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  • FIRST POST
    • Jlawson118
    • By Jlawson118 10th Dec 19, 2:03 PM
    • 1,053Posts
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    Jlawson118
    Position of my boiler flue - dangerous?
    • #1
    • 10th Dec 19, 2:03 PM
    Position of my boiler flue - dangerous? 10th Dec 19 at 2:03 PM
    Apologises ahead of the long story:

    So last year I bought and moved into my one bedroom, ground floor apartment and the boiler has been playing up from time to time. It got me through last winter and then started playing up for hot water within the summer.
    But the way this is designed now - I have a specific boiler cupboard where the boiler is contained, and then then the flue travels over my hall way and living room, quite a way to my outside wall, where I have hatches all the way though the ceiling to inspect, and then my own private garden to access it easily. The apartment block is about 15 years old and it's likely the boiler is the original boiler.

    I had British Gas come out and quote me for a new boiler around July/August. I took a fancy to their two year 0% finance offer. The surveyor told me there would be complications with the install unless I had it moved to an outside wall, due to the length of the flue. Now my apartment is quite spacious but I wasn't keen on losing so much space so I did ask if it could still be installed in the same place, and he said yes.

    But the bill was going to be hefty even if placed onto an outside wall, and the surveyor recommended their service plan instead of going ahead with the install to get my current one repaired. I've had a few recommendations of this plan, so I went ahead with it.

    Now the lady who came and serviced it diagnosed my issues, gave me a really good deal and price and completed a lot of work on it. I was very happy. Though a few weeks ago it started going again, and another engineer came out and told me the boiler needs to be condemned due to the position of the flue being illegal?
    He looked up into the hatches and admitted the flue was in perfect condition but tried to condemned the boiler and filled in paperwork to claim I've refused to have it switched off. Stuck a sticker on the boiler saying "Danger, do not use" and was scaremongering saying this was illegal and should not be used.

    The original engineer came back and told me it is considered dangerous in their eyes as they have quite strict rules, but she had no issues with taking me on contract and having my boiler in use. Removed the sticker and placed it on top of the boiler so it's still there but nobody can see it..

    So my query is, what are the rules on a boiler/flue position? Am I allowed to have it in a specified cupboard that's not on an external wall? One surveyor for the company was quite happy to quote me for works of it being in the same place, whereas a service engineer from the same company has tried to condemn the boiler for this reason?
Page 1
    • FreeBear
    • By FreeBear 10th Dec 19, 3:14 PM
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    FreeBear
    • #2
    • 10th Dec 19, 3:14 PM
    • #2
    • 10th Dec 19, 3:14 PM
    and another engineer came out and told me the boiler needs to be condemned due to the position of the flue being illegal?
    He looked up into the hatches and admitted the flue was in perfect condition but tried to condemned the boiler and filled in paperwork to claim I've refused to have it switched off. Stuck a sticker on the boiler saying "Danger, do not use" and was scaremongering saying this was illegal and should not be used.
    Originally posted by Jlawson118
    The HSE has issued safety notices about gas flues in voids. The Gas Safe advice is - https://www.gassaferegister.co.uk/help-and-advice/gas-safety-in-the-home/get-your-appliances-checked/flues-in-voids/
    itís a good idea to have inspection hatches fitted to access the flue. If a Gas Safe registered engineer visits and is unable to view the flue they will classify the appliance as 'At Risk'
    You have inspection hatches so the flue can be examined, so no reason to condemn the boiler on that count. As an extra safety measure, you could have a gas sensor installed in the void connected to a cut-off valve. Certainly get yourself a Carbon Monoxide alarm - For £15 or so, it could save your life.
    Her courage will change the world.

    Treasure the moments that you have. Savour them for as long as you can for they will never come back again.
    • btr30
    • By btr30 10th Dec 19, 4:07 PM
    • 78 Posts
    • 41 Thanks
    btr30
    • #3
    • 10th Dec 19, 4:07 PM
    • #3
    • 10th Dec 19, 4:07 PM
    If your flue was compliant at the time of installation, then it should be highlighted that it is not to current standard, but not necessarily condemned, unless there is a danger such as flue spillage.
    If you replace your boiler it will require to be installed to the current standard, which may require alternative flue arrangements.
    • Jlawson118
    • By Jlawson118 11th Dec 19, 12:24 AM
    • 1,053 Posts
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    Jlawson118
    • #4
    • 11th Dec 19, 12:24 AM
    • #4
    • 11th Dec 19, 12:24 AM
    The HSE has issued safety notices about gas flues in voids. The Gas Safe advice is - https://www.gassaferegister.co.uk/help-and-advice/gas-safety-in-the-home/get-your-appliances-checked/flues-in-voids/

    You have inspection hatches so the flue can be examined, so no reason to condemn the boiler on that count. As an extra safety measure, you could have a gas sensor installed in the void connected to a cut-off valve. Certainly get yourself a Carbon Monoxide alarm - For £15 or so, it could save your life.
    Originally posted by FreeBear
    Already got a carbon monoxide alarm installed! The other engineer tested it and said it was still working with no issues
    • Ectophile
    • By Ectophile 14th Dec 19, 7:12 PM
    • 3,988 Posts
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    Ectophile
    • #5
    • 14th Dec 19, 7:12 PM
    • #5
    • 14th Dec 19, 7:12 PM
    If your flue was compliant at the time of installation, then it should be highlighted that it is not to current standard, but not necessarily condemned, unless there is a danger such as flue spillage.
    If you replace your boiler it will require to be installed to the current standard, which may require alternative flue arrangements.
    Originally posted by btr30

    The problem is that unless the person doing the servicing can inspect the flue for damage, they will condemn it. They have no way to tell whether or not there is a leak in the flue.


    There may be no legal obligation to replace a gas appliance with a concealed flue, but you won't be able to get anyone to sign it off as being safe to use.
    If it sticks, force it.
    If it breaks, well it wasn't working right anyway.
    • FreeBear
    • By FreeBear 15th Dec 19, 12:39 AM
    • 3,519 Posts
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    FreeBear
    • #6
    • 15th Dec 19, 12:39 AM
    • #6
    • 15th Dec 19, 12:39 AM
    The problem is that unless the person doing the servicing can inspect the flue for damage, they will condemn it. They have no way to tell whether or not there is a leak in the flue.
    Originally posted by Ectophile

    Which is why inspection hatches are mandated for any concealed fan assisted flue. The OP has hatches, the "engineer" commented on the condition of the flue, then slapped an At Risk sticker on the boiler.
    Her courage will change the world.

    Treasure the moments that you have. Savour them for as long as you can for they will never come back again.
    • jk0
    • By jk0 15th Dec 19, 8:49 AM
    • 3,285 Posts
    • 27,211 Thanks
    jk0
    • #7
    • 15th Dec 19, 8:49 AM
    • #7
    • 15th Dec 19, 8:49 AM
    The block where I have a rental flat has the same problem. Some of my neighbours have moved the boiler to the outside wall, some converted to an electric boiler, but I have installed storage heaters. Also put a timeswitch on the immersion.


    None of these are ideal solutions, but what else can we do?
    • MeterMan
    • By MeterMan 15th Dec 19, 9:41 AM
    • 392 Posts
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    MeterMan
    • #8
    • 15th Dec 19, 9:41 AM
    • #8
    • 15th Dec 19, 9:41 AM
    Whats the specific wording on the paperwork left by the engineer who 'condemned' it. Did he class it as At Risk, or Immediately Dangerous?
    • Talldave
    • By Talldave 15th Dec 19, 10:49 AM
    • 627 Posts
    • 377 Thanks
    Talldave
    • #9
    • 15th Dec 19, 10:49 AM
    • #9
    • 15th Dec 19, 10:49 AM
    A couple of years ago we were renting a flat where the boiler leaked, rotted the floor and then as it tilted and slowly sank through the floor it was ripping its flue pipe off! Obviously it was condemned. There was a long run of boxed in flue with inspection hatches running through a bedroom. The boxing was ripped off to install the new flue and then re-plasterboarded afterwards.
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