The Benefits of Commercial Electrical Rewiring
Nearly every commercial building in the country has an electrical wiring installation. Even very old and historic buildings will have been wired up in the past for lighting, at least. However, leaving old wiring in situ for decade after decade can be problematic. Depending on the quality of the original installation and whether any accidental damage has occurred to it since it was first fitted, you can expect electrical wiring to last between 25 and 30 years. Emphatically, this figure comes down considerably in harsher working environments, such as factories, or when wiring is – at least, in part – run on the outside of a building through armoured cable.
Consequently, you should have your commercial premises inspected frequently to make sure that the wiring is fit for purpose. For most commercial premises, a check-up every five years is the norm but you might want to do it more frequently if you know that your wiring has already been in place for a decade or so. In the case of industrial premises where wiring can deteriorate quicker, an inspection every three years will be expected. If any of your wiring is found to be sub-standard, then it should be replaced.
That said, when one part of a wiring installation requires a repair, it can often be more cost-effective to replace the lot. This way, all of the potential disruption to your business processes will be dealt with in one go. Moreover, a complete rewiring job is often less costly than dealing with minor issues on a piecemeal basis as and when they occur. In addition to offering better value for money than patching up an old wiring installation, owners of commercial premises can expect the following other benefits of procuring a rewiring fit-out.
Lower Heating and Lighting Expenditure
To begin with, old wires run less efficiently than new wiring. The copper strands that form the internal structure of electrical wiring are usually in good condition even after they’ve been in almost constant use for decades but where they’ve been cut and rejoined or where wiring has been forced around tight corners, for example, the losses you will experience for your electrical distribution system will build up. Connectors at power outlets and even older-style fuse boxes all add to the inefficiencies which, when added together, can affect your bottom line over time. Since electricity consumption is a considerable overhead for many enterprises, having a more efficient wiring installation is a good way to keep your expenditure down.
Ensure Your Premises Are Compliant
Electrical safety certification shows that you run a responsible business that should be taken seriously. The wiring in all business premises should conform to BS 7671. Although there is no specific legal obligation to meet this threshold, wiring that is found to be dangerous could lead to a non-compliance order being sought by a local council official in your area. Therefore, many business owners will commission an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) for their commercial premises to demonstrate that they have taken reasonable steps in terms of electrical safety. If your wiring installation doesn’t pass such standards, then it really ought to be replaced without delay or you could face potential court action.
Employee Health and Safety
Of course, ensuring wiring in a commercial setting is compliant isn’t just a question of ticking a box for the regulatory authorities. What really lies behind regulatory compliance is the desire to keep everyone at your premises safe. In the main, rewiring an old installation will be about keeping employees safe from the possible outcomes of an electrical fire or from arcing sockets that could injure them through an electrical shock. However, it is not just your workforce that you will keep safe by investing in a new wiring installation. Your neighbours will also be safeguarded from potential blazes if you take measures to keep your building safely wired, too. In addition, visitors to your premises, such as clients and sub-contractors, will be able to enjoy a safe environment. Just consider what might happen if a visitor or an employee were to sue you if they were to be injured from wiring that was subsequently found to be faulty. In this sense, it simply isn’t worth the risk of skimping on rewiring.
Improve Business Reputation
When people work at business premises that aren’t well maintained, it can have a negative impact on brand reputation. This is the case whether you have an office with several hundred workers or operate a retail outlet with just a couple of employees. Of course, maintaining your premises’ wiring is just a part of your overall business reputation but it is a significant one. When people use electrical outlets that have yellowed or sit underneath strip lighting that flickers, they can rightly feel undervalued by their employer. In turn, this can lead to higher rates of staff turnover, something that ends up feeding your recruitment and retention costs. On the other hand, a newly rewired workplace shows your workers and clients that you are committed to ongoing investment in the working environment.
Streamline Processes for Greater Productivity
According to Goldfinch Electrical Services, an NICEIC-approved commercial electrical installer based in London, many businesses are able to operate more productively following a complete rewire. Doing so means that they might be able to reorganise their layout such that workstations can be set up in a more productive manner with sufficient power outlets for everyone. Running extension cables from one side of the room to another can cause workflow problems as well as trip hazards. As such, rewiring an office or workshop is a good time to think about maximising the potential of your space with wiring and lighting that supports more efficient workflows.
Rationalise Your Electrical and Network Installations
Finally, many business owners want two things when they rewire their commercial premises, nowadays, not just one. Yes, rewiring your power distribution system is important for safety, compliance and workflows but it is also the perfect time to update and rationalise your local area network wiring, too. Most workplaces have a combination of Wi-Fi and Ethernet networks nowadays. By adding more physical Ethernet outlets with a beefed-up wiring installation that runs in tandem with your electrical installation, you can place your Wi-Fi under less stress, thereby speeding up data communications at a stroke.