The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) have changed the legislation for Gas Safety Checks. Landlord gas checks (CP12’s) will now be allowed to be done 2 months ahead of time whilst retaining the existing renewal date, like the rules of a car MOT.
The new Gas Safety (Installation and Use) (Amendment) Regulations 2018 are due to come into force on 6 April 2018, amending those in force since 1998. This is a benefit to landlords as sometimes it can be difficult to access a property do a gas safety check. We’re sure that landlords will welcome this change.
The HSE aren’t relaxing the rules or safety standards but just allowing more flexibility. If things go wrong and the landlord hasn’t complied with gas safety standards; then they are open to heavy fines or even imprisonment. These new guidelines will allow the landlord to start the process early and have a new CP12 in place before the old one runs out. This will not affect the renewal date either.
Landlords can’t force access to the property without the tenant’s permission. So, this legislation change will allow more time to get access without falling foul of the law. There are also situations where the engineer turns up and is unable to gain access, this will incur costs which typically the landlord has to pay.
These new rules will allow the landlord to get the safety check done in plenty of time without shortening the annual gas check renewal time.
The Health & Safety Executive says:
Main changes to the legislation
The changes to GSIUR, which do not relax regulatory requirements or reduce safety standards, are to:
- introduce of a degree of flexibility to the timing of landlords’ annual gas safety checks. This MOT-style change means that landlords can carry out the annual gas safety check in the two months before the due date and retain the existing expiry date. This avoids landlords waiting until the last minute and not gaining access or having to shorten the annual cycle check to comply with the law. There is no change to the legal requirement for an annual gas safety check or for maintenance to be carried out
- incorporate an existing exemption into law to carry out alternative checks in situations where there is no meter to directly measure the heat input and it is not possible to measure the operating pressure, and extend the scope slightly to include situations where the meter is not accessible, or the meter display is not working
- disapply most of the requirements of GSIUR for installations fed by a dedicated gas supply, which are primarily used to supply compressed natural gas (CNG) to vehicles and which incorporate at least one gas compressor with an electric motor input power rating exceeding 5 kilowatts, bringing them in line with other industrial premises. Other more appropriate regulations already apply to these premises
Gas Safe Register Tips on Gas Safety in Rental Property:
- Have all gas appliances in your rental property safety must be checked annually by a Gas Safe registered engineer. As part of any safety check ensure that the engineer carries out a tightness test of the pipework to ensure there are no gas leaks, and a visual inspection of accessible gas pipework should also be completed to ensure the installation is in good condition.
- Find or check a Gas Safe registered engineer in your area using our online search or call on 0800 408 5500.
- Make sure you ask to see your engineer’s Gas Safe Register ID card both front and back. The front will confirm their registration and identity, the back will confirm they can do the gas work you’ve employed them to do.
- Stay aware of the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning– headaches, dizziness, nausea, breathlessness, collapse and loss of consciousness and make sure you comply with the law by providing a carbon monoxide monitor in any room with a solid fuel appliance, and ideally any room with a gas burning appliance.
- Look out for warning signs that a gas appliance isn’t working properly– lazy yellow flames, excessive condensation and black marks/stains. However, gas appliances can be unsafe without displaying these symptoms.
- Buy audible carbon monoxide alarms and install (in accordance with manufacturer’s guidelines) near to gas appliances, and it is a legal requirement in rental property to have these near solid fuel burning appliances. Alarms are a strong second line of defence against carbon monoxide poisoning.
- Use gas appliances for their intended purposes only, e.g. cookers should not be used to heat a room.
- Provide enough ventilation for gas appliances to burn correctly and make sure no air vents or chimneys are blocked.
- If you know of anyone doing gas work outside of Gas Safe registration, they are breaking the law. You can report them to us online or contact us on the consumer helpline above.
- Make sure you always have in place and supply your tenants with a copy of a current annual gas safety check certificate, at the start and during every tenancy – find out more about renting a property.
Disclaimer – Any error or omission on this blog post shall be subject to correction or deletion (as appropriate) without any liability on our part. We are not legal experts and are just sharing information of the legal checks that a landlord needs to make.