If you are a landlord or you are an owner of any property, you are required by law to obtain a gas safety certificate at least once every year. This law is covered under Gas safety installation and use regulation 1998 and has jurisdiction over all UK based residents. All gas appliances and flues should be inspected by a registered engineer before the certificate is issued. When property is managed by an agent, the agency agreement contract should clearly state who is responsible for the inspection. If a landlord decides to give the agent that responsibility, then by law the agent is liable for failure to get a gas safety certificate.
You may be wondering who is a registered engineer
The law recognizes a registered engineer as an individual who has been registered and approved to legally work on boilers, fires, cooker, and any other gas appliance. To know if an engineer is registered, check the ID. Every registered engineer carries an ID that shows the kind of service he/she is authorized to offer. Also, there are numerous online platforms that can help you distinguish a registered engineer. Simply check the engineer’s details on such platforms.
Qualifications of a gas registered engineer
The engineer should prove that he/ she is qualified and has completed training to work on gas installation. A working history of all past gas installation jobs should be produced by the engineer. Also, to become a qualified engineer one should commence work on city guild training thus check for this as well. Having completed and passed in these two training, then one is approved by NVQ. An approval from NVQ gives an engineer the competence and the authority to work on gas installation thus it is only then that you can hire such an engineer to do the inspection.
Why do you need a gas safety certificate
As a landlord, you have a legal obligation to ensure the safety of all your tenants. As such, you must take all the necessary precautions to reduce all forms of danger in your rental property. With regards to gas installation regulation, a landlord has the following responsibilities;
the entire pipework, flues and gas appliance must be maintained to ensure they are in safe condition. Gas appliances particularly should be serviced according to the instructions of the manufacturer. The maintenance should be done by a Gas safe registered engineer.
–Gas safety checks
In addition to maintenance, a gas safety check must be conducted once every year on all gas appliances and flues. This inspection is done to make sure all gas fittings, appliances and flues are safe for use. The following appliances should be checked during the inspection;
-Gas meter -cooker
-Boiler -fire places
-Gas ovens -Gas hobs
After inspection, a record which is the gas safety certificate is issued. The landlord must give a copy to every tenant before he/she moves in. The landlord retains a gas safety certificate for a period of two years when another one will be issued. Failure to do any of these is deemed a criminal offense and the law states clearly the kind of penalties in such a case.
Home owners are not required by law to get the inspection done. However, that does not imply you should endanger your family. Ensuring inspection of all gas appliances should be done in homes to reduce the risk exposure as well as to get a peace of mind.
Objectives of a gas safety certificate check
When you get the appropriate engineer to undertake the inspection, what should you expect at the end of the exercise? Gas safety certificate is conducted to accomplish the following;
-All gas appliances listed above must be checked for tightness.
-In case test points are available, it is necessary to ensure standing and working pressure gets tested.
-The burner pressure must also be checked. This should be done in comparison with the manufacture’s outlined instructions and data plate.
-In the flue flow, combustion products should be removed thus the engineer should check to confirm this.
-Flame failure devices should be kept in a satisfactory operational condition ,thus during the inspection, a test should be done to confirm it.
Failure of gas certificate
After competing the inspection, the engineer will state whether your building has passed or failed the test. In case everything is in order, then that is deemed as a success while in some cases one or two things might fail the test. In such a case, the engineer issues a certificate that clearly describes the situation in your property. For instance:
-Immediate dangerous (ID) certificate implies that installation in the building is unsafe. If operated or is connected to gas supply, it possess danger to inhabitants thus it should be disconnected.
-If the gas safety certificate says “A RISK” it implies that some factors identified constitute danger thus it should be turned off and the fault repaired.
-If the engineer issues a certificate saying “NOT CURRENT” it implies that your installation is outdated and does not meet the latest and current requirements. It is safe but you should improve to ensure you meet the current requirements.