Am I allowed to change light fixtures

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    Am I allowed to change light fixtures

    I am a landlord of a property and I want to change some old light fixtures. I have heard about changes in legislation which may mean that such work carried out by non-qualified people is no longer allowable. Is this the case and if so do I need to hire a qualified electrician to do the work? Thanks.

    AFAIK it needs to be carried out by "a competent person". If you consider yourself as such, and are confident that nobody is likely to get injured as a result, go ahead.


      Yes, you can go ahead and change them; the new "Part P" legislation is more to do with changing circuits etc. Clearly, if you managed to balls up the wiring by changing the fittings - which is perfectly possible to do - and ended up electrocuting a tenant, then you would be deservedly hung out to dry by the courts, but that doesn't mean you are not allowed to change them. It would make sense to have it checked by a qualified electrician afterwards (but of course that would cost as much as employing the electrician to do the actual work!).

      By the way, Richie, AFAIK there's no requirement for an individual to be 'competent' in the legal sense (whatever that means!) but from a common sense point of view then of course they should be. I think the 'competent person' wording is normally associated with gas work.


        You can change like for like in a kitchen or bathroom and the work would not be notifiable. i.e. if you have a ceiling rose you can put a new ceiling rose in but not a fancy light fitting.

        Anywhere else you can change to whatever light fitting you like and the work would not be notifiable.

        By notifiable I mean you have to notifiy the local authority that you are going to do it (if you are not "part p registered") or after you have done it (if you are part p registered).

        Building Regulations 2000 Approved Document P
        Table 1: Work that need not be notified to building control bodies
        Work consisting of:
        Replacing any electrical fitting including socket-outlets, control switches and ceiling roses
        Replacing the cable for a single circuit only, where damaged, for example, by fire, rodent or impact (a)
        Re-fixing or replacing the enclosures of existing installation components (b)
        Providing mechanical protection to existing fixed installations (c)
        Work that is not in a kitchen or special location and does not involve a special installation (d) and consists of:
        Adding lighting points (light fittings and switches) to an existing circuit (e)
        Adding socket-outlets and fused spurs to an existing ring or radial circuit (e)
        Installing or upgrading main or supplementary equipotential bonding (f)
        Work not in a special location on:
        Telephone or extra-low voltage wiring and equipment for the purposes of communications, information technology, signalling, control
        and similar purposes
        (a) On condition that the replacement cable has the same current carrying capacity, follows the same route and does not serve
        more than one sub-circuit through a distribution board.
        (b) If the circuit’s protective measures are unaffected.
        (c) If the circuit’s protective measures and current-carrying capacity of conductors are unaffected by increased thermal insulation.
        (d) Special locations and installations are listed in Table 2.
        (e) Only if the existing circuit protective device is suitable and provides protection for the modified circuit, and other relevant safety
        provisions are satisfactory.
        (f) Such work shall comply with other applicable legislation, such as the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations.


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