Heating, Ventilating & Plumbing
Struggles ahead for housing industry

The UK housing industry is facing 'serious headwinds' and will not be improved without much needed finance measures according to real estate services firm, Jones Lang LaSalle.

Consultation on changes to simplify RIDDOR launched

The Health & Safety Executive (HSE) has opened a 12-week consultation on proposals to simplify and clarify the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR).

Paisley joiner gets community service after unsafe gas installation causes explosion

A self-employed joiner was sentenced to 300 hours of community service last week, after a gas cooker he illegally installed exploded, severely injuring two people.

APHC urges government solar task force to take cautious approach

In a recent DECC blog, Minister for Energy & Climate Change Gregory Baker outlined plans to bring down the costs of solar installations for consumers.

Construction turnover in Q2 increasing but businesses remain cautious

Construction firms are reporting a marked improvement in trading performance in the second quarter of 2012, according to the latest Business Factors Index from invoice finance specialists Bibby Financial Services (BFS).

Bristan opens nominations for SHINE awards

Bristan is opening up its internal awards scheme to its customers and suppliers, who can now recognise the efforts of Bristan employees who go above and beyond the call of duty.

Get Ready for CE Marking

The Construction Products Directive (CPD) is being replaced by the Construction Products Regulation (CPR) which means that CE marking will become mandatory in the UK. Manufacturers of solid fuel and biomass equipment will have until July 2013 to make sure their products meet the CE requirements of the new regulation.

Insulation industry report puts emphasis on customer protection

The report on the operation of the home insulation market from the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has been welcomed by government and the Cavity Insulation Guarantee Agency (CIGA).

Green Deal is 'not in the public interest'

In an open letter, John Colling of MARC Group explains why he believes the Green Deal is not in the public interest.

Gas Safety Trust to help implement CO recommendations

The Gas Safety Trust has announced it will work with the All-Party Parliamentary Gas Safety Group (APPGSG) to implement the recommendations outlined in the recent APPGSG report.

Calor issues safety warning after oil drum death

Calor Gas has warned about the dangers of tampering with gas cylinders after an Oxfordshire man was killed trying to turn an empty oil drum into a barbecue.

BMF explains Green Deal opportunities to tradesmen

The Green Deal offers real business opportunities for tradesmen, according to the Builders' Merchants Federation (BMF), which is working with the Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC) to promote the scheme.

New scheme launched to improve fuel oil quality

The Federation of Petroleum Suppliers (FPS) is introducing a new Fuel Certification scheme to improve the quality of fuel oil and raise standards in the industry.

Small businesses 'shouldn't pay for health and safety inspections'

Health & Safety Executive (HSE) plans to force small businesses to pay for their own health and safety inspections have been criticised by the Forum of Private Business (FPB).

New guidance released to improve domestic energy efficiency

The Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC) has released new guidance to help local authorities in England improve the energy-efficiency of their residential housing.

Construction and manufacturing insolvencies top 9,000

Over 5,000 construction companies, and over 3,500 manufacturing companies, have been declared insolvent since September 2010, reveals PriceWaterhouseCoopers.

Plumber who left house at risk of 'lethal' explosion gets suspended sentence

The Health & Safety Executive (HSE) is urging people who had work carried out by Staffordshire plumber Mark Austin to contact them, after he received a suspended sentence for leaving a house at risk of a 'lethal' explosion.

Compensation scheme for Asbestos linked cancer patients

A tariff scheme to compensate future mesothelioma victims where the liable employer or employers' liability insurer cannot be traced is being cautiously welcomed by the British Safety Council (BSC).

Solar panels still have investment value for homeowners

Solar panels will still offer very good investment returns for domestic properties despite the coming reduction in Feed-in Tariff (FiT) levels, according to the Solar Trade Association (STA).

Don't forget to nominate your favourite UK builders' and plumbers' merchant!

There are still seven weeks to make your nominations for the Builders' Merchants Awards for Excellence - the construction industry's only dedicated ceremony to reward builders', plumbers' and timber merchants in the UK.

New qualifications to prepare NEETs to work in construction

New qualifications from EAL will give 16 to 24 year olds who are not in employment, education or training skills to help them gain training and work in the construction industry.

B&ES president highlights industry's Olympic success

The "enormous contribution" made by the construction industry to this month's London Olympic Games has been highlighted by Sue Sharp, the incoming president of the Building & Engineering Services Association (B&ES).

Builder fined after causing death of elderly couple

A builder has been given community service and fined £75,000 after work he carried out caused the death of an elderly couple from carbon monoxide poisoning.

Minister calls cash-in-hand payments to the trade 'morally wrong'

A Treasury Minister has said paying tradesmen in cash in order to receive a discount for work carried out was "morally wrong".

Surrey plumber jailed for 12 months for tax evasion

A plumber from Surrey who avoided paying income tax for five years has been jailed for 12 months for tax evasion after investigators uncovered £50,000 of unpaid taxes.

Triton campaigns for thermostatic showering

Shower manufacturer Triton has launched a campaign to help raise the profile of thermostatic showering after a survey showed most homeowners are unaware of the safety benefits.

Green Energy EU launches 'alternative' to government Green Deal

Green Energy (EU) has launched an alternative to the government's Green Deal which allows households to pay for their initial solar investment in a short period of time.

APHC achieves UKAS accreditation for Green Deal

The Association of Plumbing & Heating Contractors can now operate a Green Deal Competent Person Scheme and certify installers in preparation for the scheme's launch in October.

New website supports gas industry

Gas engineers and plumbers can now benefit from an online library of over 8,000 manuals thanks to a free industry website.

Final changes to FiT published

The future of the FiT scheme was established by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) today, following consultation in February.

DECC announces non-domestic RHI consultation

Installers are being asked to weigh in on the future of the non-domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) scheme today, as Government launches a consultation to try and provide greater certainty to the market.

HSE issues guidance on its cost recovery scheme

Guidance for a cost recovery scheme being introduced by the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) outlines the risks and regulations in advance.

The demand for controlled ventilation

Steve Mongan, head of marketing at Xpelair Ventilation Solutions, discusses fixed vs demand controlled ventilation (DCV) and asks which system type is best.

APHC proves competence

The Association of Plumbing & Heating Contractors (APHC) Certification ltd. has achieved accreditation as a Competent Persons Scheme Operator.

First CoRE breakfast meeting for installers

A leading expert on energy reduction in building projects will share his expertise at the first Centre of Refurbishment Excellence (CoRE) breakfast event, on Tuesday, 24

Over a third of construction SMEs are cutting jobs, says Federation of Master Builders

Employment prospects for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the construction sector are continuing to deteriorate, according to survey figures.

CBI welcomes UK Guarantees scheme

Chancellor George Osborne announced multiple measures to fund major infrastructure projects today, which he claims could lead to £50bn of spending in the economy.

Local authority fined for gas safety failings

The London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham was fined £83,600 last week for failing to arrange annual safety checks on gas appliances in tenant accommodation.

Illegal gas fitter escapes jail

A Barnsley plumber who posed as a qualified gas engineer, leaving a household in danger, was given a suspended sentence yesterday.

Restrictions and fines brought in as first Olympic Lanes open

Heathrow welcomes record numbers through its gates and Olympic lanes are opened on the M4 from Heathrow into central London.

Homeowners can now control their central heating on the go

Homeowners could save up to £140 a year on energy bills thanks to a remote heating control system launched by British Gas this week.

Rising energy prices 'a real concern'

Over half the country are very concerned about rising energy prices, with more than 80% saying they think a lot about how they can save energy in the home, according to a new survey from the Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC).

EU Directive 'could scupper Green Deal'

A European Directive that wants to end the reduced 5% VAT rate on energy-saving products could scupper the Green Deal, warns the Builders' Merchants Federation.

Baxi welcomes increased minimum boiler warranties for Green Deal

Baxi has welcomed the recent government announcement that boilers eligible for installation using Green Deal funding must have a five-year warranty.

Housing market continues to stutter

The UK housing market continued to stutter last month, as demand failed to pick up and the supply of new properties coming onto the market fell, according to the latest Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) UK Housing Market survey.

Overheating in new homes is a real concern for NHBC

The NHBC Foundation has launched a new guide to help housebuilders and designers deal with the growing problem of overheating in newbuild homes.

Illegal gas fitter 'endangered lives'

An illegal gas fitter who carried out dangerous work on a gas fire in Colchester has been fined over £10,000.

Manufacturers support campaign for bio-liquids in RHI

A number of manufacturers have written to government in support of the campaign to have bio-liquids included in the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI).

EUA appoints Carl Arntzen as this year's president

Carl Arntzen, managing director of Bosch Thermotechnology, which includes Worcester Bosch Group, has been named this year's president of the Energy & Utilities Alliance.

Half of East London building sites are 'dangerous', says HSE

Almost half of the refurbishment construction projects in and around Stamford Hill in North East London failed health and safety spot checks last week, according to the Health & Safety Executive.