Home safety for tenants

Gas Safety

By law we must visit your home once a year to check that your gas supply and appliances are safe.

Why do I need an annual gas service and safety check?

Every year in the UK about 50 people die from Carbon Monoxide poisoning due to faulty gas fires, central heating boilers, cookers and other gas appliances. As well as making your home safer, a check will make sure your appliances are working properly and efficiently. This will help save you money on fuel bills.

What does the check involve?

The safety check is free and takes about 40 minutes. Our contractor will check and service your boiler, gas pipes and flues (vents that take the fumes outside). They will also check the connection to your gas cooker, but not the cooker itself. It is your responsibility to make sure the cooker is safe, but our contractor will tell you if there is a problem.

How is my yearly check arranged?

When your next gas safety check is due, our contractor will write offering you a date and time for their visit. It is really important that you keep this appointment.

If the time is not convenient, please contact our contractor straight away and they will arrange a new date and time with you.

If you are not at home for the appointment, the contractor will leave a card letting you know they called.They will then send you another appointment date.

If you miss both your appointments we can take legal action to get into your home and you may have to pay legal costs of up to £1,000.

This is what will happen if you do not co-operate with the gas safety check:

If you do not contact Inquilab or our contractor, you will receive a letter from our solicitors. The cost of sending this letter will be charged to you.

If you still do not allow our contractor in, we will apply for a court order. After an injunction has been served we can legally enter your home to carry out the gas service whether you are in at the time or not. The court costs will be charged to you.

 

What happens after the check?

After the check, our contractor will give you a gas safety certificate, known as a CP12 or LGSR (Landlords Gas Safety Record). Inquilab will receive a copy.

If I no longer use gas in my home, do I still need a check?

Even if the gas meter in your home has been turned off, we still need to check the supply pipes to make sure there are no gas leaks.

Who is the gas contractor?

The gas contractor is K&T Heating Ltd and their engineers visit all residents who need a gas safety check. They also carry out repairs to gas heating systems.

What is Carbon Monoxide?

Carbon monoxide is a colourless, odourless, poisonous gas. It has no smell and you cannot see it, but it can kill without warning.

The early symptoms of Carbon Monoxide poisoning are like those of flu, but without the fever. They include headache, tiredness, shortness of breath, feeling sick and dizziness.

You can help keep yourself safe from Carbon Monoxide poisoning by:

  • not interfering with your boiler or gas cooker
  • using a Gas Safe registered contractor to install and service your gas cooker
  • not blocking air vents on an appliance, or any grilles, flues or air bricks in the room that houses the boiler
  • never using an appliance you think may not be working properly. Report your concerns to Inquilab
  • never burning charcoal in your home, garage, vehicle or tent, as the fumes contain carbon monoxide
  • never using portable camping cookers or calor gas heaters in your home
  • never leaving a car engine running in a garage attached to your home, even with the garage door open
  • never using the gas cooker to heat your home
  • never using an unvented gas appliance in a room with closed doors or windows or in any room where people are sleeping
  • installing Carbon Monoxide detectors/alarms and making sure they are not covered by furniture or curtains

If you think there may be a gas leak in your home turn off your gas supply straight away at the meter and call the national free-phone gas emergency number on: 0800 111 999

If you smell gas:

  • extinguish anything that makes a fire or flame (such as candles or your gas cooker)
  • open all your doors and windows
  • put out cigarettes
  • don’t use matches or naked flames
  • don’t turn any light switches or power switches on or off as they could make a spark

Asbestos

Asbestos was widely used in constructing buildings before 1999, but today it is illegal to use asbestos in any form. It is perfectly safe if left undisturbed.

We have to know which of our properties contain asbestos, so if your home was built before 1999, we may need to survey it to check whether asbestos is present.

If our contractor, Armstrong York, contacts you, please allow them in to survey your home. If they find asbestos, they will tell you about any risks and send a report to Inquilab. This will either advise us to remove the asbestos or to leave it alone, in which case we will check its condition every year.

If you are concerned that you may have asbestos in your home, please contact us for advice. We may arrange for a survey to be carried out.

Condensation

Modern homes are better insulated than older ones and this can be a cause of condensation.

Condensation is sometimes confused with damp, whch is very rare and usually caused by rain water entering through the roof or walls.

Condensation is the effect of moist air caused by day to day activities, such as running a bath, taking a shower, drying laundry and cooking. When the moist air meets a colder surface, such as windows, walls and tiles, it condenses and turns to water.

If left untreated this can turn black and form a mould.

The best way to beat condensation is to prevent moisture forming by:

  • covering saucepans with lids when cooking
  • keeping the bathroom door closed and using the extractor fan or opening a window slightly when having a bath or shower
  • not drying laundry on radiators (use a clothes airer by an open window instead)

If you find condensation forming on your windows or elsewhere, wipe the area dry as this will help prevent mould growing.

You should also pay attention to ventilation, temperature and insulation in your home:

  • use your extractor fan or the vents in your windows and don’t block up air bricks
  • maintain a steady temperature in your home
  • make sure your loft (if you have one) is insulated, that your hot water cylinder has a jacket and that you keep the curtains drawn during colder weather

For more information on condensation and to obtain a hygrometer to measure the amount of moisture in the air, call us on 0208 607 7777