Gas Safety Obligations for Landlords.
Whether you're already a landlord, planning on renting out a property, or are a lettings agent or manager, there are several things to make sure you know about when it comes to gas safety. As 'Gas Safe' keep saying, "Don't Cut Corners".
The Health and Safety Executive website has a lot of information, which I'd highly recommend reading, but I've summarised for you, the most important items they cover.
What are a landlord's duties?
A landlord is responsible for their tenants safety. All gas appliances, fittings and flues provided for tenants must be safe. This includes anything in a communal area, but which may be used by tenants. Responsibility is for the maintenance and repair of flues, appliances and pipework provided, and must be done by a Gas Safe registered engineer.
There is no specific timeframe, although regular annual maintenance checks and subsequent repairs is good practice.
You are responsible for doing an annual gas safety check one year after installation of a new appliance or flue, and annually thereafter. You must keep a record of the safety check for 2 years and issue a copy to each tenant within 28 days of the check. You must issue a copy to new tenants before they move in.
What are a managing / letting agent's duties?
If you rent out a property via a managing agent, make sure the management contract clearly specifies who is responsible for maintenance and safety checks. The Health and Safety Executive advises that you request copies of maintenance information and safety checks from the management agency.
If the contract specifies that the agent has responsibility, then the same duties that apply to a landlord apply to the agent. In this situation an agent must arrange maintenance by a Gas Safe registered engineer for all pipework, appliances and flues.
What gas appliances does a landlord have responsibility for?
Any gas appliance that you own and provide for the tenant's use is included in your legal duties. If a tenant has their own gas appliance, then you have responsibilities for parts of the associated installation and pipework, but not for the actual appliance.
Can a room containing a gas appliance be used as a bedroom?
Since 31 October 1998, any room converted to use as a bedroom must not contain the following gas appliances:
A gas fire, gas space heater or a gas water heater (including a gas boiler) over 14 kilowatts gross input unless it is room sealed.
A gas fire, gas space heater, or a gas water heater (including a gas boiler) of 14 kilowatts gross input or less or any instantaneous water heater unless it is room sealed or has an atmosphere-sensing device.
If a room contains one or more of the above appliances and was used as a bedroom prior to 1998 then you will need to do a risk assessment to determine if it can still be used as a bedroom.
I've copied this directly from the Health and Safetly Executive website, as of Febuary 2019.
Are the regulations the same for LPG?
Yes, Landlord duties for LPG appliances are the same as for natural gas.
Ensure the correct size and type of gas bottle is being used, and be aware that outdoor heaters are not designed for indoor use.
Should a landlord provide a CO alarm?
It's advisable to provide a CO alarm, to give tenants advance warning of CO in the property. Importantly alarms should not be regarded as a replacement for regular maintenance and safety checks.
Private rented sector landlords are required to have at least one smoke alarm installed on every floor of their properties, and a CO alarm in any room where solid fuel is used. The landlord must make sure the alarms are in working order at the start of each new tenancy.
If you're unsure about anything Gas related in your rental property, the best thing is to consult a Gas Safe registered engineer. Please contact us if you need any advice or checks.