In: PAT Testing

How is PAT testing done? PAT testing is completed by a qualified PAT tester or a trained PAT tester and there are several procedures involved in PAT testing.

One way of how to do PAT testing is through visual inspections where the PAT tester visually scrutinizes the appliance, in particular the plug and cables are tested for any clear signs of hazard. This is an affective method on how to do PAT testing because according to the HSE this approach to PAT testing can find more than 90% of faults, thus, it is a vital mechanism for the maintenance of appliances.

An additional approach of how to do PAT testing is through user checks. This procedure is where users are advised on how to avoid any potential danger, for example, a frayed cable or cracked plug. If this is the case then PAT testers advise that the plug is not to be tampered with.

An added procedure on how to do PAT testing is through combined inspections and PAT testing which is done at periodical intervals to maintain adequacy. During these intervals a formal visual inspection is completed followed by PAT testing. During PAT testing it is essential that the interior of the plug is checked (unless it is moulded or sealed), in this case of PAT testing procedure bad internal wiring or an unsuitable fuse would classify the item as hazardous. The testing that a PAT tester must undergo to declare an item electrically safe is dependant on the class of construction.

In the formal inspection of how to do PAT testing there are certain signs to be aware of:

• Disturbance to the power cable sheath
• Wreckage of the mains plug
• Overheating
• Damage to external casing of the equipment, or loose parts and/or screws

The formal PAT testing procedure should also contain removal of the plug cover and an analysis of:

• The sufficient value fuse being used
• The cord grip has a tight hold of the outer part of the cable
• The Live, Neutral and Earth wires are attached to the correct terminals
• No visible bare wires
• Tight screwing of the terminal screws
• Any signs of internal damage (overheating or entry of liquid, dust or dirt).