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New electrical regulations may for Victoria AS3000:2018

Hi Everyone,


As of around July 1st this year a new electrical standards book was released and they may affect you. At this point it does not have to be fully adhered to until January 1st 2019, Instead Energy Safe Victoria has given a 6 month period in which both the 2011 and 2018 regulations can be adhered to.


What do the new regs mean for my customers?

There is a myriad of new changes and amendments and to be honest at this point without you being an electrician they’re not worth mentioning. They are details that are very important but likely to not be helpful for you. However the big talking point is that:

All sub circuits up to and including 32amps will now need to be on a safety switch. So if you have a circuit altered or installed it will now need to be on a safety switch. The reason this is a big change is because it now means items such as ovens, hot water services, ranges, hot plates, ovens and air conditioners need to be on safety switch. This will add cost to switchboard upgrades and instals. It also states that no matter the amperage if the instal in in a hazardous area it will need to be on a safety switch.

They also made a note that all safety switches now need to be non polarity sensitive as there was a few fatalities recently due to polarity sensitive safety switches. So make sure your sparky is using approved safety switches for VIC.

So its a big step forward for all our safety. That i give a big thumbs up too.





Save electricity: Using Timers on appliances

Have you got a SMART METER? chances are that you will now have multiple tariffs. Which in most cases will consist of PEAK, OFF PEAK & SHOULDER and a winter or summer setting.

PEAK: When demand of the domestic grid is the highest usually between 3pm and 9pm. Resulting in a hight tarriff rate.

OFF PEAK: When domestic demand is least, usually between 10pm and 7am

SHOULDER: All other times


So a quick hint is to utilise timers or buy appliances with built in off/on timers. A few good examples of why to use timers are:

– if you must use a dryer then set it to come on after 10pm thus it will run in OFF PEAK

– Same with washing machines, dish washers, bread makers, slow cookers etc….

– items that don’t need you constant attention.


Obviously don’t let items that can cause fire go unattended and in the case of the dryer ensure the lint collector is always empty. I guess check all smoke alarms are operble too.


Hopefully this has been helpful




Cheap but second rate electrical parts

We all want the best price & its only human to seek it. However we all need to remember that age old rule that we all know “you get what you pay for”. I suggest you look for value for money, so not necessarily the cheapest price but the one in which you feel you are getting the most bang for your buck.

The reason I am mentioning this obvious rule is because the electrical industry is becoming flooded with in my opinion, second rate components. Yes you can now find a power point for under $3 but I stress to you that if you pick up a Clipsal brand and a cheap brand in each hand you will feel the difference in quality straight away.

A new hardware store recently opened up near me, a hardware that is a direct competitor to the big one. I went there one week after its grand opening. I went straight to their electrical section and was amazed at the prices, so low!!! However I started to play with all the display models and I kid you not, nearly every single switch mechanism had become defective, either loose or completely missing. For this to happen after a week was simply alarming. If these were installed in your house I could say that in my opinion they’d be very dangerous.

Another example is that a new importer started to bring single pole safety switches into the country. They went on sale by the thousands. Only problem is, they nowhere near met Australian standards. Some even had the potential of catching fire if installed in multiples. In these instances the customer wouldn’t even know as the electrician probably supplied them. (these safety switches were directed for sale towards electricians, not the general public). So a lot of electrician were not even aware of the dangers.

Brands that have a reputation for quality will usually not want to harm their brand by using inferior quality components. Their products are properly researched and designed.


Please always ensure your electrician is using quality products it will SAVE YOU MONEY in the long run.


Thanks for reading




Making my own lighting

Hi Everyone,


Over the years I must have put several thousand lights in hundreds of situations. I have installed lights from a basic batten holder to a grand chandelier. A lot of lighting is functional and there to serve a purpose, usually to aid us in completing a task, i.e down lights, fluorescent tube lighting, but occasionally I get asked to put in a feature light and this always brings me excitement. I like that I can assist in someone creating their design dreams. Over the years however I have realised that many feature lights are lacking in personality, that they are becoming repetitious in design. I love lighting that is a talking point in a room, interesting in its deliverance of light and creative in its design. So lately i have been experimenting on my own houses. I have used plumbing products such as clean air conditioning copper pipe, as it can shape cable in any way. I recently started utilising the discarded floor stumps from my house when it was re-stumped. Its a beautiful red gum with 60 years of age. I like to use creative ways of switching and fancy cables such as cotton covered or springy cable. I’m also pretty excited about soon developing some fiberglass skills to mould some really creative shapes. Oh ant one off table lamps or floor lamps are on the way too.

Any way just wanted to share some of my passion for creative lighting.



Keith Powell

LED’s affecting television

A few weeks ago whilst working at a good mates mothers house. I had a strange occurence. Trying to do the right thing, I advised the customer to get LED downlight replacement globes to save money and power. The customer preffered not to spend big dollars on name brand LED’s so I reffered them to who I thought was a reputable local LED dealer.

The dealer supplied my customer with replacement LED’s to suit their existing halogen transformers. All was fine, we installed them and they looked and perfomed fantastically. The twist was that when the television was on and then the new LED globes were turned on the television lost all reception. 

I thought it could be that the aerial cable was running to close to the aerial cable, but I checked and it did not. So I did some research and found that some cheaper LED globes do not have the correct circuitry inside the globe and actually send a interfering signal back throught the power cables and ultimately into the television.

It seems from my research that atm there is not enough regulations for LED imports. So beware, I now only recommend some trusted brands that I have had no issues with.

I hope this has been informative, I know it was a learning experience for me.


KEith the SPARKY

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