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white van man

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About white van man

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  1. I actually quite like it when customers want to supply their own materials. It is one great big hassle taken off of me. I don't have to waste time driving about to collect materials, or arrange deliveries and hope they turn up on time. And when something is damaged or delivered in error it's their problem not mine. I'd rather be on site doing what I enjoy. Nothing worse than wasting an hour stuck in traffic trying to pick up a bag of cement.
  2. Best advice of all. Good builders won't mind you looking at previous work. I always offer to show potential customers my work as, I know it will show them what they will get for their money. On topic. Without knowing the full facts of the story posted it is hard to comment. But when things reach the stage they have it is clear that everyone is a loser. What I will say is that there are definitely people out there who have work done,with no intention of paying the full amount(even though the work is good). The worst offenders (from talking to other people in the trade) are normally those with pots of money. I can safely say that in 10 years of trading I have never had a difficult or non paying customer. I put a lot of this down to the fact that I only work on recomendation, and also that I follow a few basic rules at all times. I am the first to admit that the building trade is plagued by poor standards. It p***es me off as much as it does those who are being turned over, as we all get tarred with the same brush. (Read King Stromba's post) Good communication at all times is the key to a successful project. From a builder's point of view we need know to everything required upfront ASAP. It's no good saying I need a socket and TV point half way up the wall when the plasterer is washing his tools up. From a customers point of view I always try and give them all the possible options, both before and during work. Extras can be a big falling out point. Invariably on larger projects it is inevitable that unforseen problems will occur as the layers are peeled back. A good builder should highlight these ASAP to the customer and give them options on the work required and the extra costs involved. I always do and if they don't agree to pay for them I won't do them. At the end of the job there won't be any suprise costs. Like it or not but refreshments on offer will make a hell of a difference to builders. It shows a bit of appreciation if nothing else. I carry my own kettle and tea gear as it is surprising how many ignorant people there are who will watch you work all day without a cuppa. Bit of a generalisation but the best customer is OAP Mrs Jones. She normally has the kettle on as you pull up in the morning.
  3. No problem. Thats right. All "dirty water" goes for treatment through the one system. As far as I know all surface water ie rainwater goes into local streams and rivers. Reason being that it doesn't then overload the sewage system. The enviroment agency know when many people are putting dirty water into the surface water system because it shows up in the local streams/rivers. A couple of years ago in my area, residents near to local rivers had visits from the EnvAgy to check up!! All those with washing machines etc discharging into surface water drains were told to re route the plumbing into the appropriate drains!!
  4. It is fine (under building regs) for a toilet/washroom to open into a kitchen. No need for a lobby. It should have mechanical ventilation (extractor fan) with an over run timer (if there is no opening window) There should also be a wash basin in there. There are two types of drainage system in a domestic situation. Foul water (sewage) should take all dirty water/waste from the house. This will include washing machine waste water as well as toilet and bath washing waste. The other system is rain water. The two are seperate and it is not permited for the two to mix. Both main drains under the ground are normally at least 4" in diameter. A foot from the surface is not unusual. The new toilet will be subject to building regs as the foul water drainage has been altered and added to.
  5. Periodic inspection and testing is necessary because all installations deteriorate over time due to damage, wear and tear, ageing, corrosion and excessive loading. Legislation requires that electrical installations are maintained in a safe condition and therefore must be periodically inspected and tested. Public bodies that may require a PIR are licensing authorities, local councils, insurance companies and mortgage lenders. Arrogant? Why? Because I wouldn't trust a PIR carried out by someone with no electrical background or qualifications. Damn right. I see on a regular basis, dangerous electrical work carried out by DIYers who think they are competant. Inspection and testing is not as easy as a hired test meter and a set of instructions. People place trust in a PIR, in that it is proving an installation is safe. You are giving the impression that a PIR is not hard to carry out and anyone can do them correctly. You are wrong. I too am out of this thread
  6. All electrical work requires a test certificate regardless of Part P. This is a requirement under BS7671. There are limited works that are not notifiable to the local authority, however it should be tested and a minor works certificate should be issued. Any work needing an Installation certificate will need to be notified under Part P. As for a PIR there is a bit more involved than an intelligent person with a set of instructions and some hired test equipment.For a start you need knowledge of wiring systems, earthing arrangements, supply characteristics BS7671 etc etc. You also need to know how to test, what the tests are telling you, and if they comply. Then you will need knowledge on how to complete the various parts of the report. It is correct that anyone can carry out a PIR, however, I would not place an ounce of trust a PIR carried out by someone who was not an electrician at the very least. Even then the minimum qualification they should have is city and guilds 2391.They should also have professional indemnity insurance in place. Mr DIY with his Hire shop tester will not cut it.
  7. My thoughts exactly. I think the vendor has got an effing cheek, trying to impose their will, forever after they have gone. They're selling the place FFS. If they love the place that much, so as to care what happens to it, they shouldn't be selling. They might oppose everything you ever want to do. It is difficult enough to sell a place in this climate as it is, without stipulating b0**0x like this! Steer well clear and watch them struggle to sell it.
  8. The installation of an electric cooker is different from replacing a light fitting. You would have to ensure that the fixed wiring supply and breaker/fuse is capable of carrying the load of the new appliance. If the cooker load is greater than 2KW, then then cooker must now be on its own dedicated radial circuit. Assuming that original supply is adequate then connecting the cooker would not be notifiable under Part P. However any good electrician would test the circuit prior to connection to ensure that earth fault disconnection times would be met. This would ensure that the cooker would not become live under fault conditions.
  9. Sorry, but you are wrong. It is a requirement of BS 7671 IEE wiring regs, that all electrical work is inspected, tested and a relevant certificate is issued prior to the work being put into use. Minor work is also required to be certified under Part P and a relavent minor works certificate has to be issued.
  10. You won't get any English grown cucumbers during the winter months. The English growing season runs from around March/April to September/ October. After that it is un-economical to grow cumbers in Britain. They are grown hyroponically in huge greenhouses here in England. The growers also have to use large amounts of heating oil during the colder months, which obviously adds to the cost. There are a lot of imports from Holland during this period as well. During the mid 90's I used to run cucumbers, peppers and other veg back from the South coast of Spain during the winter months. It normally takes 3 days to get back. Add another 2-3 days for packing, transport to supermarket distribution centres and then transported on to stores and most veg is probably getting on for a week old before it is sold.
  11. Correct. All you do is pay the local building control to inspect the work and windows, and they will issue the relavent certificate of compliance. This will be required (in place of a FENSA certificate)should you sell the property.FENSA is for window companies to self certify their own work, and FENSA issue a 10 year insurance backed guarentee to cover you against faulty workmanship, should the window company go out of business.
  12. I didn't hear anyone involved in BTL complaining about fraud a year or so ago though. When all their properties were rising in value by a zillion % p.a. it was a "good business". Now their pwoperdees are worth J@ck Sh1t -it's fraud. Can't have it both ways.
  13. If I understand you correctly then I agree. A main service fuse's purpose is to protect the main tails to the installation, nothing more. If it is rated at 60 amps and current flowing is less than 1 amp then it will never blow. Herein lies the danger though, as anyone subjected to this current flow is in danger of dying. No it's not. Not saying it happens in every single case, but you are very lucky if you can get away with no injuries after coming into contact with live parts at the origin of an installation. It is not uncommon for people to be thrown back or die in this situation. Sorry but are you saying that you have recieved two or three shocks at the origin of a installation, before the meter, without serous injury or being thrown back? I find that hard to believe but I not impossible I guess. Not quite sure what you are saying here.Sorry Depends on what circuit protection you have in place and what the situation is. If all you have is a fuse or MCB as protection and the situation is direct contact, then you will not be protected, and yes instinct is all you have. Wouldn't place a lot of faith in it though. You are not unique in not dying from an electric shock, just as the dead are not unique in dying from an electric shock.
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