I recently had to replace a ring main socket in a part of the house
that was re-wired 20+ years ago by an ex-electricity board inspector.
I was surprised to see that the earth connectors, instead of being
wired into the socket, were twisted together along with a flying earth
and connected to the earth connector in the metal box. The flying
earth alone went to the socket. None of the earths were sheathed!
Previously, I would have connected all three earth wires into the
socket. However, this unexpected configuration seems less likely to
come adrift because the three-wire collection goes into a fixed
connector and only a single wire goes to the socket. The three-wire
collection only needs disturbing if re-wiring is needed, not whenever
a socket is replaced.
(I recently bought a socket from Wickes; it had a square hole for the
earths and I had difficulty getting three thin earths to stay in. I
dislike bending the ends as they fall off if you have to straighten
Apart from the sheathing, is the unexpected configuration: legal, less
safe, more safe?
- posted 12 years ago