New guidelines have come into place as of 1 January 2013 that affects how flues are fitted within properties that use room-sealed fan assisted boilers.
This change is more likely to affect those of you that live in a flat or apartment as you are a lot more likely to have a flue that lives in difficult to access parts of the property, such as behind walls and within ceilings.
Why the change?
The change in flue installation guidelines has been introduced to try and reduce the likelihood of carbon monoxide positioning.
Flues perform the role of removing harmful waste gases (produced by the boiler when generating heat) and releasing them to the outside of the property. If this gas (commonly carbon monoxide) were to build up then it can cause illness and in the worst cases death to those that breathe it in.
The regulators therefore want to make it easier for Gas Safe installers to check the integrity of the entire flue in properties where it is currently partially or completely hidden. This will mean any faults are dealt with swiftly.
Most homes won’t be affected by this at all, as it is easy to see the entire length of the flue as it runs from the boiler to the roof or outside wall, however if you think you live in a property whereby your flue is installed behind a wall or ceiling, then it is recommended you gets someone out to look at it sooner rather than later.
What changes would need to be made?
In most cases a Gas Safe Engineer will look to add 300 x 300 mm inspection hatches that will allow Heating Engineers to inspect the flue without any restriction.
If you have just move in it is worth contacting your building company as changes to the flue may be covered. If your home is less than 10 years old it may also be worth contacting your home warranty provider for the same reason.
If you live in rented accommodation that the first port of call should be your landlord, whose legal responsibility it is to ensure the property conforms to all Gas Safe regulations. They must also ensure a carbon monoxide (NO2) alarm is fitted in all rooms within the property that have the flue running through it.
Full details are provided by Gas Safe.