Hav­ing gas in the home puts safety onus on you

Business Day - Home Front - - HOMEFRONT -

THE rapidly in­creas­ing cost of elec­tric­ity has re­sulted in a growth in pop­u­lar­ity among many South African home own­ers to utilise gas in­stal­la­tions in their homes. How­ever, most are un­aware that there are spe­cific reg­u­la­tions that they must com­ply with when in­stalling gas equip­ment in their homes to en­sure their in­sur­ance pol­icy re­mains valid.

Ac­cord­ing to the reg­u­la­tions that were in­tro­duced in 2009, all gas in­stal­la­tions must have a Cer­tifi­cate of Con­form­ity ac­cord­ing to the Pres­sure Equip­ment Reg­u­la­tions that have been pro­mul­gated un­der the Oc­cu­pa­tion Health and Safety Act (No 85 of 1993).

While this may sound like a com­plex, le­gal doc­u­ment, es­sen­tially it is a cer­tifi­cate that states that the in­stal­la­tion has been prop­erly in­spected and has been de­ter­mined to be safe and leak free. It is crit­i­cal that this cer­tifi­cate is also is­sued by an au­tho­rised per­son who is reg­is­tered with the Liq­ue­fied Pe­tro­leum Gas Safety As­so­ci­a­tion of South­ern Africa (LPGAS).

Ac­cord­ing to the reg­u­la­tion, any home owner who has a liq­uid gas in­stal­la­tion must have this cer­tifi­cate, which is usu­ally ob­tained dur­ing the in­stal­la­tion phase. How­ever, all home own­ers con­sid­er­ing gas in­stal­la­tions need to know that the onus is on them, the home owner, to en­sure that they have this cer­tifi­cate in their pos­ses­sion, not the in­staller.

If your home is dam­aged or de­stroyed as a re­sult of a de­fec­tive gas ap­pli­ance and you do not have a valid cer­tifi­cate is­sued by some­one reg­is­tered with LPGAS, the in­sur­ance im­pli­ca­tions could be sig­nif­i­cant.

An in­sur­ance com­pany would be well within their rights to re­pu­di­ate a claim, which could have se­vere fi­nan­cial reper­cus­sions.

Hav­ing the in­stal­la­tion in­spected and ap­proved is quick and easy — pro­vided it has been done cor­rectly — much in line with re­quire­ments for elec­tri­cal in­stal­la­tions that also re­quire a cer­tifi­cate of com­pli­ance un­der the Ma­chin­ery and Oc­cu­pa­tional Safety Act of 1983.

The types of gas in­stal­la­tions that re­quire this cer­tifi­cate in­clude gas fires or braais, gas stoves and ovens, as well as hot LPGAS pro­vides the fol­low­ing use­ful tips re­gard­ing gas safety:

Al­ways use a reg­is­tered in­staller

Al­ways use a qual­i­fied gas dealer

Al­ways use a ver­i­fied and tested gas prod­uct

Al­ways check the seal on a cylin­der matches the brand of the cylin­der

Al­ways check gas ap­pli­ances be­fore use

If you sus­pect your gas ap­pli­ance is un­safe it is best to turn the ap­pli­ance off im­me­di­ately and do not touch it un­til it has been checked by a reg­is­tered gas en­gi­neer. Open all the doors and win­dows to air out the room and en­sure you have shut off the gas sup­ply at the me­ter con­trol valve.

To en­sure your gas in­stal­la­tions are al­ways in top work­ing or­der ask a reg­is­tered gas in­staller to per­form an an­nual main­te­nance and ser­vice check.

For all home­own­ers with gas al­ready in­stalled on their prop­erty or for those plan­ning on do­ing so in the fu­ture, it is vi­tal to en­sure com­pli­ance with all the above reg­u­la­tions not only to en­sure you ad­here to stip­u­la­tions within your home own­ers in­sur­ance pol­icy, but to also make sure you and your pre­cious fam­ily are safe from any gas re­lated dis­as­ters. water sys­tems.

It is vi­tal for all home­own­ers to re­alise that such an in­spec­tion is not just es­sen­tial for their in­sur­ance pol­icy to re­main valid, but even more im­por­tantly, that it is con­ducted to en­sure that the in­stal­la­tion is safe and their fam­ily is not put at risk. If a gas ap­pli­ance has been in­cor­rectly in­stalled and re­sults in a gas leak this could have ma­jor health im­pli­ca­tions for a fam­ily, not to men­tion the huge dan­ger in­volved of an ex­plo­sion.

It is also im­por­tant for home­own­ers to know that if they wish to sell their home and they have a gas ap­pli­ance in­stalled, they are re­quired to ob­tain the cer­tifi­cate and de­liver a copy to the new pur­chaser.

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