Helpful Tips Property Management

Would you be able to spot the signs of CO leak?

Victoria Barker
Written by Victoria Barker

As Gas Safe launches a new campaign called #dontcutcorners, the RLA is supporting the campaign by ensuring that landlords understand their obligations when it comes to gas safety.

By law, landlords should ensure that if they have a gas appliance in a property that they rent out, they should also have a valid Gas Safety certificate. This is valid for twelve months. 

And while last week’s English Housing Survey report revealed that ‘there has been a statistically significant increase in the proportion of all private sector homes with a solid fuel appliance and a carbon monoxide alarm”, it is still crucial that landlords do not leave gas safety on the back burner.

According to Jonathon Samuel, Chief Executive at Gas Safe Register, the new campaign “highlights the Gas Safe Register as a trusted source to find a qualified and legal gas engineer to work on gas appliances, to make sure they’re working safely and efficiently”

The legal stuff-your responsibilities as a landlord

Gas Safe have issued the following list of things that landlords are responsible for. Landlords should ensure that annual safety checks on gas appliances are carried out by a Gas Safe engineer. By law, landlords must make sure that:

  • pipe-work, appliances and flues provided for tenants are maintained in a safe condition
  • that all appliances and flues that they provide for tenants use have an annual safety check
  • that maintenance and annual safety checks are carried out by an engineer registered with Gas Safe Register
  • all gas equipment (including any appliance left by a previous tenant) is safe or otherwise removed before re-letting
  • a gas safety record is provided to the tenant within 28 days of completing the check or to any new tenant before they move in
  • they keep a copy of the gas safety record for two years
Signs of a Carbon Monoxide gas leak in a property
  • If you or your tenants see flames that are a lazy yellow or orange colour on the gas hob, instead of the usual crisp blue
  • If there is dark staining on or around gas appliances
  • If pilot lights frequently blow out
  • If you or your tenants notice that there is increased condensation outside windows
Signs of a CO Poisoning

Unsafe gas work can potentially lead to carbon monoxide poisoning, which has symptoms that are similar to the flu, food poisoning, and fatigue.

Accord to Gas Safe, the main symptoms of CO poisoning are headaches, dizziness, nausea, breathlessness, collapse and a loss of consciousness. Symptoms only occur when in the home.

Open fire or log burning stove? You’ll need a Carbon Monxoxide alarm

In addition to the above, by law landlords should ensure that a carbon monoxide alarm is installed in any room that contains a solid fuel burning appliance, for example an open fire or a log burning stove.

More useful hints and tips
  • Whether you need to repair, service or install a gas appliance, you must use a registered Gas Safe engineer to do this. Before any gas work is carried out its always wise to ask for the engineers ID card, and encourage tenants to do the same.
  • Read about a recent change to the rules surrounding annual gas safety checks, giving landlords greater flexibility around dates here.
  • You can follow updates from the Don’t Cut Corners campaign by searching the hashtag #DontCutCorners
  • The RLA runs a half day Utilities Safety course in London and Manchester, which covers what landlords need to know around Gas Safety regulations. The course is £52 for RLA members and £62.40 for RLA non-members

About the author

Victoria Barker

Victoria Barker

Victoria is the Communications Officer for the RLA.

She is responsible for producing articles for our Campaigns and News Centre, the weekly E-News newsletter and media review, and creating social media content. She also contributes to our members magazine, Residential Property Investor.

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