Periodic Inspection and Regular Maintenance of Electrical Installations in Buildings

Periodic Inspection, Testing and Certification (PITC) for Fixed Electrical Installations

Pursuant to the Electricity (Wiring) Regulations, owners of electrical installations shall have their installations inspected, tested and certified periodically. Failure to comply with the requirements would present safety hazards resulting in fire or power outage, and the offenders will be prosecuted. For typical residential or commercial premises, electrical installations with an approved loading exceeding 100 amperes shall be inspected, tested and certified at least once every five years. The Periodic Test Certificate (Form WR2) shall be submitted to EMSD for endorsement. It should be noted that electrical work (including inspection, maintenance, repair, etc.) must be carried out by a registered electrical contractor.

With a view to preventing electrical accidents and thus ensuring public safety, EMSD has been taking proactive approaches to promote the importance of PITC to building owners. EMSD makes concerted efforts with property management companies, trade organizations, District Council, Home Affairs Department (District Offices), Buildings Department, etc. to facilitate the PITC works over the territory.

As different buildings may have specific operational needs during PITC works, property management companies and registered electrical contractors can liaise with building owners and tenants to work out a PITC plan before commencement of the works in order to suit their specific needs. For example, they may arrange to suspend and resume the power supply by zones, provide temporary power supply during PITC works, devise a contingency plan to handle emergency situations, etc.

This webpage not only provides useful information for the public and other relevant parties but also gives technical information for the trade. You may contact us if you have any enquiry or require further information in arranging PITC.

 

Information for the Public

  1. Electrical Installations and their Owners

  2. Responsibilities of the Owners of Electrical Installations

  3. Periodic Inspection, Testing and Certification

    • Pursuant to Regulation 20 of the “Electricity (Wiring) Regulations”, owners of electrical installations shall have their installations inspected, tested and certified periodically to confirm that the requirements of the Electricity Ordinance have been met. The frequency for such inspection, test & certification may be at least once every 12 months or at least once every 5 years depending on the type of installation. Certification for the above shall be made on specified forms -

      Offenders will be prosecuted. Lack of maintenance of electrical installations would also present safety hazards resulting in fire or power outage.

    • If your fixed electrical installations are located at:

      1. A place of public entertainment - CinemaA place of public entertainment (e.g. cinema),
      1. Premises for the production or storage of dangerous goods - DG StorePremises for the production or storage of dangerous goods (e.g. DG store), or
      1. Premises with a high voltage fixed electrical installation (exceeding 1000V root mean square alternating current between conductors)Premises with a high voltage fixed electrical installation (exceeding 1000V root mean square alternating current between conductors),

      By law, the electrical installations shall be inspected, tested and certified at least once every 12 months.

    • If your fixed electrical installations are located at:

      1. A hotel, a hospital, a nursing home, a school, an institution, or a child care centre,
        A Hotel
        A Hospital
        A Nursing Home
        A School
        An Institution
        A Child Care Centre
      1. A factory with an approved loading exceeding 200AA factory with an approved loading exceeding 200A, or
      1. Premises with an approved loading exceeding 100APremises including commercial or residential unit and building with an approved loading exceeding 100A,

      By law, the electrical installations shall be inspected, tested and certified at least once every 5 years.

      Remark: To ensure safety, arrange a registered electrical contractor to inspect and test an electrical installation periodically even though its approved loading does not exceed 100A.
    • If in doubt, the owners may arrange a registered electrical contractor to check.The approved loading of the communal electrical installation in most buildings exceeds 100A, whereas that of the electrical installation in general residential units usually does not exceed. If in doubt, the owners may arrange a registered electrical contractor to check.
    • Guideline for Endorsement of Periodic Test Certificates
      1. Employ a registered electrical contractor to inspect and test your electrical installations.
      2. After the test, request your electrical contractor to issue a “Periodic Test Certificate – Form WR2” within one month from the date of completion of the work.
      3. Send the certificate together within an application fee to EMSD for endorsement within two weeks from the issuance date of the certificate.
      4. EMSD may conduct random checking of the certified electrical installations. The certificate, duly endorsed by EMSD, will be returned to the applicant.
      5. Keep your endorsed certificate properly for inspection of EMSD’s officer upon request.
      6. EMSD may carry out random inspection to ensure the completion of periodic test in accordance with the law.
    • The Periodic Test Certificate will soon expireCheck if your "Periodic Test Certificate – Form WR2" is still valid. If the certificate will soon expire, please arrange your electrical installations to be inspected, tested and certified again immediately.
    • Experience shows that for buildings without owners’ corporations, there were difficulties in coordinating the inspection and test of the electrical installations. Therefore, besides taking enforcement action against property owners failing to arrange periodic inspection and test, the EMSD will, through education and persuasion, assist property owners to complete periodic inspection and test as soon as possible and to comply with the statutory requirements. When we inspect the electrical installations of buildings, we will visit the owners of the buildings, explaining the statutory requirements and how to arrange periodic inspection and test of electrical installations and providing technical advice. Moreover, we join hands with the District Offices, the Buildings Department, the Hong Kong Housing Society and the Urban Renewal Authority in offering assistance to the property owners. We attend the meetings of the property owners and provide them with technical advice. The District Offices help property owners form owners' corporations, while the subsidy schemes administered by the District Offices and the Urban Renewal Authority provide financial assistance to the property owners.
  1. Subsidy Schemes

  2. List of Registered Electrical Contractors

  3. List of Registered Electrical Workers

  4. Power Suspension Arrangement for Electrical Work

    • Caution - Men At WorkLive work can easily cause accidents which may result in death and injury and the loss of property. In the event of the electrical installation being damaged in the accident, prolonged power outage may result. In this connection, the Code of Practice for the Electricity (Wiring) Regulations requires that registered electrical contractors must arrange for the suspension of power supply to the electrical circuits concerned before electrical work can commence on the circuits.
    • Power Suspension ArrangementIn carrying out any electrical work for the building, such as addition, alteration, maintenance and inspection, building owners, owners’ corporations or property management companies should collaborate with registered electrical contractors to arrange power suspension with sufficient time for workers to carry out the electrical work. The registered electrical contractor should also liaise closely with building owners, owners’ corporations or property management companies to put in place power suspension arrangements and temporary measures which can match the operational needs of the building, so as to minimise the impact of the electrical work to the building users.
  1. Publicity Materials

  1. Frequently Asked Questions

 

Information for the Trade

  1. Notes for Registered Electrical Workers

    - Inspection, Testing & Certification of Electrical Installations
    • The Electricity (Wiring) Regulations stipulate that owners of specified types of fixed electrical installations shall have the electrical installations inspected, tested and certified at least once every year or every five years. Owners of fixed electrical installations shall deliver the Periodic Test Certificates (Form WR2) to the EMSD for endorsement within two weeks after the Certificates are issued.
    • The EMSD always actively promotes the importance of PITC to owners of the electrical installations (including property owners, incorporated owners and property management companies), and reminds them to complete PITC works as early as possible before the expiry of the Periodic Test Certificates. Meanwhile, the EMSD also steps up inspections of fixed electrical installations in all buildings in Hong Kong, issues notices to and takes enforcement actions against the electrical installations’ owners who fail to complete PITC works in accordance with the regulations. If you have conducted the electrical tests for buildings, you can also help remind the owners of these buildings to arrange PITC works before the expiry of the existing certificates.
  1. Fixed Electrical Installation

    • According to the Electricity Ordinance , a fixed electrical installation means "a low or high voltage electrical installation that is fixed to premises but does not include any electrical equipment that is supplied with electricity after passing through a socket of the installation at which the supply can be disconnected without the use of a tool".
    • The communal electrical installations of a building to be inspected and tested periodically normally include the main switch, riser, secondary meters and switches of all floors, earthing arrangements, equipotential bonding etc. of the power supply system. For buildings, housing estates and clubs completed recently, communal fixed electrical installations may include main switchboards, emergency generators, lifts, fire service installations, pump installations, lightning protection installations and the supply system of security equipment.

      Main Switches
      Main switches
      Earthing System
      Earthing System
      Secondary Meters and Switches for Units
      Secondary Meters and Switches for Units
      Risers
      Risers
      Main Switchboard
      Main Switchboard
      Emergency Generator
      Emergency Generator
  1. Power Suspension Arrangement for Electrical Work

    • Caution - Men At Work

      To ensure the electrical work is carried out in a safe environment, the upstream switch or circuit breaker must be switched off and isolated before the electrical work is carried out. If the switch or circuit breaker is equipped with a locking mechanism, lock off the circuit breaker or switch, and display securely an appropriate warning notice to prevent accidents caused by the switch or circuit breaker being inadvertently turned on during the electrical work.

      Furthermore, for the safety of the electrical workers, RECs should cut off the power company’s electricity supply before carrying out periodic inspection and testing for the main switchboard, and ensure that the electrical work is carried out after the electrical installations are isolated. In submitting periodic test certification for endorsement, the power company’s record for power suspension shall also be submitted for vetting.

    • Leaflet

      Power Suspension Arrangement for Electrical Work
      Power Suspension Arrangement for Electrical Work

  1. Guideline for Periodic Inspection, Testing and Certification (PITC) Work

    • Registered electrical contractors deploy registered electrical workers of appropriate grade to carry out the electrical work.
    • Before the test, registered electrical contractors and workers should make proper preparations and arrange power suspension with sufficient time to carry out the electrical work. In particular, discussions with owners of fixed electrical installations are vital. Work programmes should be drawn up and cover the following matters:

      Precautionary measures should be taken by registered electrical workers responsible for the work during inspection and testing and the method of tests should be such that no danger to persons or property can occur even if the circuit being tested is defective. Moreover, the responsible registered electrical workers should conduct inspection and testing in person or monitor the inspection and testing on the spot to ensure electrical safety.

    • Registered electrical workers should firstly visually inspect all parts of the fixed electrical installations to ascertain if the electrical equipment is selected correctly, installed properly and free from obvious defects. Then they have to inspect the connection and identification of conductors, signs, warning notices, protective devices etc.

      • Regarding the inspection and testing items, registered electrical workers should carry out the following tests:
        • continuity of protective conductors, including main and supplementary equipotential bonding;
        • continuity of ring final circuit conductors;
        • insulation resistance;
        • polarity;
        • earth electrode resistance;
        • earth fault loop impedance;
        • functions of all protective devices; and
        • functions of all items of equipment.

      In the event of any inspection or test indicating failure to comply, that test and those preceding, the results of which may have been influenced by the fault indicated, should be repeated after the fault has been rectified to ensure safety.

    • After completion of the inspection and testing, the registered electrical workers should properly record the data obtained on the checklists and test record forms. Please refer to Code 22D and Appendix 13 of the Code of Practice for the Electricity (Wiring) Regulations for things to note about the checklists and checklist samples.
      • Checklists to be used in Appendix 13 of the Code of Practice
        RequirementsChecklists to be used
        Periodic inspection and testing for a low voltage installation 1
        Inspection and testing for Renewable Energy Power System Installations 3
        Inspection and testing for a high voltage installation 5
    • After completion of the inspection and testing and restoration of electricity supply, the registered electrical contractors and workers should resume electricity supply, issue Periodic Test Certificates (WR2) within the statutory period and prepare the following documents:
      • Periodic Test Certificate (Part of the Installation) (Form WR2(A)) (If any)
      • Detailed circuit diagram (from main circuit to final circuit)
      • Testing results and records of all installations tested
      • Power company’s record for power suspension (If any)
    • Owners of electrical installations or their agents shall submit the test certificates, other relevant information and the endorsement fees to the EMSD for endorsement within 2 weeks after the date of the certificate. In addition, registered electrical contractors should keep all records of electrical work for the last 5 years. They should also provide the EMSD with their records, drawings or documents for inspection upon request.
    • Leaflet

      Guideline for Periodic Inspection, Testing and Certification (PITC) Work
      Guideline for Periodic Inspection, Testing and Certification (PITC) Work

  1. Common Mistakes found in Periodic Test Certificates

    • When considering applications for endorsement of Periodic Test Certificates, EMSD staff frequently found wrong information or omissions in the Certificates. Therefore, they had to clarify with the applicants and request them to make corrections. Giving wrong information or omitting necessary information in the Certificates often delayed the endorsement of the Certificates. The following are some of the mistakes commonly found in the Certificates:
      Common Mistakes - (1) Dates
      The main inspection and test date (1A)
      Common Mistakes Points to Note
      1. Leave the space blank. Should fill in the inspection and test date correctly.
      2. Make mistakes when filling in the dates.
      • The date should not be later than the date of signature by the registered electrical worker (REW) (1B).
      • Should be within one month before the date of signature by the REW (1B).
      • Should be later than the issuing dates of all additional forms WR2A.
      The date of signature by the REW (1B) and the date of signature by the registered electrical contractor (REC) / owner of the fixed electrical installation (1C)
      Common Mistakes Points to Note
      1. Leave the space blank. Should fill in the date of signature correctly.
      2. The date (1C) is earlier than (1B) or (1A), the date (1B) is earlier than (1A), or the date (1A), (1B) or (1C) is later than the date of the endorsement application.
      • The correct sequence should be (1A) → (1B) → (1C) and then the date of the endorsement application.
      • The Certificate must be submitted to the EMSD for application for endorsement within two weeks from the dates signed (1B) and (1C).
      Common Mistakes - (2) Choosing the Box / Signature
      Whether an additional form WR2A is attached (2A)
      Common Mistakes Points to Note
      1. Leave the space blank. Should choose the correct box.
      2. Choose the wrong box. If the upper box is chosen, that means there is no additional form WR2A. If the lower box is chosen, that means an additional form WR2A is attached. The upper and lower boxes shall not be chosen at the same time.
      The identity of the signer (2B)
      Common Mistakes Points to Note
      1. Leave the space blank. Should choose the correct box.
      2. Choose the wrong box.
      • If the upper box is chosen, the signer should be the REC.
      • If the lower box is chosen, the signer should be the owner of the fixed electrical installation (applicable when the REW concerned is a full time employee at a regular wage or salary of the owner of the electrical installation).
      Signature of the REW (2C)
      Common Mistakes Points to Note
      1. Leave the space blank. Should sign correctly.
      2. A photocopied signature is given. Should sign in one's own handwriting.
      Signature of the REC / the owner of the fixed electrical installation (2D)
      Common Mistakes Points to Note
      1. Leave the space blank. Should sign correctly.
      2. A photocopied signature is given. Should sign in one's own handwriting.
      3. Signed by a person not authorised by the REC
      • If the test is carried out by a REC, it should be signed by a person who is authorised by the REC and whose name has been recorded by the EMSD.
      • If the test is carried out by a REW who is a full time employee at a regular wage or salary of the owner of the electrical installation, it should be signed by the owner of the electrical installation.
      Common Mistakes - (3) Type of premises
      Type of premises where the fixed electrical installation is located (3)
      Common Mistakes Points to Note
      1. Leave the space blank. Should be filled in correctly.
      2. Provide wrong information. Should be filled in according to the type of premises where the electrical installation is located, for example cinema, factory and industrial undertakings, residential unit, restaurant, karaoke, home for the elderly, hotel, hospital, etc.
      Common Mistakes - (4) Address of the electrical installation
      Address of the fixed electrical installation (4)
      Common Mistakes Points to Note
      1. Leave the space blank, provide wrong information, fail to give full information (e.g. omit the street number), etc.
      • Provide accurate information including the street number, floor and flat number of the premises where the installation is located.
      • If the building is located in a street with two street numbers (e.g. at the junction of two streets), detailed address should be provided.
      2. The address of the installation shown on the form is different from the address shown on the wiring diagram. Make sure the information is correct before submitting the Periodic Test Certificate.
      Common Mistakes - (5) Information on the owner of the electrical installation
      Name of the owner of the fixed electrical installation (5A)
      Common Mistakes Points to Note
      1. Leave the space blank, provide wrong information, fail to give full information (e.g. wrongly fill in the name of the REC), especially when the applicant intends that the endorsed Periodic Test Certificate will be returned to the owner of the installation by mail.
      • Should be filled in correctly.
      • Owners of the installations include incorporated owners of the building, individual property owners, companies, etc.
      Correspondence address of the owner of the fixed electrical installation (5B)
      Common Mistakes Points to Note
      1. Leave the space blank, provide wrong information, fail to give full information (e.g. wrongly fill in the address of the REC).
      • Should be filled in correctly.
      • The endorsed Periodic Test Certificate will normally be returned to the owner of the installation by mail.
      Contact telephone number of the owner of the fixed electrical installation (5C)
      Common Mistakes Points to Note
      1. Wrongly filled in the contact telephone number of the REW or the REC. Should only fill in the contact telephone number of the owner of the installation.
      Common Mistakes - (6) The inspected part of the electrical installation
      Description of the inspected part of the fixed electrical installation (6)
      Common Mistakes Points to Note
      1. Omission, fail to give full information. Should be filled in correctly.
      2. Parts of the electrical installation are not inspected, but the "excluded" parts are not mentioned.
      • Should list the parts not inspected (if any), for example pump installation, generator installation, etc.
      • The inspected part described in the additional form WR2A should not be treated as the “excluded” part in the form WR2.
    • The EMSD hopes that by quoting the above examples, it can help trade members fill in the Periodic Test Certificate more accurately. This could minimise the delay in the processing of endorsement applications caused by handling wrong information and omissions, clarification and making correction so as to enhance efficiency.
 

Contact Us

Electricity Legislation Division

Electrical and Mechanical Services Department

3 Kai Shing Street, Kowloon, Hong Kong
(Operating hours: 9:00 a.m. - 5:15 p.m. on Monday to Friday; closed on Saturday, Sunday and public holiday)

info@emsd.gov.hk
1823
2895 4929