Gas pipes - What are the rules

Discussion in 'Engineers' Talk' started by Bridgewarden, Dec 8, 2003.

  1. Mike Jackson

    Mike Jackson New Member

    As far as I was aware I thought the law referred to work on Gas fittings whether they are connected or not. My interpretation of the law is that a pipe being installed specifically to carry gas is classed as a fitting. It's all a wee bit of a grey area but personally I will not put my name to any new work unlesss I (or a trainee under my complete supervision) have carried out the work.

    When it comes to existing work the disclaimer on the gas safety certificate is very apt

    "This inspection is for gas safety purposes only in accordance with the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations. Flues and pipework were inspected visually and checked for soundness and satisfactory operation. A detailed internal inspection has not been carried out."

    If a fault with an installation comes to light later you can only have been expected to carry out a tightness test and visual inspection of existing pipework. I can just imagine the customers response if you insisted on ripping up the floors before connecting a new cooker.

    Mike
     
  2. Tangoman

    Tangoman Well-Known Member

    Have checked the Wickes site and it is true - they basically tell you how to do everything short of rigging up the gas pipe and commissioning the boiler which they quite correctly instruct you to leave to a pro.
    Since Wickes would be in VERY serious trouble if this was in fact illegal, and you can be sure that they have checked out their stuff, it brings the question I posed above down to what individuals are happy to put their name to, rather than any sort of legality.

    I fully agree though with the point about gas pipes. Having investigated this - it ain't illegal to put in piping that is to carry gas. Just illegal to put the gas in the pipe so to speak :) But since you'd be hard pressed to find someone willing to commission piping you had installed, it's got to make sense to leave all the pipework to a corgi chap.
     
  3. chris@vietec.com

    chris@vietec.com New Member

    You should not even hang the boiler, even the flue is covered under HSE regulations and if not correctly fitted can have fatal consequences

    Hopefully the law will be changed so that you cannot purchase a boiler or any gas appliance unless you are Corgi registered, which will help stop all you DIY'ers installing dangerous gas installations.
    You seem to forget that one day you may sell your property and if the new owner dies from Carbon Monoxide poisoning from a boiler that you installed DIY when you owned the property, it will be you that will face prosecution
     
  4. Pugley

    Pugley Member

    No, No, No absolutely no F***g way should the law be changed to prevent the general public from getting the best prices for Gas boilers, ovens , hobs etc, etc.

    The fitting of these items is covered in UK Law by HSE regulations, that is ALL that is required. The CORGI person must ensure it is safe when commissioned , that also goes for existing pipework, flues, positioning etc. There is no HSE regulation about who fits the boiler ONLY who connects gas and commissions it.

    If you take the licenced supply of items to it's logical conclusion, only Gas fitters could supply gas fittings, only electricians could supply electrical fittings and only plumbers could supply plumbing fitting(no law on plumbing yet).

    I think we all know what would happen to prices if supply was restricted only to licenced fitters for all of these essential products - sky high.

    No, No, No - what I mean is NO. I may be qualified to work with gas but I am also a member of the public who defends the right to a free market for all products.
     
  5. jmcbuilders

    jmcbuilders New Member

    I agree but the public need to be educated in what they can fit and what they cant and they do mess with gas. More advertising type campaigns to educate joe public and diyers. Next year when the new regs come in for boilers diyers and the public wont know a thing about it. JMc
     
  6. Tangoman

    Tangoman Well-Known Member

    I would be happy to see a law which restricted purchase of gas appliances and fittings to registered plumbers as long as it was accompanied by a government price fixing policy.

    As far as fitting the flue goes - Read the Wickes site. If there was any doubt at all that this was illegal they would be in serious trouble for instructing their customers to do this and you can be sure that their lawyers will have looked into this thoroughly.
     
  7. Mick90

    Mick90 New Member

    Agree with Pugley and jmcbuilders. The law needs to be made crystal clear to the public in these DIY sheds that are happy to sell gas fittings and appliances to anybody with the money. Surely without a CORGI installer adding their details to an appliance guarantee then it is void anyway? This should ensure the appliance installation is tested and commisioned correctly and has been certified safe to use.
    This only covers new installations. How many appliances are there out there in private properties that have not been serviced in years? Area where i live a whole estate was built in the 60's all had open flue boilers in the middle of the house. Majority have now had double glazing fitted, people block off draughts, this must be a disaster waiting to happen... Personally i think it should be mandatory for ALL gas appliances to be serviced anually not just those in rented accomodation.
     
  8. Tangoman

    Tangoman Well-Known Member

    Agreed Mick, but again only if covered by a reasonable fixed price and by people who only do this job. Otherwise there is too much scope for exploitation.
     
  9. chris@vietec.com

    chris@vietec.com New Member

    I disagree, the general public should not be allowed to purchase boilers, the flue on a boiler is very critical, the number of times that I have been called to a job because of a smell from the boiler only to discover that the flue has been fitted incorrectly and products of combustion are spilling into the room.

    Stop penny pinching, yes do your own tiling, install your own bathroom suite, fit your own radiators, but leave gas installations including boilers and gas fires to qualified personnel
     
  10. Mick90

    Mick90 New Member

    Agreed the flue is critical, but surely the fitter should have got it right on installation. If he was CORGI then should be strung up, and if he wasnt then still should be strung up. I dont disagree with the point but if the appliance is connected and commisioned by a CORGI engineer then this should all have been checked before any gas was allowed near the appliance?
    Secondly you are required to have an MOT test on your wheels every year at a government approved garage. Do the same with gas. Could CORGI offer a fixed price servicing scheme through their registered engineers? I know British Gas offer a star scheme for central heating care, not that you get your moneys worth judging by when they did my parents system. Quick look inside boiler, thats ok, then cleared off...
     
  11. combustion

    combustion New Member

    I totally agree. Boilers and other gas related fittings should not be available to anyone without the production of a valid Corgi ID card. Obviously items like copper tube an fittings would still be available and therefore still allow people to install gas pipework but if they couldn't buy the appliances then they would have no need to install pipework.
     
  12. chris@vietec.com

    chris@vietec.com New Member

    Mick90, the boilers I was called to were fitted DIY and not by gas engineers

    DIY people do not realize the dangers involved and think that they can bodge the flue when the have cut it to short, or lost connecting pieces
     
  13. Tangoman

    Tangoman Well-Known Member

    Now you're being f***g patronising.
    "DIY people do not realize the dangers involved"

    Yes - some people doing it DIY will bodge the job, but so will some plumbers including CORGI reg if they think they can get away with it. Doesn't mean that all DIY'ers are incompetent bodgers.
    Common sense must prevail - Wickes boilers for example come with complete flue fitting instructions aimed at DIY. The onus is on yourself to ensure that you can and do follow instructions to the letter. These instructions include by the way getting in a reg plumber to check the fitting, connect up to the gas supply and commission it.

    After all the sort of DIY'er who would bodge a flue job is the sort of DIY'er who would use a nail as a substitute fuse, and there ain't no law against changing your own fuses is there.

    Is anyone able to and going to come up with a geniune argument against this?
     
  14. chris@vietec.com

    chris@vietec.com New Member

    The argument is, if a registration scheme is set up, as it has been for gas, (Corgi), and the registered installers have to pay fees every year and pay for ACS gas courses every five years to prove their competency, the whole thing becomes a farce when some un-trained, unregistered pillock can go to Wickes buy a boiler and fit it.

    I refuse to connect the gas and commission installations fitted by DIY or unregistered installers and I am not alone, registered installers should stick together then we could force the issue
     
  15. Mike Jackson

    Mike Jackson New Member

    Production of a CORGI Card to buy gas related items sounds okay in principal but I can see a lot of prctical problems.

    I am a trained heating engineer and my time is more profitable if I send a labourer to pick up equipment for me rather than break off the job myself. This may not be a problem where we have accounts but what if I need a few fittings to finish a job and there is a B&Q round the corner or a merchants 10 miles away.

    Working on Gas is not th only safety critical activity that DIYers do. How many people carry out there own servicing? I would be very ticked off to go and buy a set of brake pads for my land rover to be told that I couldn't have a set because I didn't have a registered mechanic card.

    Ecucation and publicity are the key. The general public need to be reminded that only registered installers should carry out gas work for profit and that anyone carrying out gas work must be competent.

    Mike
     
  16. Tangoman

    Tangoman Well-Known Member

    Real Plumber - I agree totally with you in principle. This situation is no different to many other professions - if amateurs do everything then it removes the demand for pros and hence your income reduces.

    Problem of course at the moment for JO P is that getting a CORGI plumber in to do anything is damned hard! In about 2 years time though, there'll be millions of them (according to the news!).
     
  17. chris@vietec.com

    chris@vietec.com New Member

    Tangoman

    You have raised another issue here, this so called shortage of plumbers, I do not see it, there are not mass advertising campaigns for plumbers and the money has not rocketed to try and tempt plumbers to move from one company to another

    All these people who are re-training to be plumbers as stated in the media are in for an awful shock when they find out how little money you make as a plumber, its nowhere near the figures the news has been saying
     
  18. Tangoman

    Tangoman Well-Known Member

    Hi Real Plumber -
    yes - a lot of people are going to be in for a shock - it's sheer band wagon mentality. I'm sure there are plumbers out there earning a lot of money, but lots of experience and hard work makes that possible the same as in any job.
    However, I don't know what it's like in your area, but where I am I contacted 12 corgi reg plumbers in january for a quote for fitting my central heating, as I didn't fancy doing it myself. I made two attempts to contact each, 5 people got back to me (one a month later!), of these only 1 turned up to give me a quote, the other three said they were too busy for the next 3 months! The one who turned up spent an hour here, promised a quote, but it never materialised. So I definitely think there is a local shortage here in Surrey.
     
  19. The Bigfella

    The Bigfella New Member

    The gas piping installed in my house has compression joints, also runs across a step...and was installed by British Gas. They have leaked and I have repaired and replaced and rerouted.
    As a Qualified H.P. welder in Gas and Electric welding, brazing, soldering, and Qualified Piping Design and Installation Engineer ...are you saying..I am not allowed to work on the gas pipework ? ? ?
    Registering as Gas Safe costs alot and can't guarantee the workmanship..
     
  20. metrokitchens

    metrokitchens Screwfix Select

    Wowzers, It must be Easter - this thread has risen from the dead.
     

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