If you are installing a pool or spa this summer, there are strict safety measures related to outdoor pool and spa wiring so it’s important to engage a qualified pool electrician at the planning stage of the project.
The electrician will liaise with the manufacturer regarding specific electrical wiring required for pools and ascertain whether existing equipment on the property needs to be relocated so as not to compromise the safety of the pool area.
Here are the most important things an electrician will check before your job goes ahead:
Water and electricity do not mix, and pools and spas obviously have a multitude of equipment that is reliant on electricity, including circulating pumps and cleaning equipment. If a fault occurs in these motors, an electric shock can occur and lead to serious injury or in worst cases, electrocution.
Down to Earth
It is essential that any exposed conductive (metal) parts or structures within arm’s reach of the pool or spa edge be bonded. All fences, light fittings, pipework and steel reinforcing must be connected to the main earthing conductor associated with each circuit supplying the pool.
If you are building a home but have decided to postpone the pool construction for a later date, discuss this with your electrician now. Early planning means they can prepare the electrical installation to allow for the bonding required when the project proceeds.
On the other hand, if the pool has been in for a while, it is inevitable that furniture, lighting or sheds have moved within the pool area. If the equipotential bond point has been installed correctly, it is no problem to add items and connect them to the same bond point, ensuring the area stays safe.
Switches and Sockets
Only weatherproof switches and sockets with a spring latch cover and socket face that allows a screw-in plug to prevent unplugging should be used in a pool area. These are designed to restrict the entry of water from splashing, hosing or flooding. Your electrician will be versed on compliance and advise on the best and legal installation locations for optimum protection from water.
Timing is Everything
Energy efficiency requirements stipulate a mandatory timer for pump and filter systems and while this is on most reputable installers’ checklist, you may only have an on/off switch. This relies on the homeowner remembering to turn the pump off. In the real world, the pump can end up running all day, a mistake that will show up on your next bill.