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Standard fact sheet.

Safe electrical goods 

A guide for retailers and importers  

If you sell, import or hire electrical goods, you must ensure they are safe and will not cause harm during normal use.

What does the law say? 

The law includes most household electrical goods in a list of items that must be tested and approved before sale. These goods are called ‘declared articles’. The approval of ‘declared articles’ must be done by NSW Fair Trading, its equivalent in another Australian State or by an independent certifier.

All other electrical goods are called ‘non-declared articles’ and must be safe but do not need approval before sale. Refer to the ‘What about non-declared articles?’ heading for more details.

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How do I check if an item is approved? 

Approved electrical goods will have an ‘electrical safety approval mark’. This mark will often include a capital letter followed by a certificate number. Some small electrical goods may use other approval marks such as the trade name. Examples of NSW electrical safety approval marks are shown in the next column.

Important: Overseas Certificates of Approval and approval marks, such as the CE mark, are not acceptable in Australia.

The maximum penalty for selling, importing, hiring or exchanging ‘declared articles’ without ‘electrical safety approval marks’ and an Australian Certificate of Approval is $82,500 and/or 2 years jail for individuals or $825,000 for corporations.

Tip: Before you accept delivery of, or sell any, ‘declared articles’, ask your supplier for an Australian Certificate of Approval.

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What do approval marks look like? 

Here are examples of legally acceptable ‘electrical safety approval marks’.

Approval Scheme

Approval no. or mark*

NSW Fair Trading

NSW xxxxx

Other State Government agencies

Q xxxxx, ESO xxxxx,
V xxxxx, ESV xxxxx,
S xxxxx, T xxxxx

Regulatory Compliance Mark (RCM)

 RCM tick

SAI Global Certification Services Pty Ltd

SAI TE EA xxxxxx or
SAI SMK EA xxxxxx 
Or SAI-xxxxxx-EA

The Australian Gas Association (AGA)

AGA xxxxxx EA or
AGA xxxxxx G EA 

International Testing and Certification Services Pty Ltd

A/xxxxxx/EA

SGS Systems and Services Certification Pty Ltd

SGSEA xxxxxx or
SGS-xxxxxx-EA

SAA Approvals Pty Ltd

SAA xxxxxx EA

Testing and Certification Australia

TCA xxxxxx EA

UL International New Zealand Limited

U xxxxxx EA

TUV Rheinland Australia Pty Ltd

TUV xxxxxx EA

BSI Group (Australia and New Zealand) Pty Ltd

BSI-xxxxxx-EA

Global Mark Pty Ltd

GMA-xxxxxx-EA

Market Access (AUS) Pty Ltd trading as Certification Body Australia

CBA xxxxxx or
CBA-xxxxxx-EA

Australian Safety Approval

ASA-xxxxxx-EA


* ‘xxxxx’ can stand for any series of numbers

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What are 'declared articles'? 

Below is a list of electrical goods that the law refers to as ‘declared articles’. For more details, download the Explanatory notes for the approval and sale of electrical articles in New South Wales from the Fair Trading website.

Accessories
Appliance connectors
Control and conditioning devices
Cord line switches
Fluorescent lamp ballasts and starters
Lampholders – bayonet, edison and adaptors
Miniature overcurrent circuit breakers
Outlet devices
Plugs
Residual current devices (safety switches)
Socket outlets and adaptors
Supply flexible cords
Wall switches

Body appliances
Electric blankets
Flexible heating pads
Hair dryers
Immersion heaters
Massagers
Razors and hairclippers
Waterbed heaters

Household appliances
Bread toasters
Clothes dryers
Dishwashers
Fans
Floor polishers/scrubbers
Heaters
Irons
Jugs
Kitchen machines
Liquid heating appliances (includes rice cookers)
Microwave ovens
Portable cooking appliances (includes blenders and frying pans)
Projectors
Ranges and range hoods
Refrigerators/freezers
Sewing machines
Television receivers
Vacuum cleaners
Washing machines

Outdoor appliances
Fence energisers
Hedge trimmers
Insect electrocutors
Lawn care appliances
Swimming pool and spa equipment

Lighting
Decorative lighting
Inspection headlamps
Portable lamps
Therapeutic lamps
Christmas and festival lights

Power supplies
Battery chargers
Extra low voltage supply

Miscellaneous
Arc welding machines
Power tools
Pressure storage water heaters
Soldering irons

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What about non-declared articles? 

If you sell, import, hire or exchange electrical goods that are not ‘declared articles’, you must still ensure they are safe and comply with any relevant Australian Electrical Safety Standards. Always check with your supplier to ensure that the items comply.

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Need more information? 

You can download the Explanatory notes for the approval and sale of electrical articles in New South Wales from the Fair Trading website (search for 'approval of electrical articles'). You can also call the Fair Trading Energy and Utilities Unit directly on 02 9895 0722 or email energyapprovals@finance.nsw.gov.au

For language assistance, call 13 14 50 and ask for an interpreter in your language.

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