Author Topic: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods  (Read 9811 times)

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Offline daveatol

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Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« on: July 21, 2015, 10:02:02 am »
There are a few videos on eevblog about fixing up buggered caps on power supply boards of LCD and plasma displays. Anything connected to the mains has to be signed off by a sparky (I thought), and if you change the PSU HV input bulk cap(s), you're kinda fiddling with the part connected to the mains.

Does anyone know if is it legal to do your own repairs of electronic goods in Australia?
 

Offline ruffy91

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #1 on: July 21, 2015, 10:18:14 am »
I don't know how it's in australia but in switzerland you can do anything you want on your side of the mains outlet. Everything behind the outlet and the outlet itself can only be touched by a licensed electrician. I thought it's like this in every country (except some differences from country to country with fix installed household appliances like refrigerators etc.).
 

Offline daveatol

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #2 on: July 21, 2015, 10:26:16 am »
That's a pretty good deal n switzerland - as long as ppl don't make dangerous equipment, or make equipment dangerous.

I found that in Queensland, it's illegal to replace even low-voltage components in electrical equipment (unless someone without electrical expertise could do it safely, e.g. replacing a fuse)(http://www.legislation.qld.gov.au/LEGISLTN/CURRENT/E/ElectricalSA02.pdf). I guess you could argue that someone without expertise could solder safely (though I think you'd lose).
 

Offline ozwolf

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #3 on: July 21, 2015, 10:35:20 am »
If you repair your own item and worried about its safety, why not take it to be "tested & tagged"?

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Offline Deathwish

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #4 on: July 21, 2015, 10:41:00 am »
Cant stand health and safety nuts myself, if I wanna bump myself of ( NO you can not put a back order in ) I will do so at my own choosing.

If I play with the mains that would affect other householders that is a different thing. Health and safety nuts are destroying the UK.

Actually I think the only time a ticket should be needed on personal mains stuff is if it is sold on to others after a repair. Maybe ...
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Offline ElectroIrradiator

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #5 on: July 21, 2015, 10:44:06 am »
I don't know how it's in australia but in switzerland you can do anything you want on your side of the mains outlet. Everything behind the outlet and the outlet itself can only be touched by a licensed electrician. I thought it's like this in every country (except some differences from country to country with fix installed household appliances like refrigerators etc.).

Same thing in Denmark. The fine print here is that you are supposed to know what you are doing (which is not the same as saying you *got* to have an appropriate certification), and you are responsible for any damage resulting from a bodged repair job. Same as in everything else that you do, really.
 

Online blueskull

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #6 on: July 21, 2015, 10:44:36 am »
Law? What law? Russian kids short out 500kV transmission lines and are still fine.
 

Offline ozwolf

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #7 on: July 21, 2015, 11:10:27 am »
That's a pretty good deal n switzerland - as long as ppl don't make dangerous equipment, or make equipment dangerous.

I found that in Queensland, it's illegal to replace even low-voltage components in electrical equipment (unless someone without electrical expertise could do it safely, e.g. replacing a fuse)(http://www.legislation.qld.gov.au/LEGISLTN/CURRENT/E/ElectricalSA02.pdf). I guess you could argue that someone without expertise could solder safely (though I think you'd lose).

Can you quote which section of the regulation you posted states that?  I did find this on page 40 - section 37

"Duty of repairer of electrical equipment or electrical installation
(1) This section applies to a person (the repairer) who repairs electrical equipment or an electrical installation.
(2) The repairer must ensure that—
(a) the way the electrical equipment or installation is repaired is electrically safe; and
(b) the processes followed for repairing the electrical equipment or installation ensure that, when repaired, it will be electrically safe; and
(c) the electrical equipment or installation, when repaired, is electrically safe.
(3) Without limiting subsection (1), the duty includes ensuring that the electrical equipment or installation, when repaired, is
tested and examined to ensure it is electrically safe."

So, you originally asked if DIY repair legal.  I think so, as long as you ensure the repair is safe.  Therefore get it tested and tagged to ensure safety for the rest of your family.

Ozwolf


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Offline daveatol

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #8 on: July 21, 2015, 11:16:36 am »
If you repair your own item and worried about its safety, why not take it to be "tested & tagged"?
That's just for testing isolation, not if my repair job will result in a huge fireball.
Cant stand health and safety nuts myself, if I wanna bump myself of ( NO you can not put a back order in ) I will do so at my own choosing.

If I play with the mains that would affect other householders that is a different thing. Health and safety nuts are destroying the UK.

Actually I think the only time a ticket should be needed on personal mains stuff is if it is sold on to others after a repair. Maybe ...
There are many excessive regulations in Australia as well, although you don't need certification to get your kids to install roof insulation and shoot staples through mains cables.

Same thing in Denmark. The fine print here is that you are supposed to know what you are doing (which is not the same as saying you *got* to have an appropriate certification), and you are responsible for any damage resulting from a bodged repair job. Same as in everything else that you do, really.
That sounds pretty reasonable to me.

Law? What law? Russian kids short out 500kV transmission lines and are still fine.
They build kids tougher in Russia though.


 

Offline ozwolf

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #9 on: July 21, 2015, 11:38:02 am »
Test and tag is NOT just for isolation.

Refer to AS/NZS 3760 - In-service inspection and testing of electrical equipment.

I'm currently reading "Best Practices in Testing & Tagging of Electrical Equipment to AS/NZS 3760" by Frank Zahra & Damien Virieux in an attempt to decide if I should start a business in this field.

I'm only commenting on DIY repair as that was your first question.  For me, DIY repair backed up by Test & Tag is sufficient.  However, repair for profit is a different kettle of fish.  You clearly need certification to do that.

Ozwolf
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Offline daveatol

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #10 on: July 21, 2015, 11:44:28 am »
Can you quote which section of the regulation you posted states that?  I did find this on page 40 - section 37
Page 59, section 55 states
Quote
A person must not perform or supervise electrical work
unless—
(a) the person is the holder of an electrical work licence in
force under this Act; and
(b) the licence authorises the person to perform the work
And electrical work is defined on page 24, section 18.

Test and tag is NOT just for isolation.
Ok. I've only seen it done on brand-new power cords and boards at work.

And from https://www.worksafe.qld.gov.au/licensing-and-registrations/electrical-licences/electrical-worker-licences/electrical-work-licencepermit-other-than-apprentice
Quote
It is illegal to perform electrical work without a licence or permit in Queensland.
« Last Edit: July 21, 2015, 11:46:32 am by daveatol »
 

Offline Deathwish

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #11 on: July 21, 2015, 11:53:20 am »
I would try the argument that electrical work is not the same as Electronic work, I wouldn't expect a guy who does household rewiring to be neccesarily capable of repairing a TV set
Electrons are typically male, always looking for any hole to get into.
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Offline tec5c

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #12 on: July 21, 2015, 12:14:20 pm »
When I used to work in TV repairs we would frequently replace HV caps/other components, more so in the CRT days and all we had for qualifications was related to electronics, i.e., no electrician license or testing and tagging.

AFAIK, this
I don't know how it's in australia but in switzerland you can do anything you want on your side of the mains outlet. Everything behind the outlet and the outlet itself can only be touched by a licensed electrician. I thought it's like this in every country (except some differences from country to country with fix installed household appliances like refrigerators etc.).
applies in Australia too.

Correct me if I am wrong though.
 

Offline sleemanj

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #13 on: July 21, 2015, 12:33:54 pm »
In NZ one can replace fittings, sockets, switches etc in your own home yourself.  You can also move them, but not add new ones (well, you can but you can't connect them into the circuit/switchboard, need the sparky for that).

Repairing your appliances is totally fine, but repairing somebody else's would require test/tag I believe.

Selling 2nd hand electrical devices requires that they be "electrically safe", for private sales this is generally tolerated (but not actually legal really) as the seller's and buyer's decision, for businesses (ie 2nd hand dealers), testing and tagging AS/NZS5761 or disabling and tagging AS/NZ4701 (or AS/NZ3551 for medical stuff) is a requirement (but rather loosely policed).

http://www.ewrb.govt.nz/for-consumers/diywhen-do-i-need-an-electrical-worker/
http://www.trademe.co.nz/help/750/electrical-safety
http://www.legislation.co.nz/regulation/public/2010/0036/latest/DLM2763717.html
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Offline sleemanj

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #14 on: July 21, 2015, 12:35:57 pm »
I found that in Queensland, it's illegal to replace even low-voltage components in electrical equipment

It is worth pointing out perhaps that in the regulations (and this is fairly similar around the world), mains power is in the "Low Voltage" band of 50V AC to 1000V AC. 

What the lay person might consider "Low Voltage" is actually "Extra Low Voltage" (under 50V AC, under 120V DC) in so far as regulations go.

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Offline HackedFridgeMagnet

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #15 on: July 21, 2015, 02:20:54 pm »
I found that in Queensland, it's illegal to replace even low-voltage components in electrical equipment

It is worth pointing out perhaps that in the regulations (and this is fairly similar around the world), mains power is in the "Low Voltage" band of 50V AC to 1000V AC. 

What the lay person might consider "Low Voltage" is actually "Extra Low Voltage" (under 50V AC, under 120V DC) in so far as regulations go.

This is right. Reread those regulations with this in mind.
"Low Voltage" as defined in the standards is greater than 50v AC or 120V DC.
Anything less is considered "Extra Low Voltage" and those rules will not apply.
 

Offline Kibi

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #16 on: July 21, 2015, 04:30:15 pm »
Back in Zim we used to repair stuff and whilst we made sure it was safe to use and all that sort of thing, we never had any actual Health and Safety police (we never really had any real police for that matter). Most people making the repairs had enough pride in themselves to ensure the equipment was fit for use.
People in Zim were glad enough to have their stuff mended rather than having to buy a new one. I wonder what it's like over there nowadays.
 

Offline jlmoon

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #17 on: July 21, 2015, 08:56:03 pm »
So the "Electricity Police" will knock my door down, handcuff me and haul me off to jail, if I pull a receptacle from the wall and tighten up the the loose screws or dress up the shoddy wiring left behind by the contracted electrician that installed it in the first place?   It will be a cold day in hell when a bureaucrat comes to my place and tells me I can't touch my electrical wiring in my house or office which I bought and paid for with my hard earned cash!   :scared:
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Offline ruffy91

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #18 on: July 21, 2015, 09:24:53 pm »
Much easier. Your insurance just won't pay if they find out that your unqualified repairwork was the culprit that burned your house down. On the other side if the electrician did a totally incompetent job his insurance will pay you.
 

Offline briselec

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #19 on: July 21, 2015, 09:54:04 pm »
Much easier. Your insurance just won't pay if they find out that your unqualified repairwork was the culprit that burned your house down. On the other side if the electrician did a totally incompetent job his insurance will pay you.

Exactly! One of the reasons electrical contractors are required to have a contractors license is to ensure they have adequate public liability insurance.
 

Offline jlmoon

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #20 on: July 21, 2015, 09:55:58 pm »
Much easier. Your insurance just won't pay if they find out that your unqualified repairwork was the culprit that burned your house down. On the other side if the electrician did a totally incompetent job his insurance will pay you.

Exactly! One of the reasons electrical contractors are required to have a contractors license is to ensure they have adequate public liability insurance.

If they are still in business!
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Offline engiadina

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #21 on: July 21, 2015, 10:08:16 pm »
In Germany your private insurance will pay you and afterwards ask the electricians insurance for the money. If that guy is out of business, thats the risk of the private insurance.

As long as you have done all work by an approved electrician, your private insurance will pay!
 

Offline KJDS

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #22 on: July 21, 2015, 10:11:55 pm »
Much easier. Your insurance just won't pay if they find out that your unqualified repairwork was the culprit that burned your house down. On the other side if the electrician did a totally incompetent job his insurance will pay you.

Exactly! One of the reasons electrical contractors are required to have a contractors license is to ensure they have adequate public liability insurance.

If they are still in business!

As far as I understand English insurance law, then if a contractor did some physical work in, say, 2011, then his insurer for that year would still be liable.

However if a contractor is doing design work, then he would be required to purchase run off insurance before closing his company. That would cover any claim made against the company after it had closed.

Offline free_electron

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #23 on: July 21, 2015, 10:19:09 pm »
Law? What law? Russian kids short out 500kV transmission lines and are still fine.

But those are russion transmission lines. and russian kids. their vodka to body mass ratio is close to 1.
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Offline tec5c

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Re: Legality of DIY repair of electronic goods
« Reply #24 on: July 21, 2015, 10:21:49 pm »
Law? What law? Russian kids short out 500kV transmission lines and are still fine.

But those are russion transmission lines. and russian kids. their vodka to body mass ratio is close to 1.

 :-DD!!
 


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