Found 12th Jun
My partner and I have bought our first home and it's in need of a complete refurbishment.

I have posted other questions about central heating and windows and it has been very helpful. Some nice people in here.

My question now is about the status of the electrics in the new house. The photo below shows the fuse box located in a cupboard which we want to knock down to make more space for the kitchen.

We would like to know if we have to consider replacing or doing something it.

Also how difficult would it be to move the fuse box under the stairs locate on the back of the cabinet? How much could it cost?

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Thank you

33 Comments

it's the wire that comes into your house that would need moving by the ellecy board. the fuse box moving is easily done .

The black thing on the right is the main fuse and above it the meter. Only your electricity company can move them and cost likely to be dependent on the work needed on the incoming cable.

Original Poster

Any idea how much SSE could charge for this straight move 5 feet away?

try and find where the black cable comes into the house . it may be near the wall you want to mount it on. that way it will be cheaper

Hi that incoming cable is lead sheath known as paper lead. Its a cable sheath earth (known as TN-S System) It's around 50 years old nothing wrong with it , what supplier would probably do is dig outside in your garden and find where it enters house , hopefully near the tip of red arrow . Then cut it and join a new piece (underground joint) on to a outside meter cabinet most likely . Then cut the redundant piece off. The problem you have then got is all your circuit cables that are in the old cupboard will all need extending and a adaptable box will need to go where fuseboard is currently is . And each cable joined in that box and routed to new fuseboard location. Or if you are doing a rewire then no need to join old cables. Either way u need a part p sparky as that will need appropriate paperwork . And you will need new consumer unit to comply with 17th edition regs regarding rcd on all circuits and would have to be metal consumer unit.

those black fuse boxes are now condemned, I would get hold of your power supply company or the power grid and seek a replacement. could take upto 3 month but I believe they should be doing it free of charge, only then if the workmen agree could it be moved unless you pay through the roof

Original Poster

Are you sure about the black fuse box? Have you done this in the past?

bigweapon07

those black fuse boxes are now condemned, I would get hold of your power … those black fuse boxes are now condemned, I would get hold of your power supply company or the power grid and seek a replacement. could take upto 3 month but I believe they should be doing it free of charge, only then if the workmen agree could it be moved unless you pay through the roof



Condemned???

Half the country has cut outs like that ! I have pulled many a fuses in one of those cut outs! Granted if you had it moved they would put new cutout but if it's left where it is nothing wrong with it as long as it's not damaged.

KEVIN6BZ

Condemned??? Half the country has cut outs like that ! I have pulled … Condemned??? Half the country has cut outs like that ! I have pulled many a fuses in one of those cut outs! Granted if you had it moved they would put new cutout but if it's left where it is nothing wrong with it as long as it's not damaged.


yep, there is an unknown nation replacement programme, which hasn't been advertised like the smart meter style advertising that's going on. Had mine replaced by National Grid upon request. got a nice new shiny grey module.
they refer to the black ones as death boxes.

Original Poster

If they replace free of charge...would they move it a few feet a way free of charge too? If they take 3 months to come to do the job it means i will have to knock down the cupboard and leave only this wall...it seems a bit complicated.

Can an standard electrician move this a few feet away and later get SSE to change the type of box and cable?

Relocation costs about the £1000 mark. Recently had a quote for it myself

daniq

If they replace free of charge...would they move it a few feet a way free … If they replace free of charge...would they move it a few feet a way free of charge too? If they take 3 months to come to do the job it means i will have to knock down the cupboard and leave only this wall...it seems a bit complicated.Can an standard electrician move this a few feet away and later get SSE to change the type of box and cable?



​no

Could u not leave it where it all is and incorporate it all within a kitchen unit or something ?

KEVIN6BZ

Hi that incoming cable is lead sheath known as paper lead. Its a cable … Hi that incoming cable is lead sheath known as paper lead. Its a cable sheath earth (known as TN-S System) It's around 50 years old nothing wrong with it , what supplier would probably do is dig outside in your garden and find where it enters house , hopefully near the tip of red arrow . Then cut it and join a new piece (underground joint) on to a outside meter cabinet most likely . Then cut the redundant piece off. The problem you have then got is all your circuit cables that are in the old cupboard will all need extending and a adaptable box will need to go where fuseboard is currently is . And each cable joined in that box and routed to new fuseboard location. Or if you are doing a rewire then no need to join old cables. Either way u need a part p sparky as that will need appropriate paperwork . And you will need new consumer unit to comply with 17th edition regs regarding rcd on all circuits and would have to be metal consumer unit.



​This is spot on.. Did some digging around re this myself recently and got the same info as this.
National Grid are the only people that can move your supply, and as stated by Kevin it'll most likely be to an outside cabinet. The electric board will move the meter. And you will need an electrician to connect it all and move your consumer unit

Original Poster

We are planning to go for a rectangle shape kitchen. The lines in red are the new layout. Green the kitchen worktops The yellow cross the existing location. Any idea of how i could do to get this out of the way to make our dream kitchen?


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Are u rewiring the whole house? as this may be best way? Then sparky can get all the new cables to under stairs with new fuseboard and bite the bullet and pay for incoming supply relocation to outside meter box on outside wall understairs. And new fuseboard would go back to back with meter box . Get a quote from dno and show them where u want new supply to .

If you can organise a replacement through national grid they dig up just outside the wall where the supply comes into the property. They then cut the mains supply there. Put a new module on the wall to the existing meter. They then reconnect the supply in a huge black junction box in the hole and fill with rubber compound then the hole is filled. Might be worthwhile finding a sparky who could work at same time as the grid and work between them to move its location as the grid will do whats easiest and if your power comes in under the stair area wall then you may be in luck as it will be easier for the grid to do and get off for the day.
Easiest way to find where it comes in is go under floor boards

Original Poster

I hope we don't need to rewire. The Home Report says:

From main public supply with the consumer unit and meter being
situated in the dining room cupboard, Wiring where seen is of PVC
clad cabling serving 13amp sockets.

NICEIC Safety checks are advised in accordance with current recommended
standards.


How much do you reckon the move could cost me?

Supply Realocation:
New fuseboard and wire reallocation:

I know it is very difficult to give an accurate cost but I need to have a rough idea to know how much of my saving goes to the mortgage deposit and how much to save for the renovation. Also I am sure your rough estimations will be closer to the real cost than any estimation from me with 0 experience in diy.

Thank you

daniq

I hope we don't need to rewire. The Home Report says:From main public … I hope we don't need to rewire. The Home Report says:From main public supply with the consumer unit and meter beingsituated in the dining room cupboard, Wiring where seen is of PVCclad cabling serving 13amp sockets.NICEIC Safety checks are advised in accordance with current recommendedstandards.How much do you reckon the move could cost me?Supply Realocation:New fuseboard and wire reallocation:I know it is very difficult to give an accurate cost but I need to have a rough idea to know how much of my saving goes to the mortgage deposit and how much to save for the renovation. Also I am sure your rough estimations will be closer to the real cost than any estimation from me with 0 experience in diy.Thank you


Have you looked at getting a builder in first to see if you can knock down those walls without steel lintels being put in as looking at the floorplan there may be a supporting wall there.
Id cost about £1k-£1.5k just for board and rewire of kitchen. As theres a bit to do to join the circuits back up and move the board. To be fair id just go whole hoggle £2k full house rewire. Put all the sockets etc where you want them for future doing rest of house up. Even get outside lights in and sockets etc. Be worth the extra spend.
Then on top if nat grid charge.
Remember you will add value to house so keeping back a bit more money will help when you remortgage as your LTV will be lower thus a better rate and better house.

Edited by: "bigweapon07" 12th Jun

As a qualified sparky 17 years I would do
Full rewire. And you are gonna need part rewire of kitchen anyway. I wouldn't want all those cables joined and the adaptable box has to be accessible and not under the floor. As for that paper lead incoming cable it will be a dig up outside and join job as I expect your ground floor is concrete and not as simple as lift a floor board and see where it goes. I would say £2500 - £3000 for rewire unless you do a lot of the chasing out of walls. as with the main cable repositioning it's all down to where that cable comes in . It could be coming in below lounge or if you are lucky below the stairs in that case I would have thought £1000 should do it. They will dig up expose cable . strip it back , cut off old piece , join new piece , seal it all in a compound join and hook up to new outside meter box . And yes they work live there's no turning off the supply to that cable! I have seen it being done!
Edited by: "KEVIN6BZ" 12th Jun

Original Poster

Thanks for all the information.

To add more information, under the carpet there are floorboards, internal walls are plasterboard too and external walls are double cavity wall. The sockets in the house look standard square white sockets (which don't look very old) and the Home Report as I said a few post above doesn't highlight any needed work.

I am really overwhelmed and a bit confused with these figures. I thought the wiring in this house wasn't too bad and it didn't need mayor work.

In regards to the move from the cupboard to under the stairs I expected under £1000 for the electrical work.

Can't I just get a qualify electrician to move the existing sheath earth cable with the black box 6 feet away in the direction where the cable is coming from? If I don't cut it or disconnect the black box? just a simple uncrew and screw a few feet away?

I know it is a bit controversial but I can't afford anything above 1.5k to do this job.

No!!!!! Don't even attempt to move that cut -out and paper lead incoming cable , you will be doing it live . That cable will be so stiff and difficult to bend and manoeuvre! It will be illegal to mess with it as it belongs to the dno . They will sue you big style if you short out the inside of that cable it will go with a hell of a bang . And you will blow fuse at transformer and cause a big power cut in the area. Not even the dno will attempt to move that cable as it is , they will dig outside , cut and join new piece to new position.

Original Poster

If I get SSE to move the cut -out and paper lead incoming cable and let say it cost £1200.

How much can I expect to pay for the rest if the work, to have an idea:

1. Wago blocks ( As "refix" suggrsted) to join wires to run the cables for sockets, etc to the new fuse location? This box would be fitted in the wall to hide it.

3.. Rewire kitchen: New socket, induction cooker, extra appliances...

3. Add ceiling spotlights and fire alarms

4. Install 7-8 extra sockets around the house.

daniq

We are planning to go for a rectangle shape kitchen. The lines in red are … We are planning to go for a rectangle shape kitchen. The lines in red are the new layout. Green the kitchen worktops The yellow cross the existing location. Any idea of how i could do to get this out of the way to make our dream kitchen?



First the wall may well be a supporting wall so taking it out may well be more difficult.
Second as you don't have a utility room could you not just stack your washer and dryer and ironing board and hover and save all the work. I don't think you will ever recover the costs.
Getting a downstairs bathroom in next to the front door will add more value.

The kitchen will either have a wow factor or not irrespective of if you include the 3ft cubbyhole.

Just food for thought.

Original Poster

I don't think there is a supportive wall as part of the cupboard. Several of the neighbours have opened up the space to make the wow factor kitchen that we would love to have.

All the houses in the development were built by the council and they are the same layout.

Below the neighbour’s kitchen. The cupboard in my house is located where the small left work top with the low cabinet is. In our house we would like to have an L shaped kitchen with the dining table in the middle parallel to the longest worktop sowe would have space for the small kitchen unit with the worktop on the left.

http://alto-live.s3.amazonaws.com/ZOCV-nY-xiQYN4dT_UAmI76p4ic/t0HyUg9o17ir-s6i2IAV-II__Ls/Photo/[3]/ZylL0KcTcEur7sgZ4XY_uw.jpg

I'd have a word with the DNO after you have moved in - it may be possible to relocate the meter to within the new "small kitchen unit" - i.e. on the wall behind the base unit and the unit adapted to fit. Some of the existing cables from the existing consumer unit may run straight down inside the wall and under the floor for the ground floor circuits and cooker - these cables may just need to be pulled back to be relocated to the new consumer unit next to the meter - this would reduce the amount of jointing of cables needed (especially eliminating the 10mm2 cooker cable). So just the two lighting circuits, upstairs ring main (and perhaps immersion heater??) would need extending to the new consumer unit - just 6-7 cables to be jointed - this could be on, or in short stub the wall in appropriate adaptable boxes and accessible by some removable decorative cover.

Also ask your neighbour where their meter is - and if they where the owners when the work was done? It may be possible to not to have to reinvent the wheel!

Edited by: "Van1973" 13th Jun

You can check if it's supporting if you lift a floorboard upstairs to see if there's any joist sitting on the wall or if the wall continues above it and is made of bricks or blocks.

daniq

I don't think there is a supportive wall as part of the cupboard. Several … I don't think there is a supportive wall as part of the cupboard. Several of the neighbours have opened up the space to make the wow factor kitchen that we would love to have.All the houses in the development were built by the council and they are the same layout.Below the neighbour’s kitchen. The cupboard in my house is located where the small left work top with the low cabinet is. In our house we would like to have an L shaped kitchen with the dining table in the middle parallel to the longest worktop sowe would have space for the small kitchen unit with the worktop on the left.



If taking the wall out is not an issue and you want it similar to your neighbours just leave it where it is and mount a kitchen cupboard over the consumer unit. Then between the base unit and wall unit just build forward a fake wall to cover mains cable and tile it. Job done at next to no cost.

Original Poster

This seem like a very good idea. How difficult would it be to move the sheath earth cable, fuse box and meter to the left wall in the cupboard which will be the wall in the kitchen? Then build a fake wall and put a nice little door to access the meter and fuse box?
http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/xq90/923/xu2PbC.png

http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/xq90/922/TK4Pi0.png

Edited by: "daniq" 13th Jun

daniq

This seem like a very good idea. How difficult would it be to move the … This seem like a very good idea. How difficult would it be to move the sheath earth cable, fuse box and meter to the left wall in the cupboard which will be the wall in the kitchen? Then build a fake wall and put a nice little door to access the meter and fuse box?



Right, now I have looked properly you do indeed need to move it across onto the other wall.
The cheapest and easiest way will be to move it round to a lower position so there will be no change of length on the main cable and fuse. Routing the lower cabling runs would then also be straightforward.
The cable runs to the upper floor will need rerouting (as they will need to be increased in length) but this should only be the upstairs ring main and the upstairs lighting ring (the floor upstairs above will need taking up).
It should be a day's work.

You will probably have to get a few people in to quote to find somebody who will do the work. Don't bother with the big boys as they will try and sell you full rewires and or new consumer units.

Personally if you are putting units there you are not really gaining much (space wise). I would be just adding a cold water feed and waste (under the floor) and putting the washing machine in. This means you can have the washer on and still use the room, which for many would be more beneficial.

But I'm looking at it from a cost point of view with a view of being a developer and what I can sell to people. The £500 for the sparky and £500 for the builder could be spent much better elsewhere.


This is the bit about the service cut outs where I applied (northern power grid)
northernpowergrid.com/hel…out

read the parts under the diagram

Yes it is possible to move it all to that other wall but Iam sure that the dno will not attempt to bend/move/reroute that paper lead cable with it powered up . The risk of the lead snapping and severing the conductors inside is risky and if it did short out it will go with a hell of a bang , they will probably still want to dig outside and cut cable then bend it/move it/reposition and then rejoin it back up . But while the hole is dug they may want to join a new piece and not mess with that part . It's because it's paper lead that's the problem , it's been there for at least 50 yrs and it will be so difficult to manoeuvre it.
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