HETAS Technical Bulletin 8

HETAS Technical Bulletin 8HETAS Technical Bulletin 8 Cover

Last week we published HETAS Technical Bulletin 8 with updates on hot topics, including an update on direct air guidance, system chimneys and distance to combustibles, commissioning records and the latest FAQ’s from the helpline team. All the Technical Bulletins are available in the HETAS Technical Area.

The eighth installment of the HETAS Technical Bulletin. In this edition of the bulletin we include updates on the following topics:

  • Complying with the Energy Labelling Directive
  • Revision of the HETAS Commissioning Record
  • Further Guidance for Direct External Air Supply
  • Latest from the Technical Helpline
  • Metal System Chimneys and Clearances to Combustibles

As well as giving our stakeholders this sort of support, HETAS is very much involved with standards setting in the UK and Europe. Part of our role is to support installers, retailers, sweeps and manufacturers by encouraging safe, but pragmatic standards and Building Regulations guidance that is fit for purpose but not over burdensome on our industry and we hope you find 5the bulletins informative.

Find out more

Click here to access the HETAS Technical Area where you can download each of the bulletins and much more information exclusively available to HETAS Registered Installers, Approved Sweeps and Retailers. Detailed guidance can be found on the following topics:

  • Direct External Air Supply
  • Energy Labelling
  • Support Documentation – risk assessments | complaints | quotation templates
  • HSE guidance links
  • All of our monthly e-newsletters

If you have a technical question you can contact the helpline team on 01684 278194 or email technical@hetas.co.uk.

Copies of the new External Air Supply Commissioning Record can be purchased by installers in the HETAS Shop.

The articles produced as a result of conversations we have with registrants, training centres and inspectors, but we are always welcoming of suggestions on articles that would be of benefit to our registrants.

Click here to get in touch with the HETAS team.

From the Helpline

HETAS Technical Bulletin 6 CoverIt’s been a busy time on the HETAS Technical Helpline. Some of the common themes for April include distance to combustibles, CO alarm requirements and positioning and of course external air supply with our latest guidance being sent out in the latest Technical Bulletin.

We have also had a number of enquiries about the Renewable Heat Incentive as the consultation which ended on the 27th April. We recently held a webinar to provide information on those wanting to respond to the consultation. As soon as we have more information we’ll share the information in our regular updates with results due to be published at www.gov.uk/government/consultations/the-renewable-heat-incentive-a-reformed-and-refocused-scheme.

We will be adding some FAQs to the Technical Area over the coming months and building your library of information, but if you do have a specific question please do not hesitate to contact Stephen, Garry and Gary on the helpline by calling 01684 278170 (option 3) or email technical@hetas.co.uk.

Working with Building Control

Working with Building Control (Appendix A) as part of Approved Document J

A recent roundtable hosted by HETAS revealed a number of issues that are affecting both the biomass and wood-burning stoves markets. One of the key areas of discussion was the issues surrounding the ‘signing off’ or ‘notification’ of solid fuel & biomass installations and the evident confusion over a HETAS installer’s role in assisting Building Control to sign off a job as being compliant to Building Regulations.

When looking to buy a home or secure buildings insurance for example, it is important to note that that existing installations must have been notified to Local Authority Building Control by the homeowner or by the builder/ installer concerned.  This notification, or lack of to some degree, is being recognised as an area of concern which needs legislation and enforcing. The subject was discussed recently at a Government meeting. Those present including the Technical Director of Local Authority Building Control (LABC) and the relevant person from the Ministry of House, Communities and Local Government. As this is a matter that effects all areas where self-certification is an option, MHCLG subsequently wrote to the CEO’s of all Local Authorities.

Mike Harvey, Training and Technical Manager at HETAS says, “If an installer is a registrant of a competent person self-certification scheme like HETAS, and the work undertaken is within their categories of competence, then they will notify through their scheme. However if the work undertaken by the installer is not within their recorded competence at the scheme, they cannot notify through their scheme. The only option is to go through Building Control at the local authority or in some cases via an approved inspector.”

HETAS acknowledges the wide range of skills that Building Control Officers have and the necessity for their continuous professional development. An increasing number of Local Authorities have taken the view that solid fuel and biomass training covering requirements within Approved Document J, its interaction with Approved Document F, other Approved Documents and associated Standards would be needed; upon taking this into consideration they have decided that this area of work would be best dealt with by people with specialist training and equipment.

Mike says, “Where a Building Control Officer is unsure about the safety or compliance of a job, he/she might ask for supporting information from a HETAS registered installer. It is likely that the registered installer would say that they cannot sign off the work of another person. In cases such as these the installer would not be ‘signing off an installation’.

“There is a caution in that neither a HETAS Registrant nor a Building Control Officer can definitively appraise some areas of the work undertaken e.g. around the outside of the chimney liner or in places where there is no real access. Consequently the Building Control Officer would be asking the HETAS Registrant for their best endeavours, ensuring appropriate testing where practical so that he/she can advise the Building Control Officer.

“The HETAS installer would be simply checking as much as they reasonably can maybe visually, plus perhaps flue draft, smoke test or whatever is appropriate and advising the Building Control Officer of their findings.”

“It is then for the Building Control Officer to make a decision based on their own skills and experience, plus the supplementary information supplied by the installer.”

“This combination of skills and checks is considered to be a robust way to address the situation.”

Mike adds, “HETAS has not been involved in discussion about who bears the cost of such an inspection but it seems reasonable that the person having the work done might be responsible.  Things are of course much clearer and simpler when a HETAS registrant undertakes the work and self-certificates to HETAS.”

“Should a Building Control Officer ask for assistance from a HETAS qualified installer to carry out an inspection to ascertain compliance they should use the form stated in Appendix A on page 70 of Approved Document J,  because, ultimately the BCO is signing the job off and not the HETAS installer.”

“Indeed, not all of our registrants will remember that HETAS have an agreement with Local Authority Building Control permitting them to assist a Building Control Officer. Anyone seeking clarity or experiencing difficulties engaging help and support should contact HETAS technical helpline.”

“Installers are aware that whilst the space to fit an appliance is often limited – determined by the shape of the room or location of the chimney breast – there are other factors that must be considered to ensure that the appliance adheres to Part J of Building Regulations.”

“This section of Building Regulations, which outlines requirements for combustion appliances and fuel storage systems, is often referenced during our helpline conversations. For example, questions around the use of Chimneys and flues relate to the requirements for discharge of products of combustion (J2) and protection of building (J4). These regulations and other relevant guidance including manufacturer’s instructions serve to ensure that products are installed compliantly, assuring end users in the use of the installation”.

“It’s great to see our installers are paying such close attention to these requirements and  taking them seriously by phoning for advice if the requirements are not clear for them,” says Mike.

HETAS is proud to have the support from various sectors and organisations in the industry. Working alongside influential organisations such as BFCMASFA and the SIA allows the technical team to provide the most up-to-date information and educated advice.

“Ultimately our aim is to be recognised as the go-to resource for any domestic heating related queries so that we can continue to encourage the improvement of products and promote high standards of quality, design, safety and efficiency.”

Contact the HETAS Technical Helpline to discuss this further, technical@hetas.co.uk or call 01684 278194.

HETAS is recruiting

Trainee Technical Advisor

HETAS Limited are seeking a ‘Trainee Technical Advisor’ to join the team at their offices in Tewkesbury. An opportunity for further learning and development for anyone wishing to pursue a Technical career within the Heating Industry.

The main purpose of the position will be to answer enquiries surrounding the installation of Solid fuel and Biomass alongside other members of the HETAS registration and technical team on the HETAS Technical Helpline and accompany HETAS Inspectors on installation inspections

Full training will be provided to further enhance any of the below.

  • Experience in Domestic Heating/Plumbing and Solid Fuel
  • A relevant qualification (NVQ /City & Guild / EAL / HETAS/ Technical Certificate)
  • Previous experience in Solid fuel and Biomass
  • Knowledge of the Building Regulations
  • Ability to learn quickly and develop an expertise in technical matters.
  • Flexible attitude, proactive in supporting registrants and colleagues
  • Effective communication skills with people at all levels
  • Computer awareness and ability to search sources of information.
  • Experience in using office software AutoCAD – InDesign

HETAS is the official body recognised by Government to approve biomass and solid fuel domestic heating appliances, fuels and services.

Helpline operating hours Monday to Thursday 9am-5pm and Friday 9am-4.30pm.

Salary dependant on experience

Interested applicants should submit their CV along with a covering letter to Michael Harvey:

Email to:   Michael.Harvey@hetas.co.uk

Post to: HETAS Limited Severn House Unit 5 Newtown Trading Estate Green Lane Tewkesbury GL20 8HD

No agencies.

HETAS Registrant Technical Helpline

HETAS Technical Helpline Number

HETAS Technical Helpline Contact

From Thursday 1st August 2013 the HETAS Technical Helpline will have a new number along with a dedicated email. Please update your records with the new contacts as the existing number will not be available from this Thursday. Your new contact details for the HETAS technical helpline are as follows

Helpline: 01684 278194

Email: technical@hetas.co.uk

The technical helpline will be available to HETAS Registered Installers, HETAS Approved Retailers and Approved Chimney Sweeps. The helpline is open Monday to Friday from 8.30am to 5pm (closing at 4.30pm on Fridays). The team will be available to answer all your queries on regulations, standards, installation and much more. Have your registration details at hand when calling for the team to verify your registration with HETAS.