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Facebook discussion - Gas questions

Gas Services Manager Steve Chambers joined L&Q's social media team in September 2015 for another L&Q Live session. This time, the topic was gas.

If you couldn't make the live discussion, we have the questions and answers below.

Q1: How do I operate my boiler?
Sheila, Romford

Hi Sheila,
We have four boiler manufacturers in our properties (Worcester, Vaillant, Baxi/Potterton & Ideal) which vary in model. If you ever have trouble, check your manufacturer guide, get in touch with our Facebook team, or ask the gas engineer during the annual check.

Q2: I have no heating or hot water. Can I fix this or shall I report it to L&Q?
Ahmed, Bermondsey

Hi Ahmed, theres a few simple checks you can do first:

  • Make sure you have money on the meter if you pay for your gas that way.
  • Check the room thermostat is turned up and the batteries dont need changing
  • If the radiators have valves on, make sure these are turned up
  • Check the boiler timer is set correctly to switch on when you need it to

If this doesnt work, we'd suggest contacting L&Q so we can send a fully qualified gas engineer to assess the boiler fully.

Q3: Why do I need to bother with my annual gas check? My boiler is fine and I dont want to take a day off work.
Bradley, Maidstone

We appreciate its frustrating taking days off, Bradley, but as a responsible landlord, L&Q performs annual gas safety checks to ensure our residents' gas safety and the safe and correct operation of appliances. It is also a legal requirement under the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) regulations 1998, in particular regulation 36, which requires the landlord to carry out annual gas safety checks on appliances.

Q4: I have a two-year old child and I was told I have to wait almost four days for an engineer to come round. Why is this taking so long to fix?
Kelly, Tooting

Hi Kelly, sorry to hear that your boiler is faulty. We have a contract in place with official target times for attendance, within 72 hours. Im afraid we must ensure we are booking appointments in line with this. If parts are required after this initial visit, we endeavour to have the boiler fixed within five working days.

Q5: What do I do if I smell gas but its not from my boiler?
Mandy, Catford

It doesnt matter where the smell is coming from, its important that we get this checked out. Call L&Q immediately the advisor will ask you to do the following:

  • Do not switch on any electrical appliances
  • Do not switch any lights on or off
  • Do not use naked flames or smoke
  • Open all windows and doors
  • Turn off gas supply at the meter (if able)
  • Don't use any door entry systems - open the door manually if applicable

Transco will be called and our gas contractor will be out within four hours.

Q6: I have hot water everywhere apart from my bath hot tap, would a gas engineer deal with this?
Jess, Pimlico

This would likely be a plumbing issue so if you contact our team, well arrange for someone to call.

Q7: Ive just moved in, can L&Q fit my cooker?
Sinead, Sidcup

The installation of your appliances (including cooker) are your responsibility Sinead. This would be for service and installation. L&Q are responsible for the gas supply already installed. If your gas supply to the cooker is present, then it is the responsibility of your installer to fit and test your cooker.

Q8: Ive been told I need a new boiler, what happens now?
Brian, Hackney

Hi Brian, thanks for getting in touch.

Once the contractor has established the boiler needs replacing, they will submit a report and quote to L&Q's Gas team. If the work is authorised, the contractor will order the boiler and be in contact to arrange an appointment to supply and fit. They have up to 20 working days in which to complete this work, but usually we would expect the boiler to be installed within six working days.

Q9: Why doesn't L&Q replace old boilers?
Terry, Slough

L&Q does replace older boilers, based on age, condition and number of breakdown calls. We do have planned boiler replacements based on boiler life cycle of approximately 15 years, but with any business we are restricted by budget. L&Q plans to change 8% of their stock on an annual basis.

Q10: Why have I received a nasty letter telling me I've missed my safety check when the contractor didn't arrive?
Gary, Woolwich

L&Q has a strict policy for arranging gas safety checks due to its legal obligations. We have to follow a due process that allows L&Q to comply with its legal obligations. We use standard letters which go out for any access issues. We are disappointed that our contractor has not met their appointment commitment to you and this will be taken up with the contractor in question.

The contractor should be making a clear appointment with you and we expect them to stick to this, and explain how you can change the appointment if it's inconvenient. It is important to L&Q and its residents that gas safety checks are completed on an annual basis.