Gas safety and servicing
Gas safety is something we all need to take very seriously. As a landlord, we’re legally required to check things like gas fires and boilers every year (see below). And as a tenant, you need to know what to do if you smell gas in your home.
What to do if you can smell gas
If you can smell gas in your home, you should immediately call the National Grid on their gas emergency number: 0800 111 999.
They will give you safety advice, which may include telling you:
- Not to smoke or light matches
- To extinguish any candles or other flames
- To leave all electrical switches as they are – don’t turn anything on or off
- To open doors and windows to ventilate the space
- To turn off your home’s gas supply at the isolation valve (unless this is in a cellar).
You should also contact us to report the problem – but make sure you call the National Grid and follow their advice first. Speak to our dedicated gas team on 0115 844 3845 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm). If you need to contact us over the weekend or in the evening, ring 0800 317 861.
How to turn off your gas
If you need to turn off the gas, you’ll need to find the isolation valve for your home. In a modern property, it’s usually located outside in your meter box. If it’s not there, it may be under the stairs, below the kitchen sink, or in a garage.
To turn off the gas supply, you’ll need to turn the handle so that the lever is at a 90 degree angle to the upright gas pipe.
Making your home safe
The National Grid may need to come to your property to make sure it is safe. Once they’ve done this, it’s likely that we’ll need to send out a gas engineer. The engineer will check all your gas appliances – when they are sure everything is safe, they will switch the gas supply back on.
To help reduce the chances of you having to deal with a gas emergency, we are legally required to carry out safety checks on gas appliances like boilers and fires at least once a year. We’ll write to you to let you know when your gas service is due, and we’ll do our best to make sure we give you an appointment at a time that’s convenient for you. We do have some early evening and Saturday appointments – please contact us to check.
It’s really important that you keep the appointment and let our engineers service your gas appliances, both for your safety and that of your neighbours. If you have a pre-paid meter, you’ll need to make sure there is credit on it at the time of the service.
When the engineer carries out the service, they will check that your heating and hot water systems are working efficiently. They will also check to see whether anything needs upgrading.
If we arrive for your appointment and cannot access your property, either because you are not there or because you will not let the engineer in, you will be charged a fee of £10. We’ll also leave a letter explaining how to arrange a further appointment. If you do not contact us within five working days of the date on the letter, we will start County Court proceeding and apply for an injunction to access your home. You could be faced with a very large bill if you do not provide access to your home and allow the servicing to be done: legal costs will be around £1,000, and we will seek to recover this from you. This may seem harsh, but unserviced gas appliances can be very dangerous, to you and those who live near you.