OT: Any ideas??

In my kitchen I have two single sockets below the worktop for a washing machine and dishwasher (or fridge and freezer). Above the worktop are two switced fused spurs which 'isolate' these two sockets, my question is why? The house is a modern build (1992) and these were done by the builders as my 3 neighbours houses have the same thing. I cannot see that it is to isolate the sockets for removal of said appliances as you would unplug them when moving them. Anybody got a clue as I haven't?
TIA
John
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
In an earlier contribution to this discussion,

It may, under some circumstances, be possible to carry out maintenance work on the appliances in situ - so that you couldn't get at the plugs but may still need to isolate them from the mains.
--
Cheers,
Set Square
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

just a thought, and not based on anything in particular, but I would imagine that they are there to quickly isolate the equipment in the event of a fault developing. If my washing machine decided to go up in smoke I wouldn't want to have to pull it from under the work surface to turn it off. OK I could go to the CU but that would take longer than operating the switch above it. As I say just a thought I'm sure someone more knowledgeable will come along with a better answer.
--
-- Bill

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

The switches are used to power down the sockets in case a fault occurs and you get electrocuted if you touch the appliance casings when trying to move them out. They also tell you the appliance is powered up correctly if the machine doesn't switch on when it should. There are a lot more reasons why it is handy to have remotely switched hidden sockets, and I won't bore you with any more just now.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Since this implies an earth coming off, is it a good idea to introduce more connections on the ring main if you think this a likely scenario?
--
*The more I learn about women, the more I love my car

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@argonet.co.uk London SW 12
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I think you will probably find it is a requirement
Something along the lines of a local *Accessible* form of isolation
Sparks...
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

According to the dishwasher instructions (yes folks, I actually *read the manual*. Horrors!) they recommend unplugging the bloody thing all the time it's not in use?! I'm pretty sure the washer destructions said that too. -- cheers,
witchy/binarydinosaurs
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I've seen that on a clock radio instructions.
--
*Before they invented drawing boards, what did they go back to?

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@argonet.co.uk London SW 12
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Tue, 16 Dec 2003 11:11:14 +0000 (GMT), Dave Plowman

Heh - 'remember to unplug the clock before you leave the house' -- cheers,
witchy/binarydinosaurs
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I'd agree the socket should be accessible.
--
*Don't worry; it only seems kinky the first time.*

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@argonet.co.uk London SW 12
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
John wrote:

Some people like to be able to turn the things off.... It might also be handy any time you need to stop an appliance in an emergency and are not going to be able to pull the thing forward to unplug it. Imaging for example that your tumble driver suddenly started emitting smoke and/or flames!
--
Cheers,

John.

/=================================================================\
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Lets say a 97 year old granny has your house. Next thing she knows there is smoke coming out of the dishwasher / washing machine / fridge / freezer. So she grabs hold of the impending fireball, pulls it out crawls in behind and turns it off.
Or just turns off the fused spur
She could climb up the step ladder in the garage, with her car in it, and turn off the mains switch. But she wouldn't want to have to reset the clock on the bedside alarm, cooker, video and microwave. Then have no electricity for 4 days until an engineer came out and fixed the appliance. Presuming of course she was to frail to pull a washing machine full of water out from under the worktop
One possibility as to why they fit them
David
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Why does everyone insist the only alternative to an FCU etc is a socket *behind* the appliance, requiring it to be removed for access?

That's of course assuming she knows what it's for. Rather unlikely. She'll be used to unplugging things, though.

You are, of course, assuming the switch on the washing machine itself has failed *as well*. Unlikely, IMHO.

--
*Why do they put Braille on the drive-through bank machines?

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@argonet.co.uk London SW 12
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Ehh? surely the point here is there the FCU was there because the socket was behind the machine - an alternative would have been to have the socket elsewhere and accessible (such as a cupboard) surely.
I have had the machines plugged into sockets inside a cupboard, personally I prefer the above the worktop technique.
I find it useful to have a remote switch on the dishwasher socket as I can turn it off so my little daughter then loses interest in pressing the buttons on the front when the lights don't come on.
--
Chris French, Leeds

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

My dishwasher bay has an isolating switch above the worktop. Recently a "repair" I did to the dishwasher became undone, sprinking small amounts of water around the guts of the machine. The ring circuit RCD didn't like this and promptly tripped out (fair dues).
So all I did for the short term was to turn off the isolator switch then reset the RCD and the rest of the house became happy again (all apart from the eldest who told me in no uncertain terms how far he had got in the computer game before the power went off :-)
Now imagine the same scenario without the isolator: try and haul out a dishwasher full of crockery and cutlery and water so that you can get to the socket at the back of it...
So, in my books an isolator is pretty damn useful for such appliances.
Mungo
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Related Threads

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.