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COMMON MISTAKES IN

ELECTRICAL WIRING
PRACTICE
BY : ENG D G RIENZIE FERNANDO
STANDARDS ADOPTED IN SRI LANKA

• Sri Lanka Adopts BS 7671 as the wiring regulations


• Further for Equipment IEC and BS and also SLS standards
• As there are no strict regulations on equipment
standards various substandard equipment are imported
and sold.
• Three sub committees are working on the subject
“adequacy of electrical safety measures in Sri Lanka”,
First committee is working on Issue of license to
electrician levels
Second studding on adequacy of standards adopted
for equipment
Third on electrical wiring practice and setting up an
electricians hand book for wiring practice.
HOW SAFE IS YOUR ELECTRICAL
INSTALLATION
• To assess, how safe an installation is, safety audits are
carried out and inspection and testing is based on
recommendations stipulated in BS 7671 which is also
called IET Regulations. Similarly it is mandatory that an
electrical installation is inspected and tested and a
report to be provided to supply authority before service
connection is finally connected.
• On inspection of many designed installations, some
aspects recommended in BS 7671 is either violated or
knowing or without paying adequate attention to the
technical design aspects, mistakes are repeatedly
found.
DIVISION TO CIRCUITS

• Section 314 describes the necessity of division to


circuits
• Regulation 314.2 stipulates that, circuits shall be
provided for parts of the installation which need to be
separately controlled in such a way that those circuits
are not affected by the failure of other circuits, and
due account shall be taken of the consequences of
the operation of any single protective device+
• Further regulation 314.3 describes how no of circuits
and number of points in a circuit is decided whereas
the regulation 314.4 describes the electrical separation
of the circuits
COMMON MISTAKES
FOUND IN DIVISION TO CIRCUITS

• It is very frequently found that even luxury houses


(condominiums) wired without dividing to circuits.
• Some times divided to circuits and two (or more)
circuits distributed from one O/C device.
• No proper O/C device and cable coordination
• Mistakes in Radial circuits
• Mistakes in Ring circuits
O/C DEVICE AND CABLE
COORDINATION
As Per Regulation 433.1.1
Ib < In < I2 < 1.45 Iz
• Whereas
• Ib is the design current
• In is the rated (set) current of the O/C device
• I2 is the effective tripping current of the device
• Iz is the permissible current rating of the cable

• Where semi enclosed fuses to BS 3036 is used the


condition In < 0.725 Iz (Regulation 433.1.3)
Cable 1
RADIAL CIRCUITS

• Some conventional radial circuits are described in


this section
These circuits are designed with surface wiring where Iz
is higher
If circuits are enclosed in conduit embedded to
evaluate the Iz has to be considered after applying the
de-rerating factors (rating factors as defined under
schedules 4A and factors given under 4b and 4c)
RADIAL CIRCUIT DESCRIBED IN
APPENDIX 15 OF BS7671

Cable
MISTAKES IN S/O RADIAL CIRCUITS

• It is obvious if the conventional circuits shown in


Appendix 15 of BS 7671 are conditional.
• In many installations the S/O circuits are found with
only 2.5 mm2 cables with what ever the No of S/O s
and whatever the cable lengths that has been
used
• If the given conditions are violated then the care to
be paid to design the circuits as per
recommendations to section 43. (Regulation
433.1.1)
RADIAL CIRCUITS DESIGNED

• Following table summarizes radial circuit


arrangements. At the same time, maximum length
of the circuit is calculated considering a voltage
drop of 1.5%.
Design Load Maximum
MCB considering allowable length
rating Cable size simultaneity factor Maximum Number of of the circuit
(A) (mm2) (A) 13A socket outlets (m)
32 10 26 5 30
20 4 15.6 3 20
16 2.5 15.6 3 12
RING
FINAL
CIRCUITS
WORKMEN SHIP WHEN WIRING THE
RING CIRCUITS
• At each socket outlet while looping the conductors
to continue the ring connection is difficult
On some makes of the 13 A socket outlets two slots
are provided for the connection.
If slot size is sufficient it is a good practice that the
wires are continued without cutting.
Very often hot terminations are found due to poor
connections.
If the wire is discontinued the purpose and design
criteria are lost.
Non conditional ring circuits can be designed if
needed.
SWITCHING AND ISOLATION

• Off load devices should not be used as an emergency switching


device
• On load device should be used for
 Emergency switching

• Off load device is adequate


 for Isolation for maintenance

 At the motor or at motor control center emergency switching is


necessary and if an on load device is provided at the control
gear at easily accessible position it can be used for both
purposes.
Motor control center has a emergency
stop button however with switching off
with emergency stop button the danger of
getting it switched automatically remains
therefore and on load device to be used
at a close proximity
O/C PROTECTION

• Setting too high or too low magnetic setting which


will lead to either longer period of tripping on short
circuit or nuisance tripping.
• Specifying the wrong circuit breaker type for the
application
• Failure to provide spacing in the distribution board
array in design
SETTING OF
O/C DEVICE
• Setting should be less
than prospective short
circuit level of the
location and should be
more than the maximum
Starting Currents or the
inrush currents.
EARTHING AND EARTH FAULT
PROTECTION
• Best earthing practice is violated often
• When the individual CTs are used per phase and
vector addition of phase currents and neutral
current is used for earth fault relay, and when no
proper compatibility is ensured the ELR will never
respond to an earth fault.
SPECIFIED EARTHING CONDUCTORS
AND EARTH ELECTRODES
The circuit protective conductors

The main bonding conductors

Functional earthing conductors (if


required)

Lightning protection system


bonding conductor (If any)
RECOMMENDED EARTHING

• This arrangement is
not acceptable
• This leads to
circulating currents
in abnormal
conditions
Communication WHEN A SERIES OF
Panels PROTECTION,
COMMUNICATIONS
OR CONTROLS
PANELS TO BE
EARTHED.

Earth Bar

Earth Cable
Cable Trench
Communication
Panels

iL iL iL
Earth Bar

L L L
Earth Cable
Cable Trench
EARTH FAULT PROTECTION

• Loop impedance – Z e
• Earth Fault current – If
• Safe Tripping value or setting of ELR or the residual
operating current of the E/F device – IΔn
For a TT System RA x I Δn ≤ 50 V
For a TN System ZA x Ia ≤ 230 V
ELR installation
Say of a TT system Loop Resistance is 25 ohms and
therefore
I Δn= 50 /25 = 2 A and say the 4 CTs are used and
Vector Addition of the 4 CTs feeds to EFR
Say the CT Ratio is 1500/5

I = 2 A * 5/1500

= 0.006 A = 6 mA

If EFR setting range is 30 mA


to 300 A
This set up will never trip

Solution for this is to use ELR with


Co-Balance Current Transformer
and which has the in out ratio of
1:1
ONE OF THE CASES IN COLOMBO

CT ratio- 2500:5
EFR operating Current Set-
0.1A(100mA)
Ze = 20ohm
INSTALLATION OF SURGE PROTECTIVE
MOV AT THE ORIGIN
If the system is TT
Say 25 Ωs fault loop resistance

The Maximum Earth fault


current is 230/ 25 = 9.2 A

The safe trip setting 50/25 = 2 A

The OC device will never trip

The fault will be cleared on the


upstream ELR at the origin of
the installation
COLOUR CODE, DISPLAY OF LABELS
AND NOTICES
COMMON MISTAKES
IN COLOUR CODE

• Use of Black as Neutral


• Use of Green as Protective conductor
• Use of one colour for phase conductors without
marking

• No labeling or notices are seen at all in installations


except for few.
BEYOND REGULATIONS

• Circuit Breaker Selections


• Problems in earthing arrangements can be different
to each other
• Equipotential bonding can be detrimental in some
cases
Duty Cycles
BREAKER AND CONTACTOR
SELECTION
• Equipment protection

Circulating Currents
And

Potential up rise on grounded


parts
To be considered for a good design of your
earthing
It is found that grounding problems create the
maximum no of failures of equipment in an
installation
EFFECTS OF AIR TERMINAL OF A BUILDING ON
GROUNDING OF THE INSTALLATION
Circulating Current Paths Can Also be
Created due to

• Metal Structures or Masts in the Vicinity

• Other Types of the Metal Objects That may act as


Lightning Arrester
• Transformer HT Lightning Arrester Earthing
If Air Terminal is Connected with the Installation Earth

The Recommended Overall Earth Mesh/Multiple Rod Earth


Resistance Shall be Less than 1 

If Not Connected
Keep the Air Terminal Earth at least 20 m away from the
Installation Earth
Provided that the,
Other Earths are as close as possible with each other

However the Preferable System is to have one ground lead


avoiding the circulating currents.
Earthing Scheme for a
Communication TV, Radio,
Tower
IN A CASE SUPPLY CABLE IS
DISTRIBUTED FROM ELSE WHERE
CONTINUITY OF PROTECTIVE
CONDUCTOR IS ESTABLISHED

IN AN ABNORMAL SITUATION THE


POTENTIAL OF REMOTE EARTH
AND THE POTENTIAL AT THE
LOCATION OF THE SWITCH GEAR
DIFFERS

CASE 1 - IF THE LOCAL EARTH ALSO


CONNECTED TO METAL BODIES
THERE WILL BE CIRCULATING
CURRENTS JEOPARDIZING THE
ELECTRONICS OF THE SYSTEM

CASE 2 - IF THE SWITCH PANE IS INSULATED


FROM LOCAL FLOOR METAL THERE WONT
BE CIRCULATING CURRENTS BUT TWO
DIFFERENT POTENTIALS WILL BE HARMFUL
FOR THIS CASE THE FLOOR SHALL BE
INSULATED AT ARMS STRETCH
• Thank you for you patience !!!!