The Gas Safety Regulations outline the duties of landlords to ensure the safety of gas fittings and appliances in any rental properties they own. Are you a landlord or tenant trying to understand how you can be compliant with Gas Safety Regulations in the UK?
As a landlord, leaving gas appliances unchecked may mean you are breaking the law and risk leaving your tenants in unsafe accommodation. For tenants, carbon monoxide poisoning, leaks and fires can occur from any unsafe gas appliance within your property, including your boiler, so it’s important to understand your landlord’s responsibilities.
In this blog, we will cover the Gas Safety Regulations and what they mean for landlords and tenants. We’ll explain the importance of obtaining a CP12 certificate, as well as the risks that can occur by not having an annual safety check.
Gas Safety Regulations for Landlords
If you’re a landlord looking for guidance on the UK Gas Safety Regulations then there are a few important tasks you need to complete in your property. From getting an annual gas safety check by a Gas Safe registered engineer to obtaining a CP12 certificate, all landlords in the UK have an obligation to ensure their properties are safe for tenants.
Getting Annual Gas Safety Checks
As a landlord, it’s very important that you get an annual gas safety check on all gas appliances at your property to ensure there are no faults or leaks. For landlords, an annual Gas Safety Record is a legal requirement. When this inspection has been completed, you will receive your gas safety record (also known as a gas safety certificate) and this should be updated every 12 months. An annual gas check usually takes around 30 minutes and you should ensure they inspect your entire gas system, whilst also completing a tightness check to confirm there are no leaks.
Obtaining a CP12 Certificate is Important
What is a CP12 certificate? A CP12 or gas safety certificate is a legal requirement for UK landlords that proves all gas appliances have been deemed fit for purpose. A CP12 will be given to you by a Gas Safe registered engineer after they have inspected and carried out any necessary gas works at your property. It’s important to obtain a gas safe certificate so you know that the appliances in the property are safe to use.
By law, you should supply your tenant with a copy of the gas safety record before they move in or within 28 days of the check. These should be updated annually, firstly to ensure all appliances are still fault free and secondly, to comply with the Gas Safety Regulations.
Keep Up with Maintenance on Gas Appliances
It’s important that landlords comply with the Gas Safety Regulations and make sure that all gas pipework, appliances, chimneys and flues are kept in a safe condition. Citizens Advice notes that private landlords are responsible for the upkeep and maintenance of gas appliances within the property. By getting an annual gas safety check, you ensure that tenants can safely use the gas appliances within your property.
Penalties for Not Following the Gas Safety Regulations
As a landlord, it’s your duty to follow the Gas Safety Regulations — failure to comply is a serious criminal offence. If you are unable to provide your tenant with a CP12 certificate, you could be liable to unlimited fees and/or six months of imprisonment. Therefore it’s very important that you follow the above regulations, have an annual inspection and obtain a gas safety certificate.
Gas Safety Regulations for Tenants
As a tenant, it’s your responsibility to check that the appliances are safe to use within your home and report any issues to your landlord. You must also provide access for repairs and gas works to be completed. Additionally, you should liaise with your landlord to ensure an annual gas inspection can be carried out in order to receive the CP12 certificate. We also recommend taking the following steps.
Arrange a Gas Safe Registered Engineer
As a new tenant renting a property, it’s your responsibility to check any gas appliances you bring into the property whilst also double checking the ones already there — you should never assume that gas appliances are safe. We highly recommend that you obtain the CP12 certificate from your landlord and also arrange a Gas Safe registered engineer to do a safety check on all appliances before you move in. Any unsafe gas appliances can lead to leaks, fires and carbon monoxide poisoning, so it’s always best to double check your property’s appliances before using them.
Checking for Gas Appliance Warnings
When checking your gas appliances, you should look for any leaks, cracks and black marks. These are telltale signs of an issue and indicate that you need to call a Gas Safe registered engineer. When using gas appliances, you should only use them for their intended purposes, otherwise you run the risk of causing damage which could lead to a gas leak. If the situation occurs where you smell gas within the property, you must complete the following steps; open all doors and windows, leave the property and immediately call National Emergency Gas on 0800 111 999.
Protect Your Home from Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Unsafe appliances can lead to leaks of a clear, odourless gas called carbon monoxide (CO) which, when breathed in, can be lethal. It’s recommended that you get a CO alarm fitted in your home to alert your family to any carbon monoxide leaks. It’s also important to know the signs of carbon monoxide poisoning when keeping your home and family safe. There are a few main symptoms that you should be aware of; headaches, dizziness, nausea, breathlessness, collapse and loss of consciousness. If yourself or a member of your family are exposed to carbon monoxide or develop any of the above symptoms, you should immediately call your GP.