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  • Gas Safety Regulations for Landlords – Gas Checks that Every Landlord Must Know

  • Gas Safety Regulations for Landlords

    Natural gas is something every landlord or homeowner needs to look out for. As good a fuel as we consider it to be, unsafe use of natural gas can turn out to be disastrous for your home and everyone in it. Therefore, by law, the onus to maintain safety and check falls upon landlords. As a landlord, it’s your responsibility to ensure that the property you’re renting out to your tenants is safe for them to live in.

    However, unluckily, some landlords either remain unaware of these responsibilities or undermine them, which certainly isn’t the right thing to do. As any safety hazard, especially regarding gas safety hazards, can end up with you on the wrong side of the law. And trust us when we say no one wants that to happen.

    Under the Gas Safety Regulations 1988, landlords have certain duties that ensure their property is safe to reside in. Therefore, in this article, we’ll be discussing the gas safety regulations that every homeowner should know.

     The Essentials

    Firstly, as a landlord, the first thing that you need to do before renting your property out is to make sure that all equipment, pipework, and appliances in your house are inspected by a registered Gas Safe Engineer. The engineer will inspect them for leaks or other safety hazards and inform you on whether or not they’re safe for use.

    After the inspection is completed, he/she will provide you with a Gas Safety Certificate, also known as a CP12 certificate which you are required to give to your tenants before they move in or within 28 days of the inspection taking place.

    Note that these regulations are liable for any landlord rents out or provide their property for use to other people or tenants, even temporarily—for example, hostels, cottages, flats, bed and breakfast, and Airbnb. If you offer a temporary residence with a rental period of around 28 days, display the CP12 certificate in such a manner that the tenant can view it clearly.

    How Often Should a Gas Safety Inspection Be Carried Out?

    You can’t just get a gas safety check done and forget about it. Remember that by law, an inspection should be carried out by a registered gas safety engineer every 12 months. It’s important to store the CP12 certificates of each check for up to 2 years.

    What Does a Gas Safety Inspection Include?

    During a Gas Safety Inspection, an engineer will:

    • Inspect every gas appliance in your home
    • Check and measure the gas rate and burner pressure
    • Conduct a tightness test at the gas meter to ensure there aren’t any leaks
    • Check the ventilation and air supply
    • Test the appliance flue gases
    • Ensure safety appliances are functional
    • Check the boiler’s pressure valve

    Why Is a Gas Safety Inspection Important?

    Blocked pipework, flues, and gas leaks from appliances such as boilers can lead to the build-up of carbon monoxide in your property. Carbon monoxide is an odorless, poisonous gas that can prove to be fatal.

    A poisoning of carbon monoxide doesn’t always lead to obvious symptoms. The symptoms usually resemble that of dyspepsia and, therefore, go unnoticed. Symptoms include:

    • Headache
    • Dizziness
    • Vomiting
    • Stomach pain
    • Shortness of breath

    Gas safety inspections are important as an engineer can detect a faulty appliance or equipment before it starts to leak carbon monoxide, preventing a safety hazard.

    How Long Does a Gas Safety Inspection Take?

    A gas safety Inspection should usually take 30-40 minutes. However, it largely depends on the size of the property, the number of appliances in the property, or how many (if any) appliances are damaged and need repair.

    How Much Does a Gas Safety Inspection Cost?

    Gas safety check cost usually depends on the Gas Safe registered business that you choose to carry out these inspections. It’s recommended to check with at least three companies and compare their costs before finalizing one company. This way, you’ll get an idea about the cost and can choose whichever company you find cost-effective.

    All in all, the usual cost for gas safety inspections ranges from £30 and £150.

    What Will Happen If You Don’t Get an Inspection Done?

    As mentioned above, failing to comply with gas safety regulations can put you on the wrong side of the law as it is considered a serious offense. If you fail to provide a gas safety check record or certificate when needed, you can be liable for an unlimited amount of fine or/with six months in jail.

    Gas Safety Checks and Covid-19

    Thankfully, the authorities have relaxed some regulations keeping in mind the tenants who are displaying symptoms or have tested positive for the coronavirus. If your tenant is known to be displaying Covid-19 symptoms, a gas safety check can be postponed for a total of 10 to 14 days.

    This also comes into effect if a tenant has been told by NHS Test and Trace that they’ve been in close contact with someone who has tested positive. However, keep in mind that the exceptions are only limited to these circumstances.

    Nevertheless, if you have to delay an inspection, document the reason as to why you had to postpone it along with any communications you had with your tenant regarding the matter.

    Extra Precautions to Follow

    • Ensure you, your family, and your tenants know what to do in case of a gas safety hazard.
    • Make sure only a registered engineer is carrying out the inspection. Otherwise, the record will be invalid.
    • Make sure you have a carbon monoxide detector installed at your properties, and it is functional at all times to prevent a safety disaster.

    Gas safety is just one of the many things that a landlord has to worry about. However, with a regular inspection and safety check record storage, you can keep your property and everyone in it safe. We hope you find our article on gas safety regulations helpful.