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  Domestic wiring and circuits            

Your electricity board supplies electricity to inside your home. It goes though a large fuse usually 60 amps 80 amps or 100amps which is sealed with electricity board fuses and should never be tampered with.

The fuse is then wired to your meter which is also the property of your electricity board. This is then wired to your consumer unit (more commonly known as your fuse box) which contains all the fuses or circuit breakers. The number of these will vary depending on the size of your home.

Consumer units should be labeled so you can tell which fuse/ circuit breaker is part of what circuit. All the wiring for all your house starts at the consumer unit. Each fuse/circuit breaker protects the wiring for individual circuits. Usually you will have a lighting circuit on each floor as well as a "ring" circuit for your socket outlets. There will also be other circuits for things like immersion heaters, central heating, cookers, etc.

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Simplified wiring layout
The diagram below shows a simplified version of what you might find in your home. Each circuit is protected by it's own fuse. You will commonly find a lighting circuit and socket ring on each floor and sometimes several on each floor in larger houses.


The wiring from your consumer for all the circuits and hidden behind walls ceiling voids etc. is insulated "twin and earth" cable.

Underneath an outer insulation you have a live, neutral and earth cable. Unlike the live and neutral the earth does not have it's own separate insulation. When terminated at lights sockets etc. earth sleeving must be put on any bare wire.(green and yellow stripey)

Recently the colours on the live and neutral have changed from red(live) and black(neutral) to come in line with the colours that have been used for many years on appliances like kettles toasters etc. these are Brown(live) Blue(neutral)

  Twin and earth. Old colours  
  Twin and earth. New colours