The way your appliances are tested when having an electrical PAT test will vary depending on the class of the appliance. There are two types of classes that an appliance can be, these are Class I or Class II.
Before your electrical PAT test is carried out, the tester will look at the rating plate of the appliance to identify its Class, Watts & Voltage. If during your electrical PAT test no rating plate is found on the appliance, the appliance will be disposed of.
The Class of an appliance can be identified by a symbol on the rating plate. A Class II appliance will have a double box symbol, whereas a Class I appliance will not display any symbol. It is important for this to be checked before an electrical PAT test.
Class I appliances tend to have large areas of exposed metal for example an electrical fire or a PC. An electrical PAT test for any Class I appliance with exposed metal is highly important because the metal is connected to the earth pin of the mains plug. However in some cases Class I appliances do not have any metal on the outside but like any other appliance an electrical PAT test will still need to be performed.
Class II appliances have two layers of insulation to protect anyone using it from electric shock. Class II appliances are items such as hand held drills or hairdryers.
Some appliances are more prone to danger than others and will require an electrical PAT test more frequently than others. Although all portable appliances are included in an electrical PAT test, testing can be categorised into different types based on how easy it is to move the appliance.
The standard categories for an electrical PAT test are:
When having an electrical PAT test these categories determine how dangerous the appliance can be. Stationary appliances will not be moved, which means that the cable is less likely to be damaged and pose danger. However, hand-held equipment is likely to be damaged more easily because it is more likely to be dropped or the cable could be constantly rubbed against something, causing it to fail an electrical PAT test.
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