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Gas Combi Boiler in Bathroom Cupboard and the current Regs?


 
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Streuth

from United Kingdom

Joined: 15 Jul 2010
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Location: United Kingdom

PostPosted: Fri Jul 16, 2010 12:17 am Reply with quote

My post is almost identical to this one http://www.diynot.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=138331&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=0 from a couple of years ago. As regulations seem to be amended every other day, it seemed more appropriate to raise a new post than to hijack an old one.

The boiler is a Worcester Bosch 240 RSF. The boiler/central heating was already installed (I believe by British Gas) when I moved into the property over ten years ago. The cupboard housing the boiler always had louvre doors on, which were apparently fine until a few years ago (I forget exactly how many) when, whilst undergoing a BG homecare service, I was told that I couldn't have doors on the cupboard, so I took them off. My house has never been perfect but the boiler and inside the cupboard really aint that pretty to look at and it has caused a bone of contention ever since.

Now I am currently in the process of sprucing the house up to sell it and, notwithstanding the fact that I suspect I'll be in the same situation with the boiler in my new house, I want to put some sort of doors back on so it doesn't look a chuff when people come around for a viewing.
I'm happy to buy some more louvre doors for the cupboard or make some fretwork doors (which will be more holes than door,) but I'm worried about 'knowingly contravening the gas regulations' and selling on what would be considered to be an unsafe appliance.

I had the last BG homecare service 2 days ago and the engineer asked if I would be putting doors on the cupboard and I answered 'no.' Regardless, I think that it would be pointless arguing with the engineer and they'd simply condemn the device if I put doors back on.
Funnily enough the boiler has packed in working the day after the service and they'll be leaving me with no heating or hot water for 3 days until they can get another engineer out to me.

Technical literature for the device can be found here http://www.worcester-bosch.co.uk/installer/literature/discontinued-boiler-literature/discontinued-gas-boiler-literature/240-rsf-discontinued-december-1997-literature but I'm pretty sure that current regulation overrides this.
Other than trying to establish exactly what the regulations say in terms of minimum cabinet size and airflow to the device, and then reconciling that against the surface area of ventilation on a fretwork door, I'm at a loss.

It's a clearly ridiculous situation in my opinion if the doors are louvred or fretwork panels but what can I do? I'm not prepared to risk penalty to myself and I'm uncomfortable 'illegally' putting doors back on while someone view the property, knowing full well that they'll be forced to take them off when they have the appliance checked.

What exactly are the regulations? What can I do if I think the engineer is misinterpreting or incorrectly enforcing the rules? Help/advice is very much appreciated.
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Agile

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 16, 2010 12:40 am Reply with quote

BG engineers are told some rather odd things about louvre doors! He has apparently misinterpreted what he was told.

In a bathroom you MUST have doors on a boiler cupboard otherwise its dangerous!

The boiler failing is most likely caused by their service! At this time of year they should come same/next day! Complain if they dont!

Tony
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namsag

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 16, 2010 6:55 am Reply with quote

And Agile must be told strange things also there is no rule at all that says a cupboard Must have a door.
It al depends on distances from the bath/shower with a bit of luck someone will come on later and put the actual drawing with the zones on it
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Agile

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 16, 2010 9:29 am Reply with quote

My understanding is that if in the risky parts of a bathroom the boiler must be contained in a locked or secured enclosure.

Tony


I put my own name. Others feel they must hide theirs!
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ianniann

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 16, 2010 10:11 am Reply with quote

First off, BG are being idiots or crooks here. Blackmail you by claiming powers they don't have to condemn equipment that is merely (at worst) not to current standards, then break your boiler and run off.

There are at least two different issues with boilers in bathrooms. One is related to the flue and I suspect does not apply here.

The other is related to electrical equipment in a bathroom. Your boiler should have an IP rating which determines where it can be placed in a bathroom and whether it needs to be enclosed or not. Where is the boiler in relation to the bath and shower? Heightways and widthways/

BG appear to be getting confused about these two issues. The electrical restrictions would require that the boiler be placed in a a closed cupboard although of course it is your perogative to leave the cupboard door open after they've left icon_lol.gif I don't know whether louvre doors count as enclosed in this situation.
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ianniann

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 16, 2010 10:25 am Reply with quote

Here you: bathroom zones.

For the purposes of the regulations, the cupboard becomes a separate room and so any electrics inside it aren't in the bathroom. Louvre doors appear to be OK since the requirement is to prevent the boiler being touched rather than to prevent water being splashed on the appliance. The door is supposed to be lockable so inquisitive fingers can't just open it.
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ChrisR

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 16, 2010 1:36 pm Reply with quote

ianiann why do you answer questions in fields where you clearly aren't competent?

OP:
A boiler in a bathroom has to comply with electrical regs, some of which has been mentioned but you would do better to ask in the UK Electrics forum. Electricians disagree on what constitutes an adequate cupboard for a particular zone, but one without doors is certainly NOT a cupboard!

The boiler manufacturer has stipulations in the installation instructions to which you linked. This boiler isn't taking any combustion air from the room, but it still requires ventilation, which can be frm the room or from outside, but not both.
The Textbook say you need separate high and low vents, and the MI give minimum sizes. A louvred door would normally exceed those figures so wouldn't seem to be a problem, but BG at one time decided that louvred doors weren't as effective as separate vents. I've not seen a convincing explanation that explained why.
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kevplumb (16 Jul 2010)
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ianniann

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 16, 2010 2:13 pm Reply with quote

Quote:
ianiann why do you answer questions in fields where you clearly aren't competent?

It's just a habit I picked up from the folks on this forum icon_wink.gif Seriously though, if I gave incorrect information then feel free to correct me. Otherwise, tough.
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Streuth

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 17, 2010 4:57 am Reply with quote

Thanks for the replies.

Apologies for my shoddy drawing and photography but hopefully this adequately illustrates where the boiler is in relation to the rest of the bathroom and the exhaust. Dimensions are to the cupboard not the boiler.

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It seems that the wc is excluded from the zone diagram and subsequently my boiler is well outside any zones.
I was forced by BG to have a fused spur installed or they'd refuse to work on the boiler. That was regardless of whether I tripped the RCD and isolated the consumer unit (which amused me.) I complied with their instruction and had an electrician perform the work. I don't recall him mentioning the necessity (or not) for doors on the cupboard.

Unfortunately I'm still no closer to understanding exactly what the regs say and what can I do if I disagree with the engineer. Ultimately, provided they turn up, BG are coming this morning to fix their mistakes from the other day. I was hoping to have some ammo to burn him off with.

I'll ask him under what clause (s) of the gas or electrical regulations does it say that doors on the boiler cupboard are illegal. If he still maintains that doors are not allowed, regardless of whether he cites clauses, I'm going to agree to disagree and ask for an address to enable me to get a definitive answer.

I might try UK Electrics forum and see what they say, thanks for the suggestion.

Kind regards to all.
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Agile

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 17, 2010 10:09 am Reply with quote

In my view the boiler is rather incorrect WITHOUT any doors!

I can see no justification for removing them!

Tony
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Andygasman2010

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 17, 2010 12:28 pm Reply with quote

If it's in a cupboard the fact that the cupboard is in the bathroom is irrelevant so long as you put the doors back on. Louvre doors are perfectly acceptable so long as the total free air is equal to or exceeds the high/low vent size stipulated by Worcester. Also the gaps will need to be between 5 - 10mm.

Even if you left the doors off it sounds to me like it won't be in the wrong zone anyway, you'll have to do some measuring.
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heatingman

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 17, 2010 3:12 pm Reply with quote

stick your doors back on, to keep er-indoors happy.
Quoted from BG TOPS C4-20.
"Louvred Doors.
Where louvred doors are used to provide ventilation to the appliance compartment, the total free area of the slots shall not be less than the sum of the high and low level requirements. The slots formed in the doors should not be less than 5mm, to prevent the build up of dust and lint."

If you get any grief refer them to this document.
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twgas

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 18, 2010 7:38 am Reply with quote

You need 75mm from the front of the boiler to the cupboard door (MIs 4.10), this could be the reason you were told to remove the door.
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