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General Gas Safety FAQs

General Gas Safety FAQs

Date: 10 August 2010

General Gas Safety FAQs

(Note: This does not apply to gas customers who have been advised to contact HSENI’s Emergency Helpline)

What should I do if I suspect an appliance is unsafe?

It is illegal for anyone to use a gas appliance if they suspect it is unsafe. Turn the appliance off and do not touch it until it has been checked by a Gas Safe Registered engineer.

If you suspect there is a gas leak you should immediately do the following:

  • Call the NI Gas Emergency number on 0800 002 001
  • Open all the doors and windows
  • Shut off the gas supply at the meter control valve (if you know where it is)

Why should I use a Gas Safe Registered engineer?

Anyone employed to work on gas appliances in domestic premises must be a Gas Safe Registered engineer and competent in that area of gas work. By using a Gas Safe Registered engineer you can be sure that any work completed by a Gas Safe Register technician will be done competently and safely.

HSENI advises that you should arrange for regular maintenance and an annual safety check to be carried out on your gas appliances and installation by a Gas Safe Registered engineer. Landlords have a legal duty to ensure that this is carried out.

How do I know if an engineer is Gas Safe Registered?

All Gas Safe Registered engineers carry ID cards which tell you which appliances they are qualified to work on.

Should I always follow the advice of a Gas Safe Registered engineer?

If your engineer recommends that more work needs to be done on your appliance always follow the advice given. If you have doubts over the advice follow it in the interim period and contact Gas Safe Register for further advice.

Does HSENI recommend the use of carbon monoxide alarms?

HSENI strongly recommends the use of CO alarms as one useful precaution to give advance warning of CO in property. Importantly, alarms should not be regarded as a replacement for regular maintenance and safety checks by a Gas Safe Registered engineer. CO alarms cost from £15 and can be purchased in most hardware shops. Before purchasing a CO alarm, always ensure it complies with British Standard EN 50291 and carries a British or European approval mark, such as a Kitemark. CO alarms should be installed and maintained in line with the manufacturer's instructions.

Why are ventilation and flues so important?

To help operate safely, all gas appliances need the following:

  • An adequate supply of air to help the complete combustion of gas;
  • efficient operation of their flue to remove any combustion products, including carbon monoxide (CO), that are produced

Without these safety precautions dangerous levels of carbon monoxide can build up with the possibility of fatal consequences. There are some easy ways to help avoid the build up of carbon monoxide poisoning:

  • never block ventilation;
  • ensure that flues are kept clear at all times;
  • Have your appliance regularly maintained and annually serviced by a Gas Safe Registered engineer.

Further Advice and Information

Carbon Monoxide Topic Page

Domestic Gas Leaflet

Landlords Duties

Gas Safe Register - 0800 408 5500

Public Health Agency - 028 9031 1611

Gas company contact details:

Phoenix Natural Gas - 08454 55 55 55

Firmus Energy Customer Care Line - 08456 08 00 88

Calor Gas Northern Ireland Limited - 028 9045 5588

Flogas - 028 9073 2611