Electrical appliances provided by a landlord as part of a tenancy must be maintained in a safe condition that doesn’t harm the tenant. If this is not done, the landlord may be liable for negligence. Landlords should, however, ensure that they do this according to the law. In this regard, landlords should always test portable appliances for best practice unless they are specifically required to do so as part of a license condition.
An item that is portable is usually unplugged from a power source and can be moved. An appliance can be as small as a kettle or as large as a free-standing refrigerator, so it does not have to be light enough to be picked up by hand.
Testing portable appliances can be required by a local authority?
There must be a condition in the selective, mandatory, or additional licence that requires that portable appliances and furniture are regularly tested for safety, along with a declaration of their safety.
Do I need an electrician?
In most cases, no. In most cases, a landlord’s visual inspection would suffice to detect any potential danger. An inspection should be performed by a qualified person if an appliance is particularly dangerous to check or the landlord does not feel comfortable assessing it. At lofti we allow you to have access to a wide range of contractors who are pre-vetted and qualified electricians. These contractors can be accessed free of charge and are able to do all the correct checks for you.
What should I look for in PAT?
Visual inspections should include the following things:
- Leads that have frayed, been cut, or have been heavily scuffed
- The bending of the pins on the plug is an example of the damage
- Tape is applied to the lead to join leads together
- Visible wires where the lead joins the plug
- Loose parts or screws
- Signs of overheating, such as burn marks or staining on the plug
- Equipment being stored in dusty or wet environments
- Cables trapped under furniture or in floor boxes
Aside from this, it is also important to check whether the appliance has been used according to manufacturer instructions, whether it is suited to your needs, and whether any problems have been reported.
Nevertheless, if you have the equipment and feel knowledgeable enough, you can check the appliances yourself if you have the equipment.
If you would like more information on how to look after the portable electrical equipment you can find this at https://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/books/hsg107.htm
For your convenience will find a downloadable PDF provided by the UK Gov here
At Lofti we allow all our landlords to upload electrical safety certificates onto the system allowing you to always be up to date and making sure all your portable electrical devices are safe and do not pose a risk to any of your tenants.
Since the rules around PAT testing for landlords are confusing in this article, we’ve put together the useful pieces of information you need to know, including what a PAT test is, what appliances it covers, what you should look for when it comes to PAT for electrical appliances.