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Discuss Can you work on a boiler if your not Gas Safe? in the Gas Safe Register Forum - Public Forum area at

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  1. Macca2009

    Macca2009 Guest

    Hope someone can clarify this one for me.

    I want to know where I stand on fixing domestic boilers.

    I don't have domestic Gas Safe qualifications. Can I still work on boilers? in this I mean like replacing parts on them like PCB's and fans ect. I don't and never will touch anything gas, ie gas valves and pipework. Where do i stand on doing the other stuff? Am I allowed to so long as I know what I'm doing and competent?

    Is anyone else in this situation and what are the boundaries.

  2. jhon lennon

    jhon lennon Guest

    when any appliance is repaired it needs re commissioning and as you are not gas safe you cant do it sorry if for example you swap a multi speed for you must check gas pressures to ensure it is modulating correctly and i am guessing you wouldn't know how to do this.not wanting to sound awkward but this is why us lads spend years learning and thousands training.
  3. AlexGas

    AlexGas Plumber GSR

    From:Safety in the installation and use of gas systems and appliances
    Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 Approved Code of Practice and guidance.

    “gas fittings” means gas pipework, valves (other than emergency controls), regulators and meters, and fittings, apparatus and appliances designed for use by consumers of gas for heating, lighting, cooking or other purposes for which gas can be used

    “work” in relation to a gas fitting includes any of the following activities carried out by any person, whether an employee or not, that is to say -
    (a) installing or re-connecting the fitting;
    (b) maintaining, servicing, permanently adjusting, disconnecting, repairing, altering or renewing the fitting or purging it of air or gas;
    (c) where the fitting is not readily movable, changing its position; and
    (d) removing the fitting.
    but the expression does not include the connection or disconnection of a bayonet fitting or other self-sealing connector.

    Legally, it's a GSR job. Sorry.
  4. jhon lennon

    jhon lennon Guest

    bang on if plumbers dont get properly registered they are taking a big chance and breaking the law
  5. diamondgas

    diamondgas Trusted Plumber GSR

    macca2009 - Legal stuff aside would you let someone none gsr work on your mothers heating? Just a thought! You can build up a lot of confidence and think you can do the job, maybe you can. Thing is, I know what to look out for safety wise but do you? There are loads of folk who 'give it a go' at repairing their own appliances. Lots manage it without any problems occurring! That's the chance people will take, they visit this forum most every day looking for help, nothing can be done to stop them attempting repairs! But at least this place offers assistance in stopping them potentially harming themselves and others! However if you are wanting to work in someone else's home without the correct training, and even make money doing so, then that to me is immoral and deplorable!!

    IMHO :)
    • Like Like x 3
  6. Paulus

    Paulus Plumber

    I'm not gas safe and would never consider touching a boiler. Instead I have a mate who is gas safe. He gets the boiler work from me and puts some plumbing my way.

    As far as I'm concerned this works well for both parties (although he probably earns more).

    REDSAW Guest

    quote; like replacing parts on them like PCB's and fans ect. I don't and never will touch anything gas,

    this statement shows you dont actually understand the combustion process, in other words-shows your not competent in the eyes of the law!!.

    yes, it may seem easy to pull out a fan and plug in a pcb, but what if its not working right etc, how would you know?.

    imo, you can work on anything under the boiler (except the gas line) and external controls.period.
  8. Simon F

    Simon F Trusted Plumber GSR

    if you can prove that you are "competent" then yes you can do the work ! but the legally recognised way of proving that you are competent is by being a member of the the recognised body for working with gas - Gas safe.
    The way of doing that is what I am close to completing a 2 year NVQ gas course or similar, then registration with Gas Safe, as everyone else has to do.
  9. AWheating

    AWheating Trusted Plumber GSR

    you can hold my tools while i fix the boiler :)
  10. John'o

    John'o Guest

    You can "work" on a boiler if deemed competent and not be GSR registered but it is not a work activity e.g. working on your own boiler or families without payment or reward.

    From L56 Safety in the installation and use of gas systems and appliances
    Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998
    Approved Code of Practice and guidance

    Anyone who does work on a gas fitting or gas storage vessel must be competent to do so, whether or not they are required to be a member of an approved class of persons. Therefore, do-it-yourself gas engineers and those performing favours for friends and relatives all need to have the required competence. The level and range of competence should match the full extent of work done, but needs only to be sufficient for and relevant to that work. Employers of gas fitting operatives are also required under regulation 3(2) to ensure that their employees have the required competence for the work undertaken; in addition to ensuring they are properly experienced and trained (see paragraph 47), this involves ongoing monitoring of performance standards, as necessary.

    The boundries as you put them are if you don't have the training NVQ/City & Guilds/ACS you don't have the competence to carry out the work irrespective of registration, as previously stated the external controls e.g. Timer/Room Stat etc can be worked on by any competent electrician.

    If in doubt don't do it :nonod:
    • Agree Agree x 1
  11. gasmarc

    gasmarc Guest

    There appears to be a grey area where people think they are entitled to work on boilers, Fine change a pcb but it may have to be set up correctly and you cannot do that without checking the gas.And you are legally responsible for anything that could happen , It really gets my goat these have a go DIYERS , I went to a job where some idiot had tried doing a simple job and fortunately for the guy who owned the place he managed to screw the job up. The customer told me he usually does the job himself but got someone else to do it this time, Well this idiot replaced the thermocouple ommiting the interupter and could not get the pilot on. I had this sorted and fired boiler up only for the heat exchanger to be leaking onto the burner , ID it and walked away , The customer was lucky he did not kill a few people
  12. adam84

    adam84 Plumber GSR

    The only circumstances in which an registered plumber can work on gas fittings of any description is as trainee under the direct supervision of a trained/qualified training supervisor such as college lecturer or employer supervising a trainee gas engineer.
    • Like Like x 1
  13. Macca2009

    Macca2009 Guest

    Thank you to all you people who actually gave some sensible advice. By the way I am a qualified plumbing and heating engineer and I do have commercial gas safe qualification. So for all you bigot's who moan about me like a 'have a go DIYer' knock yourself down a peg or two will you. I have currently started working for myself and wanted to know where I stood on fixing boilers and how far I can go with them. I know I can't touch gas and I don't fix anything I'm not competent with. I have actulay phoned Gas Safe and asked them and I have been told I can work on PCB's and fans, just not gas pipes and valves. I'm going to get this verified agian to make sure. But that was all I was after, and not to be moaned at by the dinosaurs on here.

    Have a nice day!!!:smug:
    • Like Like x 1
  14. Hybrid

    Hybrid Guest

    It's makes me laugh that when ever someone doesn't get the answers they were expecting we're bigots and dinosaurs.
    If you're gas qualified already then get yourself registered. Everyone else has to, what makes you so special?

    As for gas safe's reply it surprises me. It's difficult enough getting them to rule on something innocuous let alone the legality of non registered gas work. In fact I reckon you're fibbing about that.
    • Like Like x 2
  15. adam84

    adam84 Plumber GSR

    In technical terms to work on a fan, pump or pcb you would have to take the cover of the boiler and that is classed as being gas work. If you have commercial gas qualifications enrol at your local technical college to do the change over course from commercial COCN1 to CCN1 Domestic and the CEN1 qualification then you can register with gas safe legally, what you have to remember is that the gas industry is a legal mine field so it is better to pay a few hundered £ than risk a fine of thousands. Just my 2c.
    • Like Like x 1
  16. Macca2009

    Macca2009 Guest

    think what you want 'dinosaur' make way for the new breed lol!
  17. Macca2009

    Macca2009 Guest

    Thanks Adam84 for some decent advice
    • Agree Agree x 1
  18. Reg Man

    Reg Man Trusted Plumber GSR

    So if we turn this around, are we also saying that a domestic qualified gas fitter is Ok to work on non-domestic installations? I don't think so. I recommend you do the ACS changover for domestic with your CEN1 then you will be compliant. So agree with you Adam, thats the practical way forward.
    • Like Like x 1
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2012
  19. AWheating

    AWheating Trusted Plumber GSR

    The other day i needed an operation but my doctor was busy so i went to the vets, after all if you can operate on one animal then its got to be all the same meat and veg.
    • Like Like x 3
  20. aggis

    aggis Plumber GSR

    If we [GSR engineers] don't do all the safety checks on the appliance when repairing, & an incident happens afterwards we'll be taken to task !!!
    But, if you read the bulletin... can legally work on a gas appliance.pdf

    Maybe when changing a pump.... we can wear our plumbers hat.

    I think not!!

    I wish Gas Safe would get these issues sorted out with the Government/Health & Safety & make it that only GSR engineers can buy gas appliances & any associated parts, & therefore be the only people to be qualified to carryout the work.

    It could be so easy, use the registration number & password when purchasing at plumbers merchants, [they all use computers] Gives traceability..
    • Like Like x 1
  21. AWheating

    AWheating Trusted Plumber GSR

    how would you even legally get PLI to cover work on gas appliances without being qualified?

    Putting a gas appliance back into a working state and not being competent to check the applaince is safe to leave working, try explaining that one to a judge or a family member of the person who has died as a result, even if it was not something in your control.

    my personal opinion is there is no grey area, and furthermore no reason not to be gas safe/qualified if you want to earn money doing the job. We (GSR engineers) have to pay for all the training and fees involved so why would anyone think we would think its ok for some not to bother? jog on. Im sorry you dont like the answer.

    Why any customer would after you have explained to them your not qualified let you try and fix there gas appliance is another baffling question.
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2012
  22. dancinplumba

    dancinplumba Trusted Plumber GSR

    am a bit confused ??? someone on here said its only if you remove the combustion cover ??? tho i do agree with you adam
  23. CES

    CES Trusted Plumber GSR

    In short, if you want to do domestic work, get the tickets and the registration, same goes for commercial. Why should you get a free ride when we have to pay for both domestic & commercial training, updates and registration. Professional engineers should not be looking for loopholes & shortcuts, they should be upholding the standard of the industry. Cant afford it? Then save up and be legal. Time spending money goes quicker than time in the jail.
  24. glenno1

    glenno1 Guest

    you cannot work on any gas appliance even in your own home without gsr qualifications because a gas explosion in your property puts other people and properties at risk
    • Disagree Disagree x 1
  25. PlumbBobBob

    PlumbBobBob Guest

    or do you not tell them you're not qualified?
  26. adam84

    adam84 Plumber GSR

    You have to remove the combustion casing to access most fans or pumps on modern fan flued boilers so they are right aswell.
  27. fuzzy

    fuzzy Guest

    not as a busniness or for strangers. if competent you can fix your own and family and friends
    • Agree Agree x 1
  28. Clanger

    Clanger Active Member

    I have been fixing boilers for years and was Corgi since its early inception, and am GSR. But, this is my last year, since work has dropped and I can no longer support the overhead for gas.

    A contributor to my decision not to re-register, is that I hardly come across a broken boiler now, where some un-registered neighbour, friend, trainee plumber or DIY guy, has not had a go first.

    Landord safety checks have dropped to £25, and boiler installations for £850 - you can keep your 'professional' gas installer con.

    With Gas Safe having 55,000 or so registered businesses, there are reported to be around 20,000 illegal installers - as the economy bites, this is only going to go one way, despite recent prosecutions for serial illegal installers.

    But the illegal tag, is one which justifies GSR existence - are we as workers so blind that we can't see we are being exploited by a worthless licence to practice system, which cannot provide evidence that it leads to better goods and services to the public.

    New installers will not pick this up, because to become an 'engineer' in weeks is a good deal, along with instant professional identity - badge of competence 'GAS SAFE ENGINEER'. But after five years, these GSR installers will find the renewal costs a little bit more difficult to bear, given they have had to compete with illegals for years, and that they have not made the kind of profits, or living they intended.

    The proverbial will hit the fan with this pretty soon, and the signs will be a reduction in registrations and a rise in the number of small businesses going bust.

    You might get a clue from this Self-employed business opportunity? No thanks | John Harris | Comment is free | The Guardian
    about the way things are going, and how small business is just a feeder for professionals like accountants, bankers and insurers to make money.

    If you are doing well from self employment, then fair play, I take my hat off to you, because your both a grafter and a thinker. But many, perhaps less skilled, less experienced are at the mercy of unbridled capitalism, and an over-supply in the great skills market - its my third recession, and I have not got the energy now to work long hours for minimum wage.
    • Like Like x 3
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 11, 2012
  29. GrahamM

    GrahamM Plumber GSR

    How can Gas Safe advocate a non GSR person working on fans and PCB's, are PCB's and fans not all related to the combustion process with some PCB's controlling the fan and gas? Even more so on zero governed boilers.

    This is a load of male cow dung in my opinion.
    • Like Like x 2
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2012
  30. kay-jay

    kay-jay Trusted Plumber GSR

    there are two ways to go about anything, the right way and the wrong way!

    having said that i do agree that gassafe is an exploitative system, but it does gaurentee a basic level of competency.
  31. quality

    quality Plumber GSR

    I do think that commercial registered folk are placed with different standards etc but they are better placed in industry than domestic registered gs chaps if they have the work.
    if not pay your few hundred quid and step down the ladder
  32. GQuigley67

    GQuigley67 Trusted Plumber GSR

    no you shoulnt be working on boilers you don't even fully understand them by the sounds of it
  33. Clanger

    Clanger Active Member

    Fair comment kay-jay, and there are few that would disagree with your statement.

    But, I hope you will share in my questioning of some of your beliefs:

    Right and wrong, pertains to moral law, and things are usually judged right or wrong by the consensus of the majority, in a democracy - so in order to judge right or wrong, we would have to be represented in some way, by those who make the decisions - who represents the gas installer? and do we trust them to make 'right' decisions on our behalf.

    For example, licence to practice brings about better workmanship - corgi annaual report 2007, documented significant numbers of NCS, AR, and some immediately dangerous installations, on work which had been notified as 'competent' through the gas work notification scheme.

    But, what about the notion of competence? can it be measured accurately using the multiple choice questions and simulated environments that are nothing like real work? Does an assessment taken in college, give an accurate measure of competence or competency in relation to the occupational role of a plumber or gas installer - would you bet your house on it?

    So how can we be assured that the system is valid, reliable and rigorous? Who can assure us?
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2012
  34. GQuigley67

    GQuigley67 Trusted Plumber GSR

    only people that are allowed to work on boilers are gas engineers and now sparks as long as they are with a gas registered company with gas engineers.
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2012
  35. Macca2009

    Macca2009 Guest

    Thanks for the link aggis, this is what I was after. Why do some people make such a deal. Thank you
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