What is “PAT” – What does “PAT” stand for?

A selection of portable electrical appliances

‘PAT’ is an acronym abbreviation shorthand or slang term that stands for ‘Portable Appliance Testing

PAT is a process of inspecting and testing portable electrical appliances; a portable appliance is any electrical appliance that is powered from a plug and socket outlet. 

The PAT process involves visually inspecting an appliance, and carrying out a sequence of PAT tests using a test machine. You can find more information about this on our PAT testing information page

This makes the word portable misleading, as it has nothing to do with whether you can move the appliance. In fact a portable appliance can be fixed to the wall (providing it has a plug – not those directly wired into the mains), stationery equipment such as fridges and washing machines, IT equipment like computers and printers, movable equipment like televisions and microwave ovens, portable equipment such as toasters and kettles, detachable leads, extension cables and hand-held appliances.