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Lighting - Building Regulations

If you are carrying out electrical work and fixing lighting to the outside of your house in England and Wales, you will have to follow new building regulations rules.

You should either use an installer who is registered with the competent person scheme or make an application to your local authority's building control department or approved inspectors.

It is now a general aim to make our buildings as energy efficient as possible. You are required to install efficient electric lighting to your house in specific circumstances including:

  • When your dwelling has been extended
  • When your existing lighting system is being replaced as part of re-wiring works

An example of efficient lighting is where reasonable provision should be made to enable effective control and/or use of efficient lamps such that:

  • Either, lamp capacity does not exceed 150 Watts per light fitting and the lighting automatically switches off when there is enough daylight and when it is not required at night;
  • or the lighting fittings have sockets that can only be used with lamps having an efficacy greater than 40 lumens per circuit-Watt.

Please see Approved Document L1B1 in the main Building Regulations section of this site for further guidance.

External Lights

If you are installing an external light which is supplied from your electrical system and fixed to the exterior surface of your house then you should ensure that reasonable provisions are made to enable effective control and/or use of energy efficient lamps. Two options for achieving this are:

  • Installing a lamp with a capacity which does not exceed 150W per light fitting and the lighting automatically switches off both when there is enough daylight and also when it is not required at night
  • Ensuring that the lighting fittings you use have sockets that can only be used with lamps having an energy efficacy greater than 40 lumens per circuit-watt. 

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    1. https://www.planningportal.co.uk/applications/building-control-applications/building-control/approved-documents/part-l-conservation-of-fuel-and-power/approved-document-l1b-conservation-of-fuel-and-power-in-existing-dwellings

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    The Planning Portal is delivered by PortalPlanQuest Limited which is a joint venture between TerraQuest Solutions Limited and the Department for Levelling Up, Housing & Communities. All content © 2022 Planning Portal.