Testing and tagging electrical appliances is one useful way to check electrical equipment is safe.

However, it's not mandatory. What is legally required is that equipment is electrically safe and maintained in a safe condition.

Testing and tagging doesn't guarantee future electrical safety, what it does is provide a snapshot of how safe the appliance is at the time of testing.

It is up to the person conducting the business or undertaking (PCBU) to decide whether to test and tag. They can either get the testing equipment and train up a worker, or hire a third-party to carry out the testing.

Whoever does the work must have the knowledge and skills to do the task correctly. It doesn't need to be a registered electrical worker but the person needs to be able to understand the Standards involved. However, only a registered electrical worker will be able to fix any problems the testing reveals.

How often you test and tag depends on the nature of the equipment and the workplace. For example, electrical equipment used on a construction site - outside and in damp conditions - would need more frequent testing than a computer in an office.

Whether you decide to test and tag or not, it's important to regularly look at cords, plugs and tools to see if they're damaged.

And remember, whether tested and tagged or not, electrical equipment still needs to be RCD-protected in certain circumstances, such as outside in the damp.

Related resources

The Electricity (Safety) Regulations 2010(external link) apply to appliances, leads, and hand-held tools connected to electricity.

The AS/NZS 3760 Standard(external link) is an option for PCBUs to demonstrate compliance testing and tagging.

The AS/NZS 3012 Standard(external link) provides guidance for the safe use of electricity on construction and demolition sites.

Our guide for ensuring electrical safety on small construction sites provides information about electrical supply on small construction sites.