Helen's Garden Renovation Project

Sunday 3 May 2009

How to put electricity into a Fawt Nova Octagonal Greenhouse

Filed under: Greenhouse,Progress — Helen @ 1:18 pm

I can report that the greenhouse is now wired up to the mains. An electrician who is a friend of one of my engineering students did it a week ago. If anyone else has a Fawt Nova Octagonal Greenhouse and is wondering how to wire it up, have a look at my photograph.

Greenhouse wiring with control box and one double plug point

Greenhouse wiring with control box and one double plug point

You can see that the armoured cable comes in through the floor (it would be better if it had been put nearer the wall when the base was laid but never mind) and goes into a control box. The control box has one circuit for lighting and one for the plug points. It also has a RCD. I have a RCD set to the same sensitivity in the main consumer unit, so if there was a fault, either of them could trip. One of the three cables coming out of the control box goes up to the power point directly above it. The power point is an outdoor use one because I could easily get water on it when working there and I don’t want to keep tripping the RCD (or even worse, finding out that the RCD on this particular occasion doesn’t work!) The power point rests on a small piece of wood so that the cover can close. The cable coming out of the left of the control box goes to a second double power socket. Having four power points is useful because I may want to plug in a few propagators as well as a heater. The cable to the right goes to the light switch. The light switch is just above the door frame. It was quite hard to find a place big enough to attach it so, but I can easily reach the switch here and I think it works well.

Greenhouse lighting detail

Greenhouse lighting detail

The lightbulb is attached to a holder in the centre of the roof.

Greenhouse with lightbulb

Greenhouse with lightbulb

Here is a picture of the whole thing (apart from the roof).

Greenhouse with wiring in place

Greenhouse with wiring in place

It was not an easy job to do the wiring. My electrician took about six hours, including wiring the other end of the cable to the consumer unit in the garage. He has put an isolator switch in the garage so when I’m on holiday I can switch the electricity off, in case a burglar comes into my garden and plugs lots of really powerful appliances into the greenhouse sockets, thus running up a huge electricity bill. I thought it was worth writing about this job in some detail because I think other people might want to know how to wire up a greenhouse like this one and have it still looking nice afterwards.

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2 responses to “How to put electricity into a Fawt Nova Octagonal Greenhouse”

  1. Adrian Bailey says:

    Hi Helen
    Your webpage has been most helpful to me as I am about to buy a greenhouse and wish to put in power. I shall do this myself and then have the job certified by an electrician. Would you please let me know the following:-
    1. Does the input box have an RCD and two isolating switches for power and lighting?
    2. What are the makes of the input box and the double power sockets?
    3. Is the cable from the control box to the power sockets the same type of armoured cable as for the input (underground) cable?

    I hope you are enjoying your greenhouse. Mine will be for cacti.
    Best wishes,
    Adrian.

  2. Helen says:

    Hi Adrian,
    Glad to be of assistance!
    1 The input box has an RCD, an isolating switch for power and an isolating switch for lighting. It also has a third switch – I forget what that does. It might be to turn off the whole thing, or it might be to turn off another circuit, should I wish to make the system more complicated later.
    2 The input box is made by Alto and the power sockets and light switch are made by Get. They have the code IP55.
    3 The cable from the control box to the power sockets is not armoured cable. Armoured cable is very stiff to work with and you need special connection joints so you would only use it where the armour is necessary. As far as I know, the cable is just like the cable you would wire up a house with.

    I hope that helps, and good luck with your greenhouse and cacti!
    Kind regards, Helen

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