PAT (Portable Appliance Testing) equipment are essential to everyone. The basic function of these testers is to reduce the amount of risk posed by electrical equipment. By detecting safety problem with appliances, Pat testers reduce the risk of anyone getting electrocuted by them. Manufacturers of Pat Testers also provide Pat Testing Accessories to further advance the versatility of these testers not only in building and construction but also in the everyday equipment used in people’s homes and offices.
Even after knowing their primary function, we still need to examine a few other things; like choosing the right Pat tester given that there are hundreds of Pat testing brands.
For both learning how to Pat test and those who have been doing it for a while, these are essential issues they need to understand about this equipment.
Features of Pat Testers
With upgrades happening every day on this equipment, there are many features that can be found on some and cannot be found on others. It all depends on your needs.
Some testers have a downloadable memory (with flash memory card compatibility), a full QWERTY keyboard, a colour screen, and can be handheld. The professional ones are even built with a risk assessment tool that is used to calculate reassessment periods on appliances. Some allow their testing procedures to be readjusted.
Some run on batteries, while some require electrical charging. The very simple ones use PASS/ FAIL indicators when testing equipment to show if they have passed the safety test, or failed it. Other features of these testers are fuse testing and voltage testing. Once again, the Pat tester you get depends on the area you want to use it in. Some environments need simple testers built with only the socket testing function, while some environments are in need of professional-grade testers that come with IT equipment compatibility and downloadable memories for easier management of information. Here is a little more information on what you should look for when buying a tester.
What to Look for in a Pat Tester
For a tester to keep doing its primary job, it needs to be reliable, easy to use, and affordable. Do not stretch your pocket for an equipment that performs the same as another cheaper equipment. The ease of use applies to beginner users, and for those who have been Pat testing for a while, it still helps to own something not so complicated. An ideal Pat tester needs to be usable in any environment; offices, shops, and homes. This will depend on what kind of office, or home you own. If your equipment is heavy duty, then go for a bigger Pat tester (not necessarily bigger in size, but in functionality). If you plan to use for small amounts of appliances, then make sure you spend less money.
Facts about Pat Testing
There are many myths about pat testers that keep going around. Find out some of the facts below:
Frequency of Testing
- Frequency of Testing
Regulations concerned with electrical equipment sure state that all appliances capable of causing any type of injury should be maintained in a safe condition. This implies that they should be tested and repaired if broken, but the frequency of it all is up to you. Pat testing is not a legal requirement that is required annually; it is a safety precaution that you should undertake for your own protection, however, frequently you choose to do it is entirely up to you.
Testing New Equipment
- Testing New Equipment
New equipment should be safe, but a simple check would not hurt.
Hiring an Electrician for the Test
- Hiring an Electrician for the Test
The level of competency held by the tester should be sensible. In the office, an informed staff member can do the testing, but in high-risk environments, the person conducting the tests needs to be very well trained. This will ensure that the right test equipment is used properly and that the test results presented by this equipment are correctly interested.
Pat testing is not compulsory. Anyone manufacturing or distributing electrical equipment simply needs to maintain them in the right order to prevent danger. If they figure out a way of doing this without using Pat testing equipment, well and good. It is only advisable to use your Pat Tester but it is not something compulsory.