On a recent job I decided to try out and review an MCG metal consumer unit. It looks a lot better than the one I took out but was it up to the job?
Prices Are Down
Well done to the CU manufacturers and suppliers! It’s good to see that the price of metal consumer units has now come down to comparable to insulated ones. I’m very surprised that it happened so quickly. I hear that it was probably due to MK dropping their split load RCD ranges and the electrical suppliers had to follow with best prices for other makes.
Up To The Job?
I normally prefer to use Hagar for domestic electrical installations but recently tried an MCG to review from CEF. This one was a 2+5+5 MCG split load consumer unit, 2x high integrity ways, plus 2x RCD and including 10x MCBs all for under £80 plus VAT.
I was impressed that there was hardly any difference in build quality between the MCG and Hager CUs. Apart from the main switch being on the left (rather than the right), the biggest difference is the price, where Hagar would have cost about £20 more for only a 5+5 CU without the breakers.
Unlike some of the cheaper units, the MCG box was solid and the MCBs didn’t all skew to the right when I torqued up the terminals, and the lid fitted fine. I also found the breakers, main switch and RCDs to be on par with Hagar, Wylex etc. . In fact, better than Wylex because it’s impossible to install the breaker terminal connection the wrong side of the bussbar pin. The bussbars were well insulated and easily fitted into the bottom of the MCBs and the internal linking tails were all flexible (and not solid) which I prefer.
There are top, bottom and rear knockouts (they took quite a bit of knocking but eventually came out without denting the box!) and blanks are supplied but no grommet strip for the rear entry, so it’s worth having some in your toolbox. And just like all the other metal CUs that I’ve come across, they give no way of fire sealing any holes.
I’ll give 8/10 for this MCG metal consumer unit. Good build quality and value for money on the price. I’d be interested to know if you’ve used MCG or can recommend any other makes of metal consumer units in this range. I believe MCG are only available from CEF in the UK.