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Electrical Installations for Data Centres

Data Centre Electrical Installation

Data centres and comms rooms are crucial assets for any modern business. By installing these hubs within your company you are laying the foundations for both growth and competitiveness. Data, after all, is a key aspect of competing in the digital age. And, as anyone working in an operational data centre will tell you, there’s a lot of it.

But you need these areas of intense processing and power to be working to their full potential. To put it simply: there is no room for error. If, for example, you lose your comms room power then the majority of your business operations will stop. And this will spell disaster for your productivity and profits. Clearly, it’s important to have a reliable setup, but how do you go about achieving this?

What are Data Centres and Comms Rooms?

Before we go any further it’s a good idea that we understand exactly what these data centres and comms rooms are. The good news is that both terms are interchangeable and mean the same thing, so there’s only half the learning you were expecting. So, what is a data centre? Well, it’s simply a central location where an organization concentrates the main engine of its IT and telecommunications equipment e.g. data storage, network servers and telecommunication networks.

What Do You Need to Install a Good Data Centre?

Seeing as your data centre will be housing essential business elements, as well as needing to stick to server room standards, it needs to be installed correctly. To achieve this make sure you take the following into account:

  • Planning: The complexities of a data centre dictate that planning is critical when it comes to an installation. It’s not as simple as deciding where to position equipment and where the plug sockets need to be installed. Instead, you need to invest considerable time into understanding what your business needs and how your budget can best achieve this. It’s then a case of formulating a strategy to put this into place and give your company the best comms room it can have.

 

  • Power is King: Without power your business won’t be able to operate. Therefore, one of the most important elements of any data centre install is a reliable power supply. It not only needs to be able to cope with your demand, but it needs to do so with the minimum of problems. No power supply, however, is 100% perfect. And this is why installing emergency backup power supplies – such as a UPS and generator installation – is the surest way to maintain operations.

 

  • Scalability: A good comms room will hopefully be matched by a good business which, over time, grows. But this growth needs to be taken into consideration when designing and installing your data centre. IT and telecommunication technology is complex and far from space saving. Accordingly, your comms room needs to take this into account, so make sure there is ample space to house additional equipment, power supplies and cabling.

A world-class data centre will become the lifeblood of your organisation’s technological activities. And it will have the potential to push your business to new heights. But the intricacies involved with this technology mean it’s difficult to get right. And this is why it pays to connect with professionals who can both advise you on the best way forwards as well as delivering on these promises.

Learn more about Data Centre Electrical Services or call to discuss your requirements.

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PAT TESTING PORTABLE APPLIANCE TESTING - Electrical Testing

PAT Testing in the Workplace

A Quick Guide to PAT Testing for the Workplace

Electricity is a form of energy which can be exceptionally powerful and is used extensively in workplaces. It can be used to power offices, factories and shops in a variety of ways. But electricity can also be dangerous. Any workplace, packed full of electrical products, represents a significant risk to your staff and your customers. That’s why it’s crucial that you regularly test your electrical appliances.

The most common safety test carried out is PAT testing. It’s a series of checks which safeguards people coming into your business and ensures that you meet the Electricity at Work Regulations. You may not be familiar with the methods behind PAT testing, so we’ve put together a quick guide.

What is PAT Testing?

Portable Appliance Testing (better known as PAT ) involves the examination of electrical products to verify their safety and confirm they are fit to use. The procedure takes in the following checks:

  • A visual inspection of both the cables and the appliance to identify any significant damage e.g. split cables and exposed components
  • An insulation test which measures the quality of insulation that protects any parts of the appliance which carry a current
  • Carrying out an earthing continuity test to determine whether earthing conductors are suitable enough to protect against electric shock

A PAT test can be completed relatively quickly by connecting appliances to a PAT testing device. If the appliance passes the PAT test then it can continue to be used. However, any appliance that fails its PAT test must be removed from service immediately. Although not a legal necessity, it is considered good practice to label individual devices with a PASS/FAIL sticker.

Electrical Testing in the Workplace

The Electricity at Work Regulations state that all electrical systems must be maintained in order to prevent any form of danger. The regulations do not specifically indicate that PAT testing itself is a legal requirement, but the fact remains that it’s a crucial step in maintaining appliances. PAT testing is a guaranteed method for evaluating the safety of electrical appliances. As such, it should form a part of every organisation’s maintenance routine.

When it comes to PAT testing frequency it is recommended that these checks are carried out as per below:

  • Offices, Hotels and Shops: Electrical appliances that fall under the class 1 category – stationary and IT devices – should be tested every four years. However the recommended time between tests is much shorter for portable equipment (every two years) and handheld equipment (every year) 
  • Public Use: Stationary equipment, along with IT systems, should be tested every year if they are being used by the public. Class 2 appliances – those which do not require an earth connection – are also subject to this yearly test. However, any portable and handheld equipment that is handled by the public should be PAT tested every six months.

Final Thoughts

PAT testing is one of the simplest methods of protecting your staff and your customers. Not only does it help your business comply with the Electricity at Work Regulations, but it minimises the risk of electrical accidents. Accordingly, it’s vital that your business understands all PAT testing requirements and also adheres to the recommended PAT testing frequency periods. Most important of all is to work with competent PAT testers who can confidently certify your equipment.

 

Read more about Electrical Testing or call to discuss your requirements.

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