AS/NZS 5033 & 5139 Update

AS/NZS 5033:2014

This standard has been undergoing an amendment to tighten the requirements of the DC isolators, after a number of fires and failures of the DC isolator in Australia. The amendment has undergone one round of public comment, and has since been revised. Just to create more confusion, due to technical requirements of Standards Australia, the original amendment is now being split into two amendments as some parts will be applied immediately on publication, with the second amendment containing the provisions that will apply after a transition period of 12 months.

 These amendments will be known as AS/NZS 5033:2014 Amd 1, and AS/NZS 5033:2014 Amd 2. They will retain the 2014 date. These amendments are going out for further public comment soon.

 To further add to the confusion, remember that these standards are not compulsory in New Zealand yet.  AS/NZS 5033:2012 is still the cited standard, and is likely to remain this way until late 2018. However, I would highly recommend using the new DC isolators once they become available, as they will be more reliable.

AS/NZS 5033:2020?

Just to add even more confusion to the 5033 standard, Standards Australia are proposing opening a new project for general amendment to 5033. This will result in a new dated standard –  it is likely to be 2020 before it is published (and a few more years before it is cited in NZ)

The committee will review all comments that were made during the last 5033:2014 Amendment public comment stage, that were rejected because of the specific nature of the original amendment (it was not a general amendment).

If there are specific areas that you would like modified in 5033, please email Greg before the end of January 2018 with the details – as they need to be included in the project proposal to Standards Australia. 

AS/NZS 5139 Battery Storage Standard

The draft standard was rejected at the public comment stage. The standard is being redrafted to take into account the objections. The main change is that battery systems that are manufacturer assembled and that are also certified to international standards will be allowed to be installed in certain locations inside a residence (the draft only permitted external installations). The draft is also being restructured to make it easier for an installer to follow, with separate sections for pre-assembled, approved battery systems; installer designed and assembled lithium battery systems (or non approved systems); and installer designed and assembled lead acid (and other) battery systems.

As this is a major revision of the draft, it will have at least another round of public comment. I do not expect that this standard will be published before the end of 2018.

Until the standard is published, SEANZ recommends using the CEC Australia Battery Installation Guidelines as the current industry best practice. These are mandatory in Australia for CEC accredited installers but only recommended in New Zealand.

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