Test and Tag is a generic name given to the process of visually inspecting and electrically testing in-service electrical equipment for personal safety. Colloquially, it is also referred to as; tagging, test tag, test and tag, electrical tagging, appliance testing, portable appliance test or lead tagging.
The aim of test and tagging is to determine if the appliance is electrically safe for personal use. The appliance undergoes a visual inspection for defects such as damage or missing components and a number of electrical tests to measure earth continuity, insulation resistance and polarity.
In Australia and New Zealand, this is done using the Standard; AS/NZS 3760:2010 “In-service inspection and testing of electrical equipment” as a reference document.
Because there is a document published on this topic by a reputable source, regulatory bodies that enforce State and Federal Occupational Health and Workplace Safety Acts and Electrical Safety Acts and Regulations within Australia and New Zealand, may list or encourage the use of this Standard as a minimum requirement.
Test and Tagging is sometimes referred to as PAT Testing. This terminology was first used in the United Kingdom A Portable Appliance Test or PAT, is a process by which portable electrical appliances are routinely checked to see whether they are safe. In the United Kingdom, the law requires is that the appliances are safe (as far as is reasonably practicable). Guidance from the Institution of Electrical Engineers (IEE) and the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) suggest initial intervals for combined inspection and testing that range from three months (for construction equipment) to five years for inspection and never for testing (certain types of appliance in schools, hotels, offices and shops).
However the original United Kingdom term PAT (Portable Appliance Testing), is somewhat misleading as test and tagging can involve inspection and testing of fixed appliances, such as wall mounted air-conditioners that are not "hard wired" etc. Possibly a more accurate term for the whole process is In-service Inspection & Testing of Electrical Equipment.