Heating, Ventilating & Plumbing
Work smarter, not harder

Carrie Young looks at how installers can make the most of their smartphones or tablets and the business support tools available to them

Direct supply to Gas Safe installers can cut out the cowboys

Andrew Crown believes direct supply of domestic boilers exclusively to selected Gas Safe registered installers is key to ensuring customer safety, thereby cutting out installers who are not Gas Safe registered.

I got 99 problems but my job ain’t one

Even the most experienced and skilled of installers can face problems from time-to-time. While we know some challenges can be unavoidable, the customer usually won’t appreciate excuses and will still expect the job to get completed on time and within budget. Chris Ingram looks at the most prominent examples of this and offers some top tips on how to handle the situation.

UN Climate Change Conference promises new era of UK energy efficiency legislation, says Elmhurst Energy

Martyn Reed believes the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris may mark a renewed focus on energy efficiency in the UK, following the dramatic cuts to ECO, the Green Deal and the Feed in Tariff (FiT).

Advising business owners on the benefits of water saving devices

Water usage is a part of life that many people have become more aware of in recent years. Be it in terms of the potential savings cutting water consumption can provide, or as part of an awareness of the effect wasting water can have on the environment, interest in this area is unlikely to dry up anytime soon, says Tony Ellerker

Green Deal failure leaves energy saving gap for landlords that needs to be filled

Karim Goudiaby explains why the Green Deal failed landlords and outlines what he feels is the way forward for energy saving in the private rented sector.

Skills shortage provides opportunity for savvy construction job hunters

Martyn Makinson discusses the shortage of skilled workers in construction and provides tips to help candidates improve their chances of securing a job.

Poor ventilation: an office worker’s worst enemy

Tony Ellerker explains why proper ventilation is a must have in working environments and why everyone, from installers to office workers, can benefit from being aware of the associated health benefits.

The importance of health and safety in protecting your assets

Lucie Simpson outlines the dangers of not having proper health and safety procedures in place.

Jobs could be at risk if sector support is slashed

Hundreds of jobs could be at risk if support and subsidies for the renewable energy sector are slashed without proper consideration of the impact on the fast-growing sector, says Andy Boroughs.

Make changes to ensure summer is a profitable period

There are a number of ways installers can increase profits in what is traditionally a quiet period, says Peter Northwood, director of Connected Homes at HomeServe’s free Smart Installer Club.

Shining a light on carbon monoxide, the silent killer

John Lawless urges gas installers and engineers to help spread awareness of carbon monoxide poisoning and its symptoms.

The smart meter roll-out: putting the control in the hands of the consumer

The energy industry is embracing a long-awaited modernisation and, with the national roll-out of smart gas and electricity meters, the last analogue customer experience will finally enter the digital age, says Naomi Adams

Quality made in Britain

Tony Fisher, director of quality at John Guest, reveals what he believes 'Made in Britain' really means

Making payment as easy as possible

Neil Aitken gives advice to small businesses on how to keep cashflow moving

How to save a life

Tim Jack highlights the vital role carbon monoxide alarms can play in a home, after a widow was put at risk by emissions from the ash of her multi-fuel burner

Industry calls for centralised body for legislation and new regulations

Tony Gittings argues that the industry is in dire need of a central body or council to co-ordinate the burgeoning weight of new and pending standards, legislation and codes of practice. This includes emerging support technologies such as BiM, which he said needs clear and concise communication to the marketplace.

How to sell a smart thermostat in five easy steps

The Smart Installer Club has developed a simple step-by-step guide to help you explain the benefits of smart thermostats to your customers. Peter Northwood, director at HomeServe Alliance, the company behind the Smart Installer Club, explains.

Top six LPG myths busted

Alastair Lovell from Calor, dispels the most common myths about LPG.

Installers urged to check they are compliant with current piping standards

Installers could unknowingly be in breach of British Standards when it comes to recirculating systems, warns Mark Dowdeswell

HVAC industry needs someone to deal with new legislation

Tony Gittings argues that the industry is in dire need of a central body or council to co-ordinate the burgeoning weight of new and pending standards, legislation, Codes of Practice

Clueing up installers for commercial sustainability

Phil Marris discusses how new MEES energy standards present installers with opportunities to drive refurbishment of HVAC systems in the rental market and commercial buildings

Dealing with hard water in your customer’s homes

Hard water is a problem in many homes in the UK. Sophie Mellor shares her top tips on handling hard water issues and preventing homes from being affected in the future.

DECC Central Heating Fund – time to take advantage

It’s a race against time for Local Authorities to claim their share of a £25 million Central Heating Fund announced by the Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC) this March. Applications are being accepted until 5 June 2015, so time really is of the essence, explains Sally Davison

Steady growth in the UK Space Heating market

Keith Taylor, director of AMA Research, gives an overview of the space heating market.

Ask for Underfloor reviews party manifestos ahead of the general election

With the General Election fast approaching and polls suggesting it will be a closely fought battle before the next government is decided, Colin Timmins of BEAMA Underfloor reviews the parties’ manifestos and what they could mean for the heating industry.

Insulating for a better future

As each party broadcasts their manifesto in the run up to the General Election, John Sinfield comments on the announcements.

Five ways to boost customer loyalty

Teres Hager of 1Gas shares her five top tips for increasing customer loyalty and ensuring repeat business.

Seven steps to better cash flow management

Lee Swinerd advises how to safeguard against poor cash flow

CO testing on commissioning a condensing boiler – one year on

Roger Webb from the Heating & Hotwater Industry Council (HHIC) reflects on the TB 143 CO testing procedure.

Can we breathe easy with the new CDM Regulations?

With new Construction (Design and Management) Regulations coming into force this month, Cedrec’s Gareth Billinghurst asks what’s next for building site safety.

Helping insulation installers stay Gas Safe

Thanks to the introduction of the government’s Green Deal and ECO schemes there has been a spike in the number of homeowners looking to make energy-saving improvements to their homes. Mark Krull, from Logic Certification, explains the potential gas safety risks surrounding insulation.

The quiet evolution of the ‘techie tradesman’

YourTradeBase explains how the internet and other technological developments have brought about the 'techie tradesman', and what it means for business opportunities.

Hopes for the Budget

Ahead of the final Budget of this Parliament, Chris Ingram of BEAMA Underfloor sets out his hopes for the announcement on Wednesday 18 March.

Landlords urged to bring properties up to spec

Landlords should act now to ensure their properties meet new energy efficiency regulations, urges energy efficiency specialist Peter Thom

It’s time to talk TPI

As heating controls develop, installers must become better acquainted with technology such as time proportional integral control (TPI), according to Andy Mansfield, marketing manager at Honeywell.

Take care of your vehicle this winter

As the colder months continue, installers will needs to take more care on the roads as reduced visibility and hazardous road conditions increase the likelihood of a breakdown or accident. fuelGenie has compiled these simple winter driving tips to keep tradespeople safe on the roads this winter.

Are you better off leaving medical school and becoming a plumber?

Most school leavers are faced with the classic proposition of choosing which path to take, leave the homestead and head off into the big wide world of University or ‘learn a trade’ and get an immediate job. The former is often thought to be the ‘sensible’ choice, with the trade option meant to be one fraught with difficulty, but for all the talk of glass ceilings it seems to be the most pragmatic option, says Matthew Pierce.

Three ways to make a better business

Working conditions may not have changed much for those in the plumbing and ventilation industry, but things have moved on massively in the last few years on the technology front. So, as a tech-savvy tradesmen, how can you use technology to grow your business and make it more efficient? Benjamin Dyer gives HVP his top tips.

Uniting together to champion energy efficiency

Liz Male discusses how the Big Energy Vision is helping UK consumers take control of their energy bills.

Raise the volume on awareness of noise induced hearing loss

It’s estimated there are 20,000 new cases of work-related noise induced hearing loss (NIHL) diagnosed in the UK each year, despite it being the only type of hearing loss that is completely preventable. Lee Wright explains.

What if there was a 5-a-day for energy?

Sam Kennedy looks at five simple actions that could save people up to £100 per year

Plumbers lead London job revival

Charlie Mullins believes training up new plumbers is key to economic recovery.

Installers encouraged to capitalise on colder weather by selling domestic RHI and renewable heating to homeowners

With frosty weather on the horizon, Stephen Knight is calling for installers across the UK to push the benefits of air source heat pumps (ASHP) to homeowners in time for them to reap the financial and environmental benefits of making the switch this winter.

Advice for SME's on how to avoid insurance scares

AXA Business Insurance warns that many small businesses could be sleep-walking into prosecution and financial difficulties simply because of oversights when arranging their insurance.

New survey reveals shocking failure of government to address payment issue

Barry Ashmore talks about the 'betrayal of the specialist contractor' following findings that they are still suffering from payment abuse

Five scaffolding safety 'don'ts'

Scaffold Towers takes a look at what to avoid when working at height, in order to reduce the risk of injury.

How fluctuations in weather and temperature affect productivity

Andrews Sykes looks at the implications of an uncomfortable working environment and how modern air conditioning delivers productivity-boosting cooling coupled with highly cost-effective heating

The progression of plumbing

Jennifer Smith, of Conwy Valley Plumbing, takes a look at the evolution of plumbing and some of the technological advances that make installers' lives that little bit easier.

Bendy bananas and hand-pumped hoovers

Yvonne Orgill explains how some unusual EU regulations prompted the creation of the European Water Label Scheme.