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Checking the General Control and Security Panel 

We will start by having a look at the basic elements on the general control and security panel:

Consumer unit. Its sections are described below.
  • MAINS ISOLATOR (MI): 

This is located beside the General Control and Security Panel, just before it. This switch disconnects (trips) the installation when the sum of the power demanded by the devices that are operating exceeds the subscribed power.

  • MASTER CIRCUIT BREAKER (MCB): 

This protects the entire house installation from overloads and short-circuits. It has only recently come to form part of General Control and Security Panels, thus quite often it does not appear on them.

  • RESIDUAL CURRENT DEVICE (RCD): 
  •  

The RCD disconnects the electrical installation quickly whenever there is a ground leakage, thus protecting people from electric shocks.

  • SMALL CIRCUIT BREAKERS (SCBs): 

These protect from the incidents caused by short-circuits and overloads in each of the interior circuits (lighting, heating, domestic appliances, etc.).   

As no doubt there will be some lever/switch turned down, we will proceed as follows:

  • You must disconnect all the elements (i.e., turn all the levers down): The MI (mains isolator), the Master Circuit Breaker (MCB), the Residual Current Device (RCD) and the SCBs.
  • Next, connect the MI. If it trips even though everything else is disconnected, you need to a call 900 17 11 71.
  • If the MI does not trip, you must then connect the Master Circuit Breaker (MCB). If this trips, it means that there is a fault at some point in the installation. A wireman needs to be called in.
  • If the MCB does not trip, you must then connect the RCD. If this trips, it means that the fault is being caused by some branch in the installation. A wireman needs to be called in.
  • If the RCD does not trip, you must then connect the SCBs one by one. If any SCB trips, it means that there is a fault in the corresponding circuit.
  • If no SCB trips, you must connect the receivers (light, domestic appliances, boiler, etc.) one by one until you locate the fault. If connecting a receiver disconnects the SCB, this means that the receiver is broken. You should call the appliance's technical service.
  • If you cannot locate the fault, you must call 900 17 11 71.
  • On the other hand, if only the MI trips when everything else is turned on in the house, this usually means that the power demanded by the electrical appliances in the house when these are on is greater than the power subscribed with Iberdrola Distribución Eléctrica. In order to be able to use the light, it is necessary to disconnect some of the appliances in order to reduce the power demand and so that the MI can connect according to its current. In order to be able to have all of the appliances working at the same time in the future, you will need to increase the subscribed power. The demanded power must never exceed the subscribed power, which is why Iberdrola Distribución Eléctrica recommends that you revise your contract.
  • © 2015 Iberdrola Distribución Eléctrica, S.A. All rights reserved.