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Old 28.02.2012, 00:42
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Channeling electrical wires

Hi,

In the near future I will be wanting some wiring work done in my house, but so far any work that has been done or discussed has involved plastic casings for the wires. I would really prefer to actually channel into the wall and plaster over. Stupid question but has anyone managed to get anyone to do this in Switzerland? And if so was it very costly? Was the work of a good standard? Any tips appreciated.
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Old 28.02.2012, 01:01
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Re: Channeling electrical wires

All electrical installation work has to be approved by a Swiss approved electrician. The correct size wiring must be inside the orange or grey plastic corrugated tubing, and then this tubing can be plastered over. Obviously if the work doesn't meet the Swiss electrical standards it won't be approved, and the installation will have to be repeated.
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Old 28.02.2012, 08:45
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Re: Channeling electrical wires

Thanks for your reply. The problem we have had when seeking quotes is that he electricians only seem to extend wires by placing in plastic casings on the which they then screww to the outside of the walls. I was just wondering if for some reason swiss electricians do not want to cut into the walls and sink the plastic casing thereby hiding it?
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Old 28.02.2012, 09:04
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Re: Channeling electrical wires

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I was just wondering if for some reason swiss electricians do not want to cut into the walls and sink the plastic casing thereby hiding it?
Electricians don't gouge holes in walls, you will need to hire a mason to to that!

And you can expect that to be expensive and messy.

Tom
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Old 28.02.2012, 09:11
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Re: Channeling electrical wires

There is no reason why they can not offer both, it depends on the company. Depending on how much you need doing this is normally a 3 person (Electrician, Plasterer and Painter) with the Electrician being the most expensive but for a small job it is better to get him to handle the lot. The other (maybe cheaper) option is to use one of the Handymen on this site to do the cutting/laying of the conduit in the walls and repairs, then get the Electricial to come and fit the cables and switches ect.
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Old 28.02.2012, 22:41
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Re: Channeling electrical wires

That's a good idea. Don't suppose yu have any recommendations do you?
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Old 29.02.2012, 08:29
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Re: Channeling electrical wires

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That's a good idea. Don't suppose yu have any recommendations do you?
I have not worked with any of them personally but if you search "handyman" you will find someone. Bauhaus or www.conrad.ch are a couple of places which have a good range of electrical supplies if you know what you want.
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Old 29.02.2012, 08:42
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Re: Channeling electrical wires

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Electricians don't gouge holes in walls, you will need to hire a mason to to that!

And you can expect that to be expensive and messy.

Tom
Actually they do, at least where I live. They just don't close them up again.
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Old 29.02.2012, 08:53
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Re: Channeling electrical wires

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Electricians don't gouge holes in walls, you will need to hire a mason to to that!

And you can expect that to be expensive and messy.

Tom
Quote:
Actually they do, at least where I live. They just don't close them up again.
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The one we used some years back during complete rewiring for renovation also made the channel in the wall - but the don't do it neatly or clear up afterwards.

OP - have you considered doing the preparatory work yourself?
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Old 29.02.2012, 11:34
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Re: Channeling electrical wires

Ah-ha, this famous topic!

This is one particular industry that is highly protected here. It is one of those topics where a lot of communication is put out claiming that if you will be killed and your house will burn down if you do anything, usually with dramatic pictures. This could indeed occur, and I do support this; you only need to accidentally brush a finger against an exposed live wire and it could kill you. However most safety issues that actually arise seem to be due to incompetency on behalf of the electrician - I haven't yet found any statistics to show how many DIY-related accidents occurred, only what happens in the industry. I suspect that the majority of the protection is there to keep the industry alive in Switzerland, rather than everyone going to cheaper electricians over the many borders.

Anyway, I digress.

Legally (according to NIV - Niederspannugsinstallationsverordnung, Chapter 4, Article 16, paragraphs a and b), you can add an extra socket, replace a light switch, etc. so long as the circuit is only single-phase and is protected by an RCD. Even then, you have to get the work signed off.

Otherwise, you can actually plan the work, you can plan where you want the equipment to be installed, number of sockets and all that. But to plan the work, you do need to know (for one example only) how many cables will be installed in each conduit (there are limits!). This an electrician can advise on.

My overall advice is to find an electrican who is happy to work with you from the start. If you are knowledgable about the whole situation, then this should be no problem, but it really depends on the attitude of the particular electrician. At the end of the day, none of it is rocket science; neither is the mathematics behind it all. But I am an electrical engineer anyway.

I suggest a good book - "Elektrische Installationen and Apparate" by Hans Rudolf Ris. It costs 128CHF, but it is an excellent, fairly technical book that deals with all aspect of electrical installations and equipment. It's in German. It makes a lot of references to NIN2010 (The Swiss Standards, based mainly on the europe-wide IEC standards), but does include a lot of the basic information from that. I bought the NIN2010 standards brand-new from an electrician who then didn't want to be an electrician..

(On a final, off-topic note, Swiss electricians literally spend years training to do their work, but they are no better at their job than any other I have seen. I have worked with Swiss electricians, and the lack of initiative and sub-standard quality was sometimes astounding. Of course, however, there are some truly excellent ones.)

Cheers,
Chris

Last edited by chrisIDS; 29.02.2012 at 12:05.
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Old 05.03.2012, 10:51
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Re: Channeling electrical wires

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Actually they do, at least where I live. They just don't close them up again.
Yeah, the electrician we had was very handy with a jackhammer, only he got a bit too carried away and went all the way through to the other side of a15cm thick solid wall. He did plaster it up, but as others said, if you want it back to pristine condition, you may need to hire a plaster, etc. depending on what type of walls you have.

On another note, some previous (idiot) owner of our house decided to do some DIY electric work, by running a un-encased electic wire to a new location. When the electrician opened it up, he was shocked, as it was not allowed and was indeed a fire hazard, and danerous to him if he 'hit' the wire when opening it up. The whole house could of gone up in smoke. Best to get a qualifed electician and follow the swiss rules/norms for installation with all the protective channeling.
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