How Often Should My Business Be Tested and Tagged?
Having the electrical appliances at your workplace tested and tagged is an important step in ensuring office safety, but how often do appliances need to be formally checked?
Checking and testing your electrical appliances with a regular test and tag service should be an important part of the safety processes in your business. How often your business needs to be tested and tagged depends on the type of business you operate. The qualified technician who conducts your test and tag service will be able to advise on the exact schedule recommended for your business. But here are a few broad guidelines.
What is test and tag?
Test and tag is the name given to the electrical compliance testing of portable electrical appliances. It’s so called because after the appliance is tested, it is tagged with a label showing that it has passed the electrical safety tests. Ensuring your appliances are regularly tested and tagged helps your business meet its OH&S and WH&S compliance requirements and means that you know all the electrical equipment in your business is working as it should.
Test and tag is mandated for some businesses
If your business is what’s known as a ‘hostile operating environment’ where the electrical equipment or flexible equipment cords can be easily damaged during normal operations, then testing and tagging is critically important. Because of this, testing and tagging is mandated for some industries including construction, demolition and mining. In these industries, electrical equipment must be tested and certified every three months. The technician who conducts the tests will use different colour tags depending on the time of year, so a piece of equipment with an expired tag is easy to identify. Your test and tag technician will be able to advise if your business is in an industry with mandated test and tag requirements.
Test and tag is good practice
In other businesses, getting your electrical equipment regularly tested and tagged is good practice. It’s your responsibility as a business owner to provide a safe environment for your staff and visitors to your premises. If anyone is injured at your business because of faulty electrical equipment, then you could be liable. Ensuring that you have regular test and tag servicing in place means that you and those who attend your business know that all your equipment is in safe, working order – all the time.
The experts will let you know
When a test and tag service is conducted at your business, all your electrical portable Appliance Testing will be tagged with labels which show when the item was tested and by whom, and the due date for the next test. So, after employing your first test and tag services, you’ll never be in doubt about when the next tests are due.
Which appliances need to be tested and tagged?
All portable electrical appliances should be tested and tagged as part of a test and tag service. This includes items used for work purposes such as computers, printers, drills and hairdryers. But it also includes other electrical appliances found in a workplace such as kettles, microwaves and refrigerators. And if any of your team bring in their own electrical appliances such as laptops or phone chargers, these should be tagged and tested too. It’s all part of creating a safe workplace for everyone.
Is test and tag the only electrical compliance testing I need?
Again, your qualified technician will be able to advise after assessing the needs of your business. But you should be aware that ‘test and tag’ is not the only type of electrical testing. Other testing that you may want to consider includes RCD or safety switch testing and Fault Loop testing. Fault Loop testing is when your electrical installations and power points are tested to avoid electric shock and injury. It’s an important test to ensure that the electrical wiring in your building is as safe as possible. When choosing your PAT testing specialist, it’s a good idea to see if they can also conduct fault loop testing.
How do I find a test and tag expert?
Technicians who perform test and tag checks need to be qualified to conduct tests under Australian Standard AS/NZS 3760 which outlines the standards that electrical appliances need to meet, how frequently the test and tag process should be undertaken and who can test and tag.
It’s best to look for a specialist who is experienced in regularly conducting test and tag checks as they know exactly what issues to look for and are well versed in the procedures they need to follow.
Jim’s Test & Tag offers a complete test and tag service conducted by skilled professionals who undergo regular and continuous training. Because they’re specialists in what they do, they’re always fully briefed on the latest requirements and techniques to protect your business. With over 150 franchisees across Australia, there’s bound to be a qualified technician near you.