A gas safety certificate is a type of record all residential rental properties are legally required to keep. In the United Kingdom, the landlord is required to procure a thorough gas check from a qualified professional at least once every year. This helps ensure the safety of the occupants and also helps curb disasters.
An increase in the use of gas appliances at home has augmented the threat of gas leaks. If left unchecked, this could cause an explosion or a fire hazard. Hence posing certain danger to anyone living in and around areas where there’s gas supply.
Here’s more on the importance of gas safety certificates in the UK. Learn more about gas safety certificates at https://www.landlord-certificates.co.uk/gas-certificates/
Importance of a Gas Safety Certificate
Poor installations, damaged appliances, and broken or worn out gas pipes are the main culprits behind gas leaks. The fact that property owners are required by law to have a valid gas safety certificate means that any gas risks reduce significantly.
Why? Because it is during a gas check or inspection when,
- Risks such as explosions, carbon monoxide poisoning, and flue emissions can be curbed
- Repairs can be done on faulty appliances or gas pipes
- Care and maintenance is performed on the entire gas system
- Safety checks are made to ascertain that all the pipe works and fittings are in excellent working conditions
- The ventilation system is inspected to check whether or not they are intact
- Gas appliances are approved to be burning in the right temperatures or pressure
- Safety devices like smoke alarms and carbon monoxide gas detectors are tested and seen to be in complete working conditions
Note that not anyone can conduct a gas check. The UK laws only recognize gas safe registered plumbers and engineers as the only qualified professionals to conduct a gas check.
Whenever you purchase gas appliances, you must do so from a reputable supplier. This because they go to great lengths to ensure that the appliances are installed properly. Poorly installed gas appliances may develop issues that could lower their efficiency throughout their stipulated lifespan. Not forgetting the lurking dangers it could cause if the already faulty appliance goes for too long without maintenance.
Manufacturers also offer their own registered plumbers and engineers to carry out repairs. A move that has not only helped them reduce the number of claims on warranties but also increase the safety levels in all residential areas.
Provided the landlord conducts yearly gas checks, there will be fewer breakdowns of both old and new appliances. For this reason, you will have no problem acquiring a gas safety certificate.
Other Reasons why you need a Gas Safety Certificate
In addition to those listed above, there are other reasons why you should voluntarily work towards having a gas safety certificate. They include,
- It Saves you Money
For you to get the gas safety certificate, you end up learning which appliances need replacing or repair. This saves you the money you would have spent if the faulty appliance caused an explosion accident. What’s more, faulty appliances tend to consume more gas than is necessary. This means that without the gas safety inspection, you will be spending more on gas bills.
- You Enjoy Peace of Mind
You sleep better when you know that there’s minimal risk of a gas leak, gas poisoning, or an explosion occurring. It’s also peaceful to know that the relevant authorities won’t come knocking on your door due to your failure to abide by the law.
- Prevents Accidents and Disasters
A gas leak or the buildup of carbon monoxide can lead to serious explosions. This could cause damage to property or even death. A thorough gas safety inspection helps prevent such accidents.
Why a Gas Safety Certificate Is a Legal Requirement
Owing to an increased number of gas leaks and explosions, the law sees it fit to enforce gas rules and regulations. The government realizes that a large number of explosions happen as a result of property owners opting to perform DIY projects on their own gas appliances combined with poor or the lack of proper maintenances on gas systems.
You can agree that the boilers present now are far more complex than what they were in the past. This makes DIY repairs, maintenance, or installations very risky especially for someone who barely has any experience.
If you are a landlord, it is your job to check and see whether the maintenance guy or gas inspection guy is indeed registered before allowing them to work. Feel free to ask for their registration number and enquire which approved gas safety body they are attached to.
As a rental property owner you are tasked with the responsibility of ensuring the security and safety of your tenants. This means procuring a gas safety inspection not only because it is required of you by the law but also for accountability.
That being said, you would be breaking the law if,
- You fail to facilitate an annual gas safety inspection by a registered engineer every year. This according to the 1998 Gas Safety Regulations
- You rent your property without being issued with a gas safety certificate also legally known as the CP12
- You forget to procure another gas safety check once the previous gas safety certificate has passed its expiry date
- You prefer to use an unqualified person to install or maintain your gas appliances. Whether it’s due to inadequate funds or you’re oblivious about the requirements of the law, any landlord will suffer persecution if they fail to use a registered gas plumber or engineer to conduct gas checks
- You refuse to honor the 1985 landlord Tenant Act section 11 which requires the landlord to conduct frequent repairs on the pipework and other installations in his or her property
Failure to adhere to the provisions of the 1998 Gas Safety Regulations could leave you incurring severe punishment or even arrest. In the UK, the Health and Safety Executive–HSE is the body tasked with enforcing the gas safety rules.
If found guilty of breaking the law as listed above, you may have to pay thousands of pounds in fines or worse, imprisonment for six months or more.
The crucial role gas safety checks play in residential properties cannot be stressed further. If all the aforementioned reasons are anything to go by, it is clear that an annual gas safety inspection can indeed save lives and prevent disasters from happening.
Play your part as a responsible landlord and help make the surroundings safer by getting your gas safety certificates.