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Educating Tenants on Gas Safety: A 2024 Must-Read

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Post written by Dur-e-Sabih

If you are a tenant, then it is most likely the responsibility of your landlord to safety check all of the gas appliances in your home. But have you ever checked the gas safety record yourself? Do you know what you should assess in a gas safety certificate? Or are you aware of what actions to take in case of a gas leak? In this article, we will guide you on all things about gas safety, which is why it is a must-read for you.

Why Is Gas Safety Important?

Poorly fitted gas pipes or appliances can cause gas leaks, explosions, fires, or even Carbon Monoxide poisoning. One of the potentially harmful things about Carbon Monoxide is that you cannot smell or taste it. But, it has the potential to take any human life without even giving a warning.

One of the leading reasons for gas leaks is improper installation of gas appliances. Alternatively, it may also happen if these machines are not regularly maintained or are located in a poorly ventilated area. Landlords are legally responsible for ensuring annual gas safety checks. You can also learn more about gas safety certificates online.

Top Tips From Gas Safe Register

The Gas Safe Register is an official organization that is responsible for maintaining the record of every licensed professional involved in gas works. Here are the top tips that they have suggested for both landlords and tenants. 

  • When employing a gas safety engineer, ensure that they are gas-safe registered. You can also check their registration ID or visit the Gas Safe Register’s website. There is also an official number to contact in such cases of verification.
  • The landlord is responsible for getting all the safety checks done once a year. All gas appliances, such as boilers, cookers, and gas fires, must be included in these checks.
  • You must be aware of the warning signs in case your gas appliances are malfunctioning. Most of the gas appliances that work in perfect condition give off a perfect, crisp blue flame. A lazy yellow flame usually means that there is something wrong with your appliance.  
  • Carbon monoxide poisoning is lethal, and knowing the initial signs of carbon monoxide poisoning is essential. These symptoms include dizziness, nausea, headaches, breathlessness, loss of consciousness, and collapse. Rush to the hospital immediately in case you notice these symptoms.

What Can You Do as a Tenant?

Landlords often require additional support or advice and may want to look at the various options that are available in the market. You can provide support to your landlord by guiding them with possible suitable options. Moreover, you can also be available during the safety check so that all the inspections are done correctly.

By law, you can also remind your landlord about the legal procedures for gas safety. The gas safe register also has a free reminder service. You can enter the date and the name of your appliance. An email is then received every time your appliance is due for safety checks or maintenance.

How to Turn Off the Gas Supply in an Emergency

If you notice or suspect any gas leakage, you must know how to turn off your gas supply at the meter. The landlord is responsible for educating the tenant about how to turn off the gas supply.

  • The gas safety shut-off valve is usually located near the meter box. If it isn’t, it can also be under the stairs, a kitchen sink, or in the garage.
  • Once you have located the emergency shut-off valve, you must ensure all the gas appliances and their pilot switches are off. Never attempt to shut off the gas supply until all the appliances are off.
  • Go to your meter and find the gas safety shut-off valve. Turn it to the ‘off’ position. If you are unsure of the on and off direction, then here is a quick tip for you. If the lever is at a right angle to the pipe, it is off. When the lever is straight in the direction of the pipe, then it is on. Sometimes, you cannot shut the meter off; in such cases, contact the nearest emergency services and vacate the house.

Conclusion

Educating the tenants about gas safety is the landlord’s responsibility. An annual safety check of the premises and maintenance of the gas safety certificates must also be done by the landlord. As a tenant, you must only provide support or guidance to the landlord. Other than that, you must also be aware of any signs of gas leaks or carbon monoxide poisoning. Keep an eye on the gas appliances, too. If you notice anything out of the ordinary, then it is always better to get it checked by a registered gas safety engineer. 

FAQ’s

What Are My Landlord’s Duties When It Comes to Gas Safety?

Your landlord is responsible for arranging maintenance by a certified gas safety engineer. It is also in accordance with the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulation 1998. The maintenance work must include all the pipe work, appliances, and flues that are present in the house.

The landlord is also responsible for employing someone to carry out the gas safety check on an annual basis. They must keep a record of the gas safety check for up to two years. Moreover, they must also issue a copy of the certificate to the existing or new tenants within 28 days of inspection.

Does the Landlord Have the Right to Access a Property for Any Type of Safety Checks?

Usually, the contract states the rights of the landlord. However, in most cases, the landlord can access the property for any maintenance or safety check. But, they may never use force to enter any property. According to regulation 39 of the Gas Safety 1998, a landlord must show that they comply with the law and have taken all the necessary actions for it. The landlord must leave a notice to the tenant that he made an attempt to complete the gas safety check.  

If my landlord is using an agent, then who is responsible for the gas safety duties?

If your landlord is using an agent, then their contract will clearly specify who is responsible for the maintenance and gas safety checks. Their contract must also mention who is responsible for keeping records of these gas safety checks. If any point of the contract specifies that the duties of the gas safety checks are the responsibility of the agent, then that is how it will happen.

What Do You Do if Your Landlord Does Not Provide You With the Record of the Gas Safety Check?

You must remind your landlord about their legal duties of carrying out the gas safety checks and maintaining the record. Additionally, you can also tell them about the issuance of a copy within 28 days of the check being completed. In case they still refuse to provide a copy, you can make an official complaint to HSE by writing to them.

Is It Okay to Keep an Electronic Copy of the Gas Safety Certificate?

An e-copy of the gas safety certificate is also acceptable as long as your landlord can reproduce it in the form of a hard copy whenever required. The digital copy must be secured and clearly readable.

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