RCD and Smoke Alarm Testing

 In Property Management

To help you protect your property investment, we are here to advice you on RCD’s and smoke alarms. Let’s not forget that these are all tax deductible! There are also changes to the RCD legislation coming up this year, so speak with your agent or contact Kaylee via kaylee@thepropertyexchange.com.au here at The Property Exchange for further info. Watch this video as we elaborate on the topic.

Kaylee: If you’re one of our clients or your property is managed by a reputable agency, then you would know all about RCD and smoke alarms, and you’re probably sick of hearing about it. But as you know, we’re here to offer you advice and make sure you’re armed with the best knowledge to protect your investment property.

Siobhan: We all understand that we need to comply when it comes to RCD and smoke alarm legislation, but why do we need to annually service them?

Kaylee: As you know, when it comes to property management compliance and legislation, nothing’s ever black and white. It’s no different with the RCD and smoke alarms. What it does state is that the owner is responsible for maintaining the RCD and smoke alarms. It doesn’t state how often that is supposed to be. However within the industry that is recognized as annually. Now, as Murphy’s Law goes, test annually and you’ll never encounter an issue. Test irregularly and an issue is likely to occur. In the unlikely event of electrocution or fire at your rental property, being able to provide an annual service compliance certificate will be extremely helpful in claiming any damages through insurance successfully, and also provide evidence to show that you as an owner have done all you can in the event a claim is made against you in court.

Siobhan: Thanks for the clarification, that’s all understood, but can’t I just test it myself instead of it costing me every year?

Kaylee: Look, you can, but it’s a bit like servicing your car yourself. You might have a bit of an idea of what you’re doing, but it’s not recognized and you’ve got no official record of it. Some people don’t actually know what goes into testing the smoke alarms and the RCDs, and it is actually quite complex.

When it comes to smoke alarms, they’ll be replacing the 9 volt backup battery. The smoke alarm is checked if it’s connected to the mains power, and the test button is pushed. Most importantly, they’re checking that there are the required alarms in line with the new legislation which has changed this year. They’ll check that the unit is in date and is not a recall product, and the alarm is actually smoke tested with smoke spray.

With RCDs, they check that the board is adequately protected, and they manually check the RCDs by a push test. Most importantly, the RCD is electronically tripped with a precision testing kit, and they are checking that the RCD is not a recalled product.

Siobhan: As you can see, there’s a fair bit more to the testing of the RCD and smoke alarm than you think. But don’t forget, it is a tax deduction. There are changes coming out to the RCD compliancy this year, so make sure you contact your agent or call Kaylee via 08 9388 3988 here at The Property Exchange to see how she can help.


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