Hi,

I'm at the initial planning stages of a renovation & home automation system installation, and I'm trying to identify all of the regulations (building, wiring, etc.) that might apply. Is there a list somewhere?

Based on the general stuff that I've seen (I'm originally from the US and now live near Dublin), it looks like there isn't much difference between the Irish regulations and the UK regulations. However, from an installation point of view, there seems to be a world of difference between how things are done in Ireland (or at least were in the past when the house was built) and how they were/are done in France (My father-in-law is French and worked as an electrician/EE in industrial applications and automation control systems).

I'm reasonably familiar with the regulations in the US, and have found the Reader's Digest DIY manual invaluable in understanding how the different systems in use in Ireland and the UK work relative to their US counterparts, but I'm not a professional builder or electrician. The last thing I want to do is have to rip out a bunch of wiring/cabling when/if we decide to sell the place here in order for it to pass code.

I'm considering purchasing the following books:

National Rules for Electrical Installations (3rd Edition 2006)
from http://www.etci.ie/publications/onlinestore.html
IEE on Site Guide (BS 7671:2001)
and the "IEE Wiring Regulations: Explained & Illustrated", "Design & Verification of Electrical Installations" and "IEE Wiring Regulations: Inspection, Testing & Certification" books by Brian Scaddan

Are they the right ones/worth it?

Also, I haven't seen anything covering the fire implications/recommendations of some of the wiring and lighting installations here. Can someone comment on these? For example, I know that it is recommended practice to box-in with drywall the locations of downlighters installed in ground floor ceilings so that the lighting installations don't act as chimneys to the upper floors and thus the recommended minimum fire survivability time (~30 minutes) of the upper floor. From extrapolation, it would seem that similar care would need to be taking with the main wiring trunks used for control/audio cables and CAT5e--especially since there doesn't appear to be any additional insulation present in any of the ceilings/walls of my house. How have other people addressed this?

One other thing I'd like to do is run as much conduit as I can to make replacement, additions and other changes to the wiring as easy as possible. This isn't done much in residential construction in the US to my knowledge, and it certainly wasn't done with the house here in Ireland. From the pictures I've seen here and other places, it doesn't seem like this is the norm. Is there a reason?

A final question relates directly to the types of electrical devices you can install in bathrooms here. The rules are the most restrictive I've ever seen, but do they also prohibit the installation of an LCD display panel? I want to have a kiosk type touch display located on the wall opposite the shower/tub. Has anyone ever done this sort of thing with either their own or commercial automation systems?

Any thoughts, comments or feedback would be appreciated. I tried searching for the above in both google and the archives, but I didn't see these questions specifically addressed.

Thanks in advance,

ast