Gas Safety Checks
Find out everything you need to know about Gas Safety checks from BPS Facilities Management.
Having your Gas Boiler and other Gas Appliances gas safety checked and certified is essential as a business or commercial property owner.
A commercial gas boiler safety check ensures your boiler is running safely and efficiently and you are legally bound to have one for every gas appliance located in your property every 12 months. Without one, you could be fined up to £6,000 or even face a prison sentence if anyone is injured or dies as a result of it.
Carbon monoxide is a killer and over 40 people die from carbon monoxide poisoning every year in the UK. It is undetectable visually, by taste and by smell and this makes it even more dangerous. Being exposed to carbon monoxide (CO) can cause long-term physical damage and approximately 200 people are admitted to hospital with severe CO poisoning symptoms every year. A gas safety check ensures your gas boiler is working as it should do, checks for CO emissions and ensures it is running efficiently. You should also have CO alarms fitted in your commercial property which will sound if any CO emissions over the safe limit are detected.
An annual gas safety check and boiler service can prevent and identify gas leaks before they happen which can be dangerous and cause serious upheaval within your business, as well as identifying any issues that could lead to your boiler not operating safely.
If you are an employer, a commercial property owner or a landlord you legally have to ensure any gas appliances in your property have annual gas safety checks and you have to prove they have been carried out by a qualified Gas Safe registered engineer with a Gas Safety Certificate.
Commercial Property Owner, Landlord and Business Owner Gas Safety Responsibilities
The Gas Safety (Installation & Use) Regulations 1998 state that the duties of employers and self-employed persons are:
35. It shall be the duty of every employer or self-employed person to ensure that any gas appliance, installation pipework or flue installed at any place of work under his control is maintained in a safe condition so as to prevent the risk of injury to any person.
What is included in a Gas Boiler or Gas Appliance Safety Check?
- The boiler and its pipework are installed and positioned in the property correctly
- A check to ensure the appliance is properly installed and the gas is burning safely
- All viewable gas pipework is checked to ensure it has been installed correctly and safely
- Gas pipes are connected properly and there are no leaks
- A check to ensure there is an adequate and consistent air supply for the gas to burn properly, cleanly and safely
- Analyses to check the gas is burning in the system as it should do
- Gas pressure test to ensure it is working safely and to the manufacturer’s appliance instructions
- A heat input test to ensure it is working safely and to the manufacturer’s instructions
- A flue or chimney check to ensure the size is correct for the appliance and there are no gas leak or fire risks
- A check of the appliance size versus the gas input/output to ensure it is suitable for the property size
- A check of all the safety devices within the gas system
- Cleaning of the necessary components inside the appliance to keep is operating safely and efficiently
The engineer carrying out the checks legally has to be Gas Safe Registered and this is a requirement for not only employers, commercial property owners and landlords but also for domestic property gas appliances. A report is provided at the end to show the checks that have been carried out, the results and if the boiler is safe to continue to operate. If it isn’t, a Gas Safe registered engineer is legally bound to condemn the gas system and shut it down. They can also state in their report that work or repairs are needed and specify if these need to be carried out within a certain time frame, otherwise the system will be condemned.
Who should I use for my gas appliance safety check?
A gas safety check should only ever be carried out by a Gas Safe Registered engineer. In the UK, all gas engineers must be on the Gas Safe Register to demonstrate they can work safely and legally on gas appliances.
What is a Gas Safe Registered engineer?
A Gas Safe registered engineer has the qualifications and experience to work on the gas appliance they have been checked to work on. Legally only Gas Safe registered engineers are allowed to work on gas heating systems, boilers, cookers, fires and any other gas appliances in the UK.
A Gas Safe registered engineer has to carry a Gas Safe ID. The ID card shows their name, the gas systems they are registered to work with, including if this is domestic and or commercial appliances, as well as the Gas Safe yellow triangle.
What is the difference between a boiler service and a gas safety check?
A safety check will identify if your boiler is operating safely whilst a boiler service ensures it is running efficiently. An annual check gas safety check normally combines the two, however, you should always check this with your boiler specialist.
As an employer, commercial property owner or landlord, legally you have to have a gas safety check and a gas safety certificate issued for each gas appliance and flue every 12 months.
All types of boilers, whether they are gas or oil or electric should be serviced and checked annually to make sure they are working safely and efficiently.
BPS Gas Safety Advice for Landlords or Commercial Property Owners
- As an employer, commercial property owner or landlord, you are legally required to have a Gas Installation Safety Check carried out under the Gas Safety (Installation & Use) Regulations 1998
- Every gas appliances must have a gas safety check every 12 months
- You are not responsible for any gas appliances owned by a tenant in your property
- Stay on top of safety and maintenance, plan in advance and don’t leave it too late to book your gas safety checks so you are out of your 12-month timeframe
- Use a trusted Gas Safe registered business/engineer like BPS Facilities for all services, installations and repairs
- Keep a record of any work or repairs that are carried out (reports and invoices)
- Test your CO alarms every month
- Replace your CO alarms every five years
Consider a service contract with BPS which will cover your annual Gas Safety checks and any other building maintenance needs you have.
At BPS we commit to working alongside you to identify your property maintenance needs and your contract terms will be around your business or property. We have employed Gas Safe registered engineers who have the qualifications and experience to work on any size commercial boiler or gas appliance, whether it is a smaller system or full plant room we can look after all of your installations, servicing and repair needs. We have a team of employed trades and this ensures your property needs are always looked after in an emergency or for any planned maintenance.
Landlord’s Responsibilities for Gas Safety
- You are legally responsible for the safety of your tenants in relation to gas safety. By law you must:
- Repair and maintain gas pipework, flues and appliances in a safe condition
- Ensure an annual gas safety check on each appliance and flue
- Keep a record of each safety check
- You should keep your tenants informed about their responsibilities whilst they are renting your property
- As a landlord, you have to provide your tenant with a copy of the Gas Safety Record (previously known as a certificate or a CP12) for the property at the start of their tenancy with you
- You must also provide them with a copy of any further checks within 28 days of the check.
Gas Safety Records
- Details of the landlord and the property address
- Appliance or appliances tested description
- The safety checks carried out for each appliance and the results
- Any safety issues which have been identified during the checks
- Any action or repairs needed to ensure safety
- Details of the Gas Safe engineer who carried out the checks, their signature and the date of the check
What happens if you don’t service your gas boiler or gas appliance?
- It may not be running safely and this can be extremely dangerous and result in gas leaks, carbon monoxide poisoning and fires
- It may be operating unsafely
- If you don’t service your every 12 months, this will in most cases invalidate its warranty meaning you won’t be covered for the cost of parts and the repair needed
The boiler won’t operate as efficiently and as a result, you will be paying more than you need to in energy costs
Carbon monoxide, also known as CO is a poisonous gas that is undetectable through sight, smell or taste and this makes it extremely dangerous. Exposure to CO can cause long-term physical damage and it can be fatal.
Carbon monoxide occurs when there isn’t enough oxygen for the gas to burn completely, resulting in carbon monoxide being created as a waste product. Gas boilers or gas appliances produce carbon monoxide naturally, however, it is carried out of the property via a flue. Carbon monoxide emissions into your property can also be a result of a leak in your appliance.
Warning signs of Carbon Monoxide
There are some signs that your gas appliance is producing too much carbon monoxide or you have an appliance or flue leak. They are, however, very difficult to detect and in most cases due to you not being able to see it, smell or taste it, it goes undetected until too late.
This is why an annual gas safety check for all gas appliances is essential, as well as you having carbon monoxide detectors fitted in your property.
Signs of Carbon Monoxide
- Condensation in rooms with gas appliances
- Soft yellow flames
- Sooty stains or discolouration around gas appliances
- Fumes or smoke in the house
- Slower than normal burning of solid fuel fires
Physical Symptoms of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
- Visual problems
- Dry throat
Action to take if you think you could have carbon monoxide within your property
- Switch all appliances off
- Switch off the gas supply at the mains
- Open doors and windows to ventilate the property
- Evacuate the property immediately
- Call the National Gas Emergency Service on 0800 111 999 to report the incident, or the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) Gas Safety Advice Line on 0800 300 363
- Call for immediate medical help even if you don’t feel you have been affected by the carbon monoxide as symptoms can worsen quickly. You need to be assessed and monitored by a medical professional
- Do not re-enter the property until you have been told by an expert you are able to
Carbon Monoxide Detectors
- Carbon monoxide alarms should be fitted in the same room as any fuel-burning appliances, either wall or ceiling mounted. Place the alarm at head height, which is breathing height if you can
- Fit them in any rooms which are occupied a lot
- Additional alarms should be located in any sleeping areas
- Keep your alarm at least one metre away from fires, boilers, cookers or heaters
- Don’t fit them in areas of or near high condensation and steam (eg kettles, cooker tops, showers).
- Ensure you test your carbon monoxide alarm regularly using the test button
- Replace the batteries when the low battery signal sounds
- Follow the instruction manual that came with your detector for fitting and replacing
- Remember, you can never have too many smoke and carbon monoxide alarms in your home or business
- Only buy CO alarms marked with the ‘EN50291’ standard. This can also be written as BSEN 50291 or EN50291 and with the ‘CE’ mark. These codes would be detailed on the product and packaging and it should also have a Kitemark or Loss Prevention Certification Board (LPCB) logo which shows independent testing and certification
- Always remember, a carbon monoxide (CO) alarm must never be used in place of annual gas safety checks
Always remember an annual safety check of your gas appliances is a legal requirement for any employer, commercial property owner and landlord.
BPS Facilities are Gas Safe registered and can arrange your Gas Safety checks for you annually as part of your facilities contract with us or we are able to carry them out as you request them. We will ensure your boiler system is in safe working order and operating efficiently saving you money on any potential increases to your energy costs.