We attended an emergency call out over the weekend where the customer was reporting "all my power is off and theres a horrible smell in the house". So it was hardly any surprise when we arrived that the problem was in the consumer unit, and this photo shows very clearly what can happen: [caption id="attachment_2928" align="alignleft" width="331"] Burned Out Consumer Unit RCD[/caption] [caption id="attachment_2929" align="alignright" width="322"] Failed RCD - Consumer Unit Fire[/caption] This electrical fire was the result of poor connections when the consumer unit was installed, and is a clear indication of what can happen when the parts of consumer units are from a mixture of different manufacturers. Although some manufacturers parts will fit perfectly well, in this case the copper bars (bus bars) at the bottom which carry the electricity from the main switch or RCD to the circuit breakers did not properly reach in to the termination so was not clamped fully making a poor connection which kept overheating each time the family used the electricity. It was even more of a problem when they used the higher powered item like the shower or cooker - it finally caught fire when both these items were in use at the same time! This could have been avoided if the landlord had got an electrician to complete a thorough ELECTRICAL INSTALLATION CONDITION REPORT.