If you’re a Queenslander and love doing your restricted electrical work, think again – because the government may be coming for you! The state’s Electrical Safety Office (ESO) is in the midst of a blitz against illegal electrical work completed by unlicensed individuals because it’s not just illegal but also extremely dangerous.
“We are doing everything in our power to stamp out this dangerous practice,” said ESO chief Donna Heelan after a local concreting business was fined an eye-watering $42,500 for their DIY electrical work in Queensland.
Did you know:
- DIY electrical work Queensland-wide attracts an on-the-spot $400 fine for individuals.
- Fines for DIY electrical work Australia-wide start at $2,000 for corporations.
- An individual posing as an electrical contractor was fined $100,000 for unlicensed electrical contracting.
- A breach that risks illness, injury or death attracts a maximum $600,000 fine for individuals, $3 million for a corporation, and up to 5 years in prison.
- Unlicensed electrical work could void your home insurance and cost you everything.
But if you’re someone who knows quite a bit about safe electrical work, perhaps through an electrical work training permit, but you’re not actually holding electrical licences – what exactly can you do at home to save yourself a few dollars that would otherwise go to a local electrician?
Can you even change a light bulb these days without the authorities jumping on your back? How about changing a power point or a light switch?
According to the governing, the answer is quite simple: No, you are not allowed to perform electrical equipment work without an electrical work licence. But what is “electrical work”, exactly?
According to the Electrical Safety Act 2002, it’s anything involving “the manufacturing, constructing, installing, testing, maintaining, repairing, altering, removing, or replacing of electrical equipment”.
So, without a restricted electrical work licence or other electrical work licences, you CAN NOT do things like:
- Electrical installation, such as installing or moving a PowerPoint
- Replacing a light switch
- Replacing a light-fitting batten holder
- Repairing an electrical appliance
- Changing a ceiling fan for a light
- DIY electrical wiring work
- Changing an extension lead plug-end.
What electrical work can I do without a licence?
The good news is that something as basic as changing a light bulb, and even your modern down-light bulbs, is perfectly fine.
You can even source and purchase all your own electrical accessories if you desire – even major electrical appliances that ultimately needs to be hard-wired. But the actual hard wiring needs to be carried out by a licensed electrician.
A few other surprising things that are A-OK to DIY include:
- Replacing a drive belt in a washing machine
- Cutting openings for air conditioning units for air conditioner units
- Fitting an electric wall oven.
However, you are NOT allowed to connect up that wall oven, and you’ll have to be extremely mindful of not touching or damaging any wires in the wall cavity – especially when you’re doing the actual cutting, screwing or nailing.
What is the electrical certificate of compliance QLD?
In Queensland and other states around Australia, authorised electrical work is rubber-stamped by the certificate of compliance – which is the state of Queensland’s method of verifying if the work was done professionally by a qualified electrical fitter and in full compliance with the rules.
You can check that qualified electricians holding a contractor licence you’ve got your eye on to complete your own electrical work fully licenced by using Queensland’s Electrical Licence Register at fswqap.worksafe.qld.gov.au/elis/
You certainly don’t need to worry about this if you simply put your faith in the friendly team at Your Electrical Expert, who holds an electrical contractor licence.
Combining fast, same-day electrical services with great prices, experienced fully-licenced specialists and a smile every time, give our local electrical team a call today.