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Old Oct 15th 2017, 6:28 pm   #1
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Default Electrical wiring

Hi, we have recently bought a ruined property near Coimbra and will be starting renovations soon. I'm not a qualified electrician but have wired properties in England before and had them certified and would hope to be able to do this in Portugal. Is the wiring system the same as in England? I know they have 2 pin sockets rather than 3 but the voltage is the same. Has anyone on this forum done this and have any advice? Thanks.
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Old Oct 15th 2017, 6:49 pm   #2
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Default Re: Electrical wiring

The UK uses the Ring Circuit wiring system whereas Portugal (as most of Europe) does not.

Moreover the law is quite clear: only certified electricians (by the Portuguese regulator) can do the wiring. Foreigner certifications have to be validated by the Portuguese regulator which would require Portuguese language requirements, and additional training to the PT wiring system.

After a new home has been wired, in order to have the habitation licence, the local electricity company will require that the electrician that performed the wiring is certified, and they will also look at the wiring itself.

Insurance liability will only be valid if these steps are followed.

We also have the 3 pine system here, it is just that the ground connection is not a pine that protrudes, is at the surface of the connector
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Last edited by Troia; Oct 15th 2017 at 6:52 pm.
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Old Oct 15th 2017, 9:39 pm   #3
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Default Re: Electrical wiring

Thank you that's helpful.
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Old Oct 15th 2017, 11:31 pm   #4
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Default Re: Electrical wiring

Also remember that as opposed to the UK where wiring is up down in Portugal it is a bit more haphazard.
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Old Oct 15th 2017, 11:44 pm   #5
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Default Re: Electrical wiring

The wiring system in the UK is the ring system. In Portugal and the rest of Europe is the Radial system. ~

Radial system has been proven to have significant advantages.
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Old Oct 16th 2017, 7:24 am   #6
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Default Re: Electrical wiring

Quote:
Originally Posted by Troia View Post
The wiring system in the UK is the ring system. In Portugal and the rest of Europe is the Radial system. ~

Radial system has been proven to have significant advantages.
Such as?
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Old Oct 16th 2017, 9:05 am   #7
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Default Re: Electrical wiring

Thanks again all. Does anyone know where can i have a look at this radial wiring diagram?
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Old Oct 16th 2017, 10:29 am   #8
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Default Re: Electrical wiring

Theres a highly illegal and subversive book, the readers digest home repairs manual. It was produced pre political correctness and attempts to remove diy by the people who make money out of it. It describes and has great drawings showing loads of systems like uk house wiring - rings and radial, gas installations and water piping. If you can get a second hand copy do, its wonderful...

I particularly like their comment about using the same colour scheme as your original cabling. In the uk its been verboten to do your own wiring for a while, but if its done properly using old scheme colours cabling purchased pre change - nobody can tell how old the wiring is...
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Old Oct 16th 2017, 11:22 am   #9
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Default Re: Electrical wiring

Lol, not sure about the illegal bit but definitely like the subversive part, thanks. Now where can get one of those!
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Old Oct 16th 2017, 2:35 pm   #10
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Default Re: Electrical wiring

From https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ring_circuit

Criticism
The final ring-circuit concept has been criticized in a number of ways compared to radials, and some of these disadvantages could explain the lack of widespread adoption outside the United Kingdom.

Fault conditions are not apparent when in use
Ring circuits may continue to operate without the user being aware of any problem if there are certain types of fault condition or installation errors. This gives both robustness against failure and a potential for danger [3][4]

Safety tests are complex[edit]
Testing ring circuits may take 5–6 times longer than testing radial circuits.[4] The installation tests required for the safe operation of a ring circuit are substantially more time consuming than those for a radial circuit, and DIY installers or electricians qualified in other countries may not be familiar with them.

Balancing required[edit]
Regulation 433-02-04 of BS 7671 requires that the installed load must be distributed around the ring such that no part of the cable exceeds its capacity. This requirement is difficult to guarantee, and may be largely ignored in practice, as loads are often co-located (e.g., washing machine, tumble dryer, dish washer all next to kitchen sink) at a point not necessarily near the centre of the ring.[4]

Can cause electromagnetic interference[edit]
Ring circuits can occasionally generate unwanted magnetic fields.[citation needed] In a radial circuit, the current flowing in the circuit must return through (almost exactly) the same physical path through which it came, especially if the line and neutral conductors are kept in close proximity of each other and form a twisted pair. This prevents the circuit forming a large magnetic coil (loop antenna), which would otherwise induce a magnetic field at the AC frequency (50 or 60 Hz).

In a ring circuit, if any poor joint causes a high resistance on one branch of the ring, current will be unevenly distributed, possibly overloading the remaining conductor of the ring.
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Old Oct 16th 2017, 2:56 pm   #11
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Default Re: Electrical wiring

Quote:
Originally Posted by uk_grenada View Post
Theres a highly illegal and subversive book, the readers digest home repairs manual. It was produced pre political correctness and attempts to remove diy by the people who make money out of it. It describes and has great drawings showing loads of systems like uk house wiring - rings and radial, gas installations and water piping. If you can get a second hand copy do, its wonderful...

I particularly like their comment about using the same colour scheme as your original cabling. In the uk its been verboten to do your own wiring for a while, but if its done properly using old scheme colours cabling purchased pre change - nobody can tell how old the wiring is...
I recall, as a child, helping my father to build a rabbit hutch from the detailed plans in this book. The main material used was asbestos cement sheet.

Using this book as a wiring guide for a Portuguese house would be a very bad idea.
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Old Oct 16th 2017, 3:46 pm   #12
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Default Re: Electrical wiring

Quote:
Originally Posted by RichardHenshall View Post
I recall, as a child, helping my father to build a rabbit hutch from the detailed plans in this book. The main material used was asbestos cement sheet.

Using this book as a wiring guide for a Portuguese house would be a very bad idea.
White asbestos corrugated sheet is in use all over, cycle sheds and factory roofs are made of it ll over the place. It isn't a problem so long as you don't go machining it. Its the blue and brown stuff thats really nasty, many hospitals used it to lag pipes, I was an IT manager in a victorian one that had tunnels carrying steam heating cabling etc, but the asbestos was not removable... As a result they were sealed and when we needed to add to the wide area network, engineer went down in space suits to run cables. The tunnels were really useful - ran for miles between buildings - under playing fields in places.

As to using the book as a cabling guide, you can't say but I have looked into it. I have a current [I think its called part 11] qualified friend who is actually an ex trainer of plumbers and electricians... With the exception of colours of some cables, plus physical shielding of new cabling under plaster it still meets the current regs, and its wonderfully well explained / written / illustrated, so I would use it to carefully - to assist, just by all means have everything tested and looked at afterwards and if possible have the design checked.
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Old Oct 16th 2017, 5:22 pm   #13
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Default Re: Electrical wiring

Quote:
Originally Posted by uk_grenada View Post
... it still meets the current regs ...


I know that some Reader's Digest books were actually quite good but wiring standards in Portugal now are not the same as the UK 45 years ago and it's not just the colours of the cables.

I realise now that I was referring to plans in The Reader's Digest Complete Do-It-Yourself Manual from a few years earlier (1969). The Repair Manual (1972) is much more current.
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Old Oct 16th 2017, 5:27 pm   #14
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Default Re: Electrical wiring

How about this...https://www.amazon.co.uk/Wiring-Ligh.../dp/027644079X
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Old Oct 16th 2017, 5:42 pm   #15
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Default Re: Electrical wiring

That's certainly more recent and probably useful for understanding the existing wiring in a huge number of UK properties (and maybe in Grenada).

However, it's still not relevant as a wiring guide for Portugal now, which broadly follows the German system, regardless of the competence and/or qualifications of the person doing the work. See here.
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