1. Have your gas appliances checked yearly.
If you are on a means tested benefit, pension age or chronically sick or disabled you may be entitled to go on your energy companies Priority Services Register which will entitle you to a free annual gas safety check. Find out whether you could benefit by getting in touch with your energy company.
2. Always check that an engineer is Gas Safe registered.
It is against the law for anyone to do work on gas appliances in the United Kingdom, Isle of Man or Guernsey unless they are on the Gas Safe Register. Always check that an engineer is Gas Safe registered before you let them work in your home on the Gas Safe Register website or by calling 0800 408 5500.
Registered gas engineers will have a Gas Safe ID card
The Gas Safe ID card looks like this:
There are different kinds of registration – for example, someone may be registered to work on your boiler or pipework, but they might not be qualified to install a gas fire. You can check what kind of work they are qualified to do on the back of their card.
3. It’s illegal for someone who works for a Gas Safe-registered business to do private work.
Hiring someone who normally works for a reputable firm, but is doing some extra work ‘on the side’ isn’t the good idea it might seem – it’s actually illegal.
4. Report anyone who you suspect of working on gas illegally.
If you think someone is working on gas illegally, report them to the Gas Safe Register and they will investigate their work.
5. Nominate your gas work for an inspection.
If you’ve had gas work done in the last six months, you can nominate it for a free gas safety inspection from Gas Safe to make sure it’s up to scratch.
6. If you move house, get your appliances tested.
If you move into a new home, don’t assume the appliances are safe – get everything checked by a Gas Safe registered engineer.
7. Know the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning.
Know the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning – it could save your life:
- collapse or loss of consciousness
- symptoms which disappear or get better when you leave home and come back when you return
- other people (and animals) experiencing the same symptoms at the same time
8. Know what to do if you suspect carbon monoxide poisoning.
Know what to do if you suspect carbon monoxide poisoning:
- get fresh air immediately – open the doors and windows
- turn off any gas appliances and turn the gas off at the meter
- extinguish naked flames
- leave the house
- see your doctor immediately or go to hospital – let them know that you suspect carbon monoxide poisoning
- call the Gas Emergency Helpline on 0800 111 999 if you think there’s any danger
9. Check for warning signs that your appliances may not be working properly.
Check for warning signs that your appliances may not be working properly:
- the flame on your gas cooker should be crisp and blue. Lazy yellow or orange flames mean you need to get your cooker checked
- you may see soot or black marks or staining around or on gas appliances
- your pilot lights may go out frequently
- you may see increased condensation inside your windows
10. Get an audible carbon monoxide alarm.
Get an audible carbon monoxide alarm. You can’t taste, smell or see carbon monoxide, so an alarm is a good way to protect yourself. Carbon monoxide alarms look like a smoke alarm and are easy to install and should cost under £20. Make sure the alarm you buy has a British or European approval mark on it, such as a Kitemark.