What is an Electrical Certificate of Compliance?


An Electrical Certificate of Compliance (ECOC) or electrical coc is a legal document that verifies an electrical installation is compliant on the date of inspection with all the legal requirements as stipulated in the Electrical Installations Occupational Health and Safety Act of South Africa.

We all wish that our electrical installations could last a lifetime but this is unfortunately not the case. All electrical installations require regular inspections to ensure they are safe and meet the minimum standards as laid out in the Occupational Health and Safety Act.

After your property has been inspected, you will be issued with an electrical compliance certificate. This certificate proves that your property complies with regulation and will allow the continued transfer of your property when selling your home.

An electrical certificate of compliance when issued ensures that:

  • All your electrical circuits are healthy and functioning correctly.
  • Your premises is free from any potential electric shock risks and fire hazards.
  • Your premises is free from any defective electrical work.
  • That your premises has been correctly earthed and bonded.

When an electrician inspects your property, tests are carried out on wiring and fixed electrical equipment to ensure they are safe and free from defects. 

Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

How do I get an electrical compliance certificate?

You can only get an electrical compliance certificate from a registered electrician who must inspect and test your electrical installation and ensure that it complies with the legal requirements as stipulated in the Electrical Installations Occupational Health and Safety Act of South Africa

How much does it cost to get an electrical compliance certificate?

The cost of an electrical compliance certificate depends upon the work required to fix your electrical installation. If the electrician finds no faults, the cost of the electrical certificate can range from R850 to R1,500. If faults are found, the cost could range from R1,000 to R15,000 or more.

How long is an electrical compliance certificate valid for?

In South Africa, an electrical compliance certificate (COC) is valid for the lifetime of the electrical installation until such time as alterations to the installation are made. Therefore, a new electrical certificate must be obtained when alterations or additions are made to the electrical installation.

How long does it take to get an electrical certificate?

This depends on the size of the property, the number of electrical circuits and if issues are identified during the electrical inspection. An electrical installation with no faults can take 2-5 hours, while an installation with faults could take several days to complete.

Is an electrical certificate a legal requirement?

An electrical certificate is a legal requirement drafted by the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) that is placed upon the owner of a property who must ensure their electrical installation is safe and does not pose a threat to any human and animal or the property.

Who should perform the work for an electrical certificate of compliance inspection?

The electrical certificate of compliance inspection should be done by a qualified and accredited person, such as a registered electrician. The electrician will need to validate that the electrics conform to the South African wiring code (SANS 10142-1) – Requirements for Electrical Installations.

Transfer attorneys are required by law to insist that Electrical Certificates of Compliance have been signed off by a fully qualified and registered electrician. This certificate will also ensure you are covered by insurance in the event that someone is shocked by your electrical installation. Also if something should happen such as an electrical shock your insurance may not cover you without a valid electrical certificate. Take the following steps so you know you are not wasting your money or taking a risk:

What work is carried out during an electrical certificate of compliance inspection?

An electrician will carry out the following work when performing an inspection:

  • Check that the premises is adequately earthed and bonded.
  • Ensure that your electrical main switch is compliant with regulation.
  • Ensure that switches, sockets and light fittings are still functioning correctly. The electrician may identify that some items will need replacing such as older plug sockets, light switches and cables.
  • Check the type of wiring system and inspect its safety condition. E.g. Older cables were often covered in rubber, lead and fabric, and these cables would need to be replaced. Modern cables use longer-lasting pvc insulation.
  • Check your fusebox and ensure it is fitted with a suitable residual-current circuit breaker (Trip switch)
  • Check that your switch box is labelled adequately and has the correct warning signs.
  • Check for damage, wear and tear or any other deterioration to your electrical installation.
  • Ensure you are still using the electrical installation as intended and have not compromised the installation in any way.

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