surge pro­tec­tion as the tech­nical areas caus­ing them the most con­cern.


Con­fid­ence and com­pli­ance

The re­search looked at whether those in the elec­trical trade were feel­ing fully con­fid­ent that they un­der­stood all the changes de­tailed in the 18th Edi­tion. Just over half (55%), said they did feel fully con­fid­ent, but the re­main­ing 45% ad­mit­ted they still do not fully un­der­stand all the rule changes.

When asked if they felt pre­pared to com­ply with the 18th Edi­tion amend­ments, two thirds said they were pre­pared, but 34% answered no.


Tech­nical con­cerns 

AFDD and surge pro­tec­tion topped the list of tech­nical areas caus­ing most con­cern to the in­dustry as it ad­apts to a new reg­u­lat­ory land­scape. Nearly half (48%) high­lighted AF­DDs when asked which area of the 18th Edi­tion they were least sure about, while nearly one third (29%) se­lec­ted surge pro­tec­tion meas­ures. Amend­ments to over­load pro­tec­tion, RCDs and device in­cor­por­a­tion all ap­pear to be well un­der­stood, ac­cord­ing to the sur­vey.


Help is on hand 

In­ter­est­ingly, those in the trade have re­lied upon on­line help to get them­selves up-to-speed with the 18th Edi­tion. On­line sources, thanks to their im­me­di­acy and con­veni­ence were fa­voured over other chan­nels by 44% of elec­tri­cians. In­dustry bod­ies were cited by 30% of the elec­tri­cians ques­tioned as a fa­voured sup­plier of rel­ev­ant and ap­pro­pri­ate in­form­a­tion.


Keen to learn more

While the 18th Edi­tion changes are already man­dat­ory in the mar­ket­place, and des­pite more than half of elec­trical pro­fes­sion­als say­ing they are fully con­fid­ent about their know­ledge levels, the ma­jor­ity (81%) still in­tend to seek fur­ther guid­ance and in­vest in ad­di­tional train­ing this year.

This com­mit­ment of time and re­sources in­ten­ded to deepen their un­der­stand­ing, shows how elec­tri­cians ap­pre­ci­ate the need to act com­pli­antly as the ef­fects of the 18th Edi­tion in­tro­duc­tion be­gin to be felt into the fu­ture.

Ian Smith for Hager, com­ments: “After the high pro­file lead-in period to the in­tro­duc­tion of the 18th Edi­tion, it is per­haps un­sur­pris­ing that elec­trical con­tract­ors in the main feel fully con­fid­ent about the new rules and how to en­force them.

“However, there re­mains a sig­ni­fic­ant pro­por­tion who ad­mit to a lack of full 18th Edi­tion know­ledge and the po­ten­tial for non-com­pli­ance when un­der­tak­ing in­stall­a­tions. For this group in par­tic­u­lar, as well as for the in­dustry in gen­eral, it is wel­come to see that the vast ma­jor­ity in­tend to seek fur­ther train­ing to sup­ple­ment their know­ledge and ac­quire new skills to com­ply.

“Hager has been work­ing hard to sup­port the in­dustry through a period of trans­form­at­ive change and ini­ti­at­ives such as Hager’s in­dustry-lead­ing chat­bot, Reg, have proven pop­u­lar with pro­fes­sion­als keen to find out what they need to know re­gard­ing the 18th Edi­tion. This is also re­flec­ted in the sig­ni­fic­ant num­bers sign­ing up for the 18th Edi­tion-re­lated train­ing courses we are run­ning across the year at our be­spoke train­ing centre in Telford.”


Do electricians need 18th edition? 

The new version of the standard BS 7671: 2018 provided electricians with a six month transition period to get up to speed with the new regulations. At present, all electricians must comply with the updated regulations. 

What does the 18th edition allow?

The 18th Edition of the Wiring Regulations is the safety standard in which all electricians in the UK must comply to. Please refer to our 18th Edition Bitesize guide for guidance.

Is the 17th Edition still valid? 

Any installation that is completed before January 2019 must comply with the 17th Edition Wiring Regulations. 




Arc Fault Detection Devices 

Arc fault protection devices (AFDD) use microprocessors to identify characteristic current flow and voltage curves that indicate an arc fault and automatically trip the affected circuit.

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Selection of RCD Types 

RCD's exist in various different forms and react differently depending on the presence of DC components or different frequencies

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Overload Protection 

Devices such as switches, RCCBs etc. in distribution boards and consumer units may have historically had their rated current determined after having taken diversity into account but without having considered overload protection of the devices.

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BEAMA Guides

A collection of the latest guides relating to 18th Edition, Hager is proud to be a technical contributor to these guides which provide technical advice on a range of 18th Edition related topics. 

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