Permits, What’s the Point?

Hey everyone it’s today’s edition of your Edmonton Electrician. Hauer Power Electrical here, and we’re going to talk today about Electrical Permits. Why do you need them, when do you need them, and what are they good for?

Often times when someone undergoes a new renovation they are unfamiliar with the permitting process. It’s not uncommon to wonder why the electrical permits are important. It is good to educate yourself on some of the costs and options when it comes to getting a permit.

When it comes down to it the main point of an electrical permit it for safety. The CEC, or Canadian Electrical Code dictates the minimum standard to which all electrical work must adhere to. These codes are set in place to keep people safe and property from being damaged. The Canadian Electric Code (CEC) is published every 3 years and is approved by the CSA (Canadian Standards Association). The CEC is revised upon every new issue with new codes pertaining to changing technologies, products, conditions, and circumstances. An electrical permit, upon inspection will help to verify that the work performed has been done in a manner to uphold these electrical codes put forth. These codes must be followed for electrical work, whether there is a permit or not, to ensure that an electrical system is in safe working order. A permit helps to ensure this by have an unbiased inspector look over the work and give it a pass or a fail verdict. As your Edmonton Electrician, we strongly encourage all customers to get a permit, as it helps to make certain that your installation was performed correctly with quality electrical work.

Now, aside from the safety aspect of getting an electrical permit, they also help to keep your Edmonton electrician accountable for their work. Electrical inspectors are unbiased third party inspectors hired from outside a corporation or customer. They help to provide a higher level of expectation than the Edmonton electrician or the electrical contractor and this helps keep the electrical work in a manner that upholds the electric codes. By keeping the electrical contractor accountable for their electrical work this in turn gives the customer assurance that their electrical work was performed to meet the CEC. If the electrical work does not meet the current edition of the canadian electrical code, then the inspector has the authority to fail the work. At which point the work must be corrected, and a re inspection must take place. This helps keep the electrical contractor responsible for maintaining a good quality of electrical work. By pulling the permit and having the work inspected by an independent third party this ultimately gives the property owner the assurance, keeps the contractor responsible, and gives the customer good piece of mind that their job has been made to meet or exceed the current electric codes.

The obligation exists by law to perform any electrical work on a system. Under the Alberta Safety Codes Act and Permit Regulations an Electrical Permit is required to install, alter or add to an electrical system. Whether you’re finishing a basement, adding a hot tub, a sub panel, doing renovations, etc. Not just limited to electrical permits, these documents are required by most governments in an effort to keep good quality work from being upheld. In some areas a homeowner can pull the permit themself, unless certain conditions exist. As your Edmonton electrician we use our masters certification to pull permits in all situations, including in the case of duplex homes where a homeowner is not allowed to pull it themself. Always ask your Edmonton electrician if they have their masters certificate in order to pull a permit, for your next project.

Unfortunately as with everything involved in property improvement, permits cost money. While they aren’t crazy expensive, they are expensive enough to deter a lot of customers and property owners from obtaining one. Depending on your construction value of your job the permit cost will vary. The inspection amount will also vary whether a single rough in inspection is required, a rough in, and a final. Or on larger scale projects like commercial construction periodic inspections are often required. Having serviced the Edmonton area for over 50 years, we at Hauer Power can help you through the permit process and what to avoid, whatever your electrical project may be!

Sometimes permits are not only required by law, but also required in order to perform the task itself. A common job that may require this is the task of a panel swap, or panel upgrade. In order to do a panel swap task safely the power to the main breaker must be de energized and the practice to do this is to pull your electrical meter. As a homeowner or even a contractor we are not allowed to pull the meter without approval by your local utility provider. Here in Edmonton the local utility provider is Epcor. Utility providers in most areas will require documentation of a permit in place prior to pulling the meter, as this helps ensure that the proper steps are being taken to do the job right. Should you decide to break the car seal that Epcor provides and pull the meter yourself, then you will have to face the consequences later. Consequences both financial and otherwise aer put in place to prevent unqualified individuals from performing electrical work without the proper procedures. Contact Epcor Meters for information on service disconnects and reconnects when performing electrical service changes. For electrical service installation requirements, refer to the Customer Connection Guide at epcor.ca.To learn more about Epcor and the procedures to have your work done safely, check out Epcors website, or give them a call.

At Hauer Power we like to give YOU the power. If you want to save some costs and take the responsibility on your next project you can often try to pull your electrical permit as the homeowner. Here is a link to the city of Edmonton page for electrical permits:

https://www.edmonton.ca/programs_services/electrical-permits-residential.aspx

As your Edmonton electrician we at Hauer Power Electrical are committed to providing the best quality electrical experiences to our customers as possible. If you’re ever concerned if you had an electrical job that was done up to code or not feel free to give us a call, we would love to have a look for you.

If this is something you would like a free in home quote on, contact us today! As your Edmonton electrician we are always happy to give another customer the power that they deserve.

Give us a call at: 1-780-935-0622

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