Thermal Imaging

What is Thermal Imaging?

What is thermal imaging?

Facilities managers and business owners have a responsibility to ensure that all electrical wiring complies with regulations. This helps maintain a safe working environment for employees, avoiding the accidents and injuries that can occur as a result of overloading, deterioration or damages that may appear in electrical installations over time. Failure to comply to these regulations, specifically the EICR, can lead to heavy fines and at its most serious – prosecution.

Quicklight has a number of ways it can help customers with fixed wire testing including EICR testing, Emergency light testing and maintenance and PAT testing. One of the most efficient methods we use in these areas is thermal image inspection, technology that helps detect ‘hot spots’ before they become a major problem.

Traditionally used by firefighters to identify areas of heat through smoke and darkness, Thermal imaging converts heat into an electrical signal to display differences in temperature as a visible light. The visibility of the light seen is completely dependent on temperature, a brighter light means a warmer temperature and lower light means cooler temperatures.

What is Thermal Imaging?

Why is thermal imaging used in electrical testing?

Identifying temperature visually provides valuable data when undertaking electrical testing because it visualises problem areas that the untrained eye can’t pick up. A circuit board could look fine to the human eye but a thermal image that shows a specific section of the circuit filled with bright light clearly highlights overheating, which could lead to major electrical faults.

This helps detect a wide range of electrical faults including issues with fuse panels, transformers, faulty electrical equipment and sockets. Identifying these issues and investigating them further means the Quicklight team can work out what is causing the problem. We have used thermal imaging to identify load imbalances, damaged insulations or fuses, corroded connections and more. Often these areas are highlighted before they become a major problem, for example finding a damaged fuse and fixing it early dramatically reduces the risk of fire. Preventative maintenance can save businesses money and meet legal requirements.

What is Thermal Imaging?

How can thermal imaging help your business?

Another advantage to using thermal imaging is the lack of disruption when in use. There is no point of contact with any live devices which means our engineers can scan the electrical equipment without having to turn it off or put themselves in danger.

When undertaking electrical testing for our clients we offer a flexible solution that is tailored to specific needs and requirements. Despite this tailored service we are always likely to include thermal imaging because of the key data it provides. We recommend carrying out this test alongside EICR testing, emergency light testing and maintenance and PAT testing for a full service that covers all eventualities.

Contact us today by calling 0800 917 721 or emailing [email protected] to discuss how we can help you.

‘Are you fully compliant?’

“The mindset of doing things as cheaply as possible must stop”.

Last month’s review of building regulations in the UK contains a number of damming statements like the one above, the headline message being that regulations are not “fit for purpose” with former Chair of the UK Health and Safety Executive, Dame Judith Elizabeth Hackitt stating;

“It has become clear that the whole system of regulation, covering what is written down and the way in which it is enacted in practice, is not fit for purpose, leaving room for those who want to take shortcuts to do so.”

The focus on the importance of regulations and compliance has certainly intensified over the last few months and anyone managing a building needs to take notice. The risk of heavy fines and bad press is now too large to ignore.

But don’t panic….

There are a number of ways that you can ensure that you are fully compliant and Quicklight can help with many of these including emergency lighting, fire alarm, compliance and fixed wire testing. Companies have to supply reassurance that testing has been completed every 5 years which leads to many businesses mass testing everything when the deadline comes up. Not only is this not the most reliable method from a safety point of view, it can also be a very costly way of doing things.

Quicklight however has a process that allows us to check at least 20% of electrical installations or circuits every year, meaning we can identify what has or hasn’t been done and complete the work in an efficient and cost effective manner, spreading payments across the 5 years. We aim to make this even more palatable using economies of scale, we can batch together other regulatory tests such as emergency lighting, fire alarms, PAT testing and fire extinguishers at the same time to create a lower combined cost.

We also have the latest technology to help with this process, for example our thermal image camera can take a photo of a board and mark up which circuits have been tested each year so the work can be continued into the following year. It can also identify “hot spots” that may become problematic in the future.

Keeping on top of the paperwork….

Companies are required by law to regularly test every item of electrical equipment used in the workplace. Our trained PAT (portable appliance testing) specialists use the latest equipment to test all electrical appliances to inform an unbiased report and list of your electrical assets. If any of your electrical equipment fails, Quicklight notifies you right away. We use a shared cloud system to give customers access to compliance certificates at any time; a system that has proved invaluable! We’ve all been unable to find a piece of paperwork at the exact moment we need it so we hold a copy of everything as well as putting it on our cloud, the NICEIC (National Inspection Council for Electrical Installation Contracting) cloud and giving a copy to clients.

On top of this, Quicklight also now offers fire alarm, emergency alarm and fire extinguisher testing. These services can be selected alongside our other services, giving us the opportunity to create tailored services and arrangements for each client. We are particularly proud of our fire alarm and fire extinguisher testing which are all areas that need to become a priority for Facilities Managers and others in charge of building maintenance.

Help with funding for remedial work

One area that always puts Facilities Managers off testing is the remedial work that it identifies as companies can’t always afford to get these smaller problems fixed. However not fixing them can be seen as negligence, the fine for which is much more costly than the work to fix the issue. Quicklight can help fund this by producing a plan that will comply with HSE (Health and Safety Executive) guidelines and rules. The HSE is are aware that issues can’t be fixed overnight and Quicklight can help you to produce evidence that remedial issues are being fixed in a manner that is cost effective for you.

Whilst there is no doubt that “the mindset of doing things as cheaply as possible must stop”, cheaply doesn’t have to mean expensive and Quicklight can help companies comply and make changes in a controlled, legal and effective way.

Contact us today to discuss any compliance requirements or concerns you may have. You can also call 0800 917 721 or visit http://www.quicklight.co.uk/index.html to find out more about our other services or email [email protected]

Capital Free LED

It’s no secret that many people are put off making the switch to LED lighting due to the ingrained perception that is a complicated and highly expensive lighting option. Quicklight can reassure you that the reality is actually the opposite.

There are a number of statistics and reasons to switch to LED, including the fact that an LED light generally uses 80% less energy than an equivalent incandescent or halogen bulb, LED lighting is kinder to the environment and it typically has a longer lifespan than other types of lighting. What’s more, whilst LED lamps cost more to buy than normal bulbs, they cost much less to run. So, the idea is to invest up front and save on electricity bills in the future, creating a very cost effective lighting option. If you haven’t already, take a look at this infographic which highlights the many, significant benefits if switching to LED lighting.

The reality is however that most of the people reading this will have heard these arguments before. Even though everyone knows LED is the right choice, it can still be a daunting one. There are however a number of options that aren’t discussed as often that could make switching to LED less overwhelming including, thanks to the banks recognising the importance of energy saving, capital free LED.

All high street banks and financial institutions have recognised that green energy is of utmost importance and are therefore prepared to fund these lighting projects at low rates. This can still be a complicated process to negotiate but Quicklight is happy to negotiate with the banks for you, ensuring that the loan is secured at the lowest possible rate. Most organisations will supply company cars, PCP and HP, so why not with other capital like lighting?

What’s more, we are able to offer maximum flexibility by using the product and manufacturer of your choice. Essentially, we can do all the hard work for you by providing a full, stress-free turnkey service, which includes design, project management and financial management – no capital outlay!

It is essential for organisations to opt for a LED specialist to implement this change. We work with several partners to ensure that we can offer a bespoke solution for each client, handling maintenance and gradually implement the changes at a pace that suits you. Click here to find out more about our work with GE, a partner that has developed a comprehensive LED indoor fixture range that meets the market need. When asked about working with Quicklight, Joanne Martin, GE’s General Manager, Strategic Accounts, Europe states;

“Quicklight provides a professional, first class installation service – often going above and beyond its remit to ensure the transition between old and new lighting runs as smoothly as possible.”

Contact us today to discuss capital free LED and any other LED requirements you may have. Call 0800 917 5721 or email [email protected]

 

Working with Vodafone and TBS for total workforce mobility

Find out how Quicklight transformed its business, adding transparency and real value for clients and helping engineers to work more efficiently with the introduction of a new paperless system…

We are proud of the work we undertake in all areas and over the last 25 years we have refined the way we operate in lighting maintenance, compliance and across all our other services. However, there is always room to increase efficiency and we recently undertook one of our biggest projects yet, working with Vodafone and TBS to implement a total workforce mobility system.

By giving engineers and customers access to a mobile system and app, we have completely transformed site visits, making our engineers more efficient and giving our customers easy access to key information. The app can log visit details, place orders and overall means a significant reduction in paperwork which is good news for everyone.

As one of our Lighting Engineers, Jack Mitchell explains:

“A typical day for our team can include travel between five and ten sites from builders yards to estate agents to retail, which all adds up to a lot of admin”

As Quicklight’s Managing Director Richard McCabe explains:

“We want our engineers to make repairs not fill out paperwork! We wanted to create a system that allowed us to be as efficient as we could be and to deliver the best customer service possible.”

We approached Vodafone and their partner TBS and worked together to create the new system. Vodafone advised us on which services and security we needed to guarantee the functionality was not only effortless for those using the system but also secure. TBS provided the mobile applications needed to create a simple but concise design.

Our engineers can now manage their workload by:

  • placing quick orders on the system
  • costing new parts quickly
  • presenting the client with a record of when the engineer arrived and left
  • an easy-to-read customer record of parts ordered and the cost of each item

As Jacks says “Every job is different, but using Vodafone’s total workforce mobility we know what each site entails, so that makes our job ten times easier”

And Richard adds:

“We estimate it’s made the engineers an hour more productive everyday”.

We are justifiably proud of this project and the impact it has made on customer satisfaction, productivity and our internal systems. We actually re-worked our CRM system as a result of the work undertaken, ensuring that all elements were able to work together.

The resulting paperless systems is an important step for the company, giving us the latest technology and ability to take on new and exciting projects but at the same time reflects our commitment to existing clients and our determination to continuous improvement in the business.

You can see Jack and Richard talking about the project in this case study video produced by Vodafone:

You can also contact us today about any requirements you may have, whether you need help to manage your transition to LED, to make sure your business is compliant or helping with your lighting maintenance. Call 0800 917 5721 or email [email protected]

A day in the life of a Quicklight Lighting Apprentice

George Barron Quicklight Lighting Apprentice

George Barron Quicklight Lighting Apprentice

The Quicklight Apprenticeship Programme offers aspiring electricians the chance to gain hands on experience in the electrical industry. The programme provides the opportunity to work alongside a team of experienced electricians and engineers, building a strong portfolio towards a City and Guilds Level 3 electrical qualification.

Over the past 10 years, Quicklight’s scheme has enjoyed great success, with many apprentices going on to qualify as certified electricians and engineers.

George Barron is a 17-year-old apprentice, currently 6 months into the programme.

“I’ve always enjoyed doing electrical projects. I did work experience with an electrician and it was then that I decided that this was the industry for me,” George says.

The four-year apprenticeships vary in format, depending on the college; however, a typical apprenticeship consists of four days on the job, with a day spent studying. George attends York College and says that the academic element focuses on areas such as health and safety, cable calculations, regulatory requirements, wiring and cable containment. Because the college element is only one day a week, George believes that the apprenticeship scheme will suit anyone who enjoys hands on learning.

“In a classroom you don’t get as much from it. I wanted hands-on experience,” he explains. “No two days are the same. If you get a call out, your plans can change at a moment’s notice and I really like that.”

George points out that assessments are conducted as and when the supervisor is confident that an apprentice is ready, which alleviates some of the pressure that students often feel in more academic environments with set deadlines.

Undertaking a four-year commitment is not for the faint of heart. George says that there are challenges, both in the classroom and in the field.

“I’ve found the varied start times challenging. We often start really early. In college, I’d say I find cable calculations the most challenging aspect. You need to know all of the different things that can affect the cable and have a strong understanding of the regulations.”

Apprentices work alongside experienced electricians and engineers, but George says that the electricians he works with have become more than just supervisors.

“We’re all close and we get along really well,” he explains. “If there are ever any problems, we can talk about it. It’s like a family and it’s nice to be a part of it. You’ve always got help, all you need to do is ask.”

If you are interested in becoming an apprentice with Quicklight more details of the programme can be found here.

Using LEDs: Does Quality Pay?

It’s no surprise that our customers often ask us to replace traditional lighting with LED fittings. The benefits of using LED lighting are obvious: they offer energy savings of up to 80% and can reduce your carbon footprint by up to 70%, when coupled with smart controls. LED products also have an extremely long lifetime which, in turn, leads to reduced maintenance costs. This infographic shows why it’s a great time to switch to LED.

Not all LED products, however, are equal. Many manufacturers promote LED products as a ‘fit and forget’ solution that will last a lifetime, but cheap and cheerful LEDs can fail to live up to these claims. To avoid this, we always recommend that our customers source good quality LED lights from a reputable manufacturer that offer a warranty. In our experience, this will ensure that your chosen LEDs will meet their working life claims.

We offer a full lighting refitting service, whether you’ve already purchased your LED lighting or would like us to both source and install it. We’ve fostered good relationships with all the major lighting manufacturers over the years. As a result, we can offer informed specialist advice about which LED products are best to use for your industry requirements. We can let you know which LEDs will meet your needs in terms of light temperature and lumen output, amongst other considerations.

There is a wide choice of LEDs on the market that we can confidently recommend. GE Lighting offers various ranges, including Precise™ and EnergySmart™, which offer a combination of high quality performance and energy efficiency, alongside their competitively-priced GE LED Start range. Learn more here.

When refitting your offices or retail environments, we properly dispose of all lights, improving your green credentials. We remove and recycle all lights under the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Directive. We are a registered waste carrier and fully accredited with the International Standard for Environmental Management Systems (ISO14001).

 

Contact us about our refitting and installation services.

The Branch Manager’s Guide to our Lighting Maintenance Service

We remain proactive regarding your lighting maintenance by providing a regular eight-week service visit, and offering an innovative ‘pay as you go’ business model. Read on to find out more about the benefits of our approach for you and your branches.

How does Quicklight’s lighting maintenance service work?

We provide regular eight-week service visits, with the option for urgent callouts if necessary. Our policy is to provide a ‘first-time fix’ whenever possible, so our highly-trained engineers are able to complete most jobs on the spot.

What are the benefits for branch managers?

Our lighting maintenance service is simple and cost-effective.

We offer consistent pricing no matter where you are in the UK, making it easier for you to control your branch budget and allocate funds to sites that need more maintenance work than others. We do this by agreeing a ‘menu-parts’ price list. This is a list of all the lamps and parts we may need to fit while looking after your lighting maintenance programme, and the price we charge for doing so.

We make it easier to control individual branch expenditure, by providing an electronic report after every eight-week service visit. This allows you to see exactly what you get for your money. If we identify any work that takes your branch over a pre-agreed ceiling limit, then we always seek prior authorisation before carrying out the work.

We are able to complete most jobs on the spot, by employing highly-trained engineers that are qualified to fit additional light fittings, and replace sockets or control switches. Also, each of our vans is equipped with an on-board Quicklift, which allows the engineers to reach lights up to eight metres (about 26 feet) in height. Having this equipment on-board means that the engineers don’t have to come back again later or pass on hire charges for specialised equipment.

Here are seven more reasons to work with us.

In the past I had to contact my head office to request a maintenance visit, is that still the case?

No. We provide regular eight-week service visits without you having to call your head office. That makes life easier for you and easier for your head office, and ensures that the lighting for your branch is regularly maintained.

If I need something done urgently, can I still request a callout?

Yes. However, by taking a proactive approach and providing eight-week service visits, the need to request ad hoc maintenance visits should be dramatically reduced. If you need to request a callout, you can phone our help desk free of charge on 0800 917 5721.

How much do you charge for a call out?

We don’t charge for callouts. To keep things as simple as possible, we only charge for any parts that we replace. The price for the part will include fitting. You will have previously agreed a ‘menu-parts’ price list with us. This is a list of all the lamps and parts we may need to fit while looking after your lighting maintenance programme, and the price we charge for doing so. You will also have a ‘floor limit’ set for your branch. We will always get approval for the work we do before we do it.

What else can you maintain?

We provide security and outside light maintenance, as well as maintenance services for illuminated signage. We also offer a number of electrical testing services including EICR, PAT testing and fire alarm system testing. We can also perform complete refits on a project basis for customers who want to upgrade to LED lighting, for example.

 

Contact us about our lighting maintenance and electrical testing services.

Three reasons to give our low-risk lighting maintenance service a try

Maintaining your facilities can be a risky business; with so many third parties to manage and contracts to monitor, it can be easy to lose sight of where you’re receiving value – and where you’re not.

At Quicklight we aim to take the risk out of lighting maintenance – offering a service that’s proactive and good value for money. Here are three reasons to give our low-risk service a try:

1. Trial period – evaluate our service first

We work very successfully with customers by offering them the ability to try our service in a few regional branches before rolling it out nationwide. Working this way helps customers understand what to expect when we run their lighting maintenance programmes and fully assess the value of the service we provide. Why is this low risk? Our approach puts you in control; if you are not happy, you can simply carry on as before. In practice though, as customers experience our service first hand and discover the benefits, they often ask us to extend the service to include more locations.

Lighting maintenance services UK

2. Flexible terms – contract or no contract, whatever you prefer

While contracts may be designed to protect both parties, sometimes they just cause problems for frustrated customers not receiving fair service levels. Traditional FM service providers tend to insist on three year, five year or even longer maintenance contracts, which puts the risk on the customer.

At Quicklight we recognised this frustration early on, and rather than allow contracts to dictate and possibly damage customer relationships, we decided to operate on a more flexible basis. Unlike most lighting maintenance providers, we won’t tie you into a contract – unless you prefer to work that way. If we can meet your needs and you would prefer to operate within a contract, we can provide a service level agreement (SLA) for you.

3. Proactive servicing – reduce the ‘noise’

We make it as easy as possible for our customers to do business with us by providing a proactive service. We visit your sites every four to eight weeks to test your lamps and pinpoint any issues. Not only does this save your facilities manager chasing up service calls, it means that lamps are often changed before employees have the chance to spot them – reducing the number of calls to head office with complaints about lighting. Our engineers carry all the necessary stock and access equipment on board their vans to provide a ‘first time fix’. And what’s more, we don’t charge extra for using the Quicklift.

Quicklight lighting maintenance engineer

What have you got to lose? Book your risk-free trial today.

Read more:

Everything you need to know about Quicklight’s commercial lighting maintenance service

Seven steps a Quicklight lighting maintenance engineer follows on site

 

Why choose Quicklight for your electrical compliance work?

If you are one of our lighting maintenance customers, you’ll be aware that we also provide a comprehensive range of electrical testing services. Over the last couple of years, this side of our business has grown substantially as customers realise they’ll get the same high quality of service – we are simply trusted to do a good job, whether it’s lighting maintenance or electrical testing.

Electrical testing services

As with our lighting maintenance service, we aim to make the process of compliance ‘hassle free’. Here are five good reasons to give our electrical testing services a try:

  • It represents good value for money – we offer a nationwide programme that will allow you to benefit from economies of scale.
  • It saves you time – simplify the communication process by only having one contractor to coordinate the work.
  • It’s convenient – we’ll hold all your certification in one place and send it to you electronically as and when you need it.
  • It’s flexible – we’ll work around you to minimise disruption to your premises.
  • We are a one-stop-shop – our highly trained engineers are also qualified to perform remedial work if necessary, making you more compliant after the first visit.

Why not put us to the test?

Before moving towards a national programme, put us to work at a handful of your sites and we’ll show you just how easy it is to do business with us.

For more information on our electrical testing services, visit our website or call 0800 9175 721.

Read more

Quicklight wins national electrical testing contract with FirstGroup plc

Six reasons to use a national supplier for all your electrical testing needs

 

 

Have you got what it takes to lead a team of lighting maintenance engineers?

One of the things we are proud of here at Quicklight is recognising the potential of our employees and encouraging them to progress in their chosen careers as much as possible.

A good example of this is team leader Paul Bowden. When he’s not training for triathlons and half marathons or restoring his new home, Paul leads a team of lighting maintenance engineers in the North of England, covering South and North Yorkshire. Paul started working for the company four years ago. Two years into his career, we encouraged him to apply for the position of team leader.

We spoke to Paul about his work and asked him about the support he was given to develop into the role. Here’s what he had to say:

  • What are you responsible for as a lighting maintenance team leader?

It’s my job to act as mentor and line manager for the engineers working in my area. I look after the general running of the territory – making sure customers are happy with the lighting maintenance service we provide and that everything runs smoothly. Having had the experience before, I’m often the engineers’ first port of call for technical assistance, helping them with any issues they might have.

  • Did you have any leadership experience before?

No, but I received plenty of support and training when I was promoted. I attended an internal leadership course to help me develop my management style. My direct line manager is great and provides plenty of on-going support in this area, offering me advice on how best to manage things. I also meet with my peers on a regular basis, so we can share common experiences and learn from each other.

  • What’s it like working away from head office?

Considering the company has over a hundred engineers working remotely, communication is very good and I never feel isolated. I attend meetings at the office in Thatcham every three to four months or so, which is great for catching up with staff based at head office and meeting people face-to-face who you might speak with regularly on the phone. Part of my role is also to feed information up and down the chain of communication so that we provide the best service possible.

  • What would you say to someone looking for a career here?

For me, it’s not a chore to go get up and go to work in the morning – I really enjoy my role. I’d say if you are looking for an organisation where hard work is rewarded, and I don’t just mean financially, then this is the company for you. You are able to get out what you put in – if you put in the effort, the rewards are there.

Team leader Paul Bowden with his youngest son on holiday in Disneyland

Team leader Paul Bowden with his youngest son on holiday in Disneyland

If you are interested in a lighting maintenance or electrical testing career at Quicklight, visit our jobs page online or speak to John Hutchinson on 01969 625 500 for an informal chat.

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5 minutes with…Nicky Honey, Operations Director at Quicklight