What is a Domestic Installer?
Since the introduction of Part P of the Building Regulations (Electrical Safety-Dwellings) the definition of ‘Domestic Installer’ has been established. In the electrical industry ‘Domestic Installers’ are not considered to be fully qualified electricians and therefore are not required to undergo the usual training that typically takes an apprentice or trainee much longer to complete.
A domestic installer is generally expected to have a very good understanding of new electrical installations in domestic environments, be familiar with the current requirements of the IET Wiring Regulations BS 7671, associated Building Regulations together with the competence to perform fundamental inspection and testing on a new domestic electrical installation.
The level of experience that a domestic installer may have varies very broadly, many domestic installers are fully qualified electricians with a wealth of experience within the electrical industry. However, there are also many who have not completed an electrical apprenticeship or gained the equivalent qualifications and experience as an electrician. In fact, training providers such as Ipswich Skills Centre provide training for people new to the electrical industry with no prior experience whatsoever.
Although some 'Registered Domestic Installer Scheme' providers will consider domestic installer registration applications from those holding a current 17th Edition of the Wiring Regulations qualification if they have sufficient installation experience, Ipswich Skills Centre highly recommends that the following three qualifications are achieved for registration purposes:
Level 3 Award in the Requirements for Electrical Installations (18th Edition of the Wiring Regulations)
These qualifications are included within our new entrant Domestic Installer Training Package (Option 2).
The development of domestic installation practical skills to the required standards and achievement of the three qualifications can be completed relatively quickly with a typical study and training period being around 160 hours in total.
Domestic Installers will also be expected to provide evidence of experience and work that they have carried out to demonstrate competence to an assessor from their chosen scheme provider (e.g. ELECSA, NAPIT etc.). The Domestic Installer generally chooses a minor installation (this may be in their own home) and a major installation (e.g. a house rewire) that he or she would like to be inspected and makes the necessary preparations for the assessment in accordance with their chosen scheme provider requirements.
What is a competent person?
The short answer would be 'somebody who can complete a specific task safely and effectively'. However, this can be very difficult to assess especially with regards to an electrician or domestic installer as the work they will be doing may vary significantly. Some of the basic expected requirements are that the person carrying out electrical work has had sufficient training and experience.
This does not mean that a person who holds a Level 3 qualification in electrical installations is competent to carry out work on all electrical installations. There will likely be areas that they are unfamiliar with. However, experience and training will have given them at least the ability to work safely and assess if they are in fact competent to carry out a specific task.
The role of a 'Qualified Supervisor' can be varied but will often include responsibilties to supervise other workers, oversee domestic installation activities on-site and sign-off work that has been completed by other operatives to verify that it meets the required standards.
A 'Qualified Supervisor' holds the ultimate qualification available for those involved in electrical installation activities within domestic environments. This industry standard qualification automatically satisfies the requirements for registration on a 'Competent Person Scheme' subject to providing evidence of work carried out to be able to demonstrate their competence for the scope for which they have applied.
The qualification is very similar as that for an 'Electrician' in the way it is structured but with the focus being on electrical installations within dwellings, in simple terms this means electrical installations in houses and similar type premises.
Just like the 'Electrician', a 'Qualfied Supervisor' completes a qualification that combines both knowledge and performance units with the required levels of competence being assessed from evidence generated from performing installation activities in real work environments.
Please be aware that the entry and registration criteria required by a scheme provider may possibly change over time. Ipswich Skills Centre accepts no responsibilty or liability for any such changes and strongly recommends that individuals check and confirm the current entry and registration criteria with their preferred scheme provider('s) prior to booking and entering onto a training programme.