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smoke test fail

Discussion in 'Building' started by skynet, 4 Nov 2013.

  1. skynet

    skynet

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    I'll try to make this quick.
    Have a gas fire that was never used in a new house.

    Recently got it checked out by a gas professional and it failed the smoke test.
    Flue appears to be a constructed of precast concrete blocks all the way up to the loft and then onwards as an angled steel tube up to a ridge vent
    No blockages or obvious leaks were found and he cant explain it other than it might just be too long a run and it might be costly to find and fix the cause.
    The upshot is that unfortunately the fire failed to be certified.
    To be honest its no big deal to me that i cant use it but i plan to sell the property within the next year and so I would have to declare this (I dont fancy putting anyones life at risk).
    What would you do?
    I was thinking I could put a wood burner stove into the fireplace.
    Alternatively if i rip the fire out, decomission the flue somehow and put e.g. an electric fire in do i have to declare the certification failure when selling the property?
     
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  3. PrenticeBoyofDerry

    PrenticeBoyofDerry

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    Did the engineer say the reason behind the problem? One common cause is downdraft, what type of environment is the chimney stack in?
    Are you in a built up area or are there tall trees in this location?
    This can effect the draw on the chimney.
     
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  4. Alastairreid

    Alastairreid

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    Sounds like the chimney stack has been removed below the roofline into the attic.

    From the attic to the gas ridge terminal done in twinwall!

    What type of appliance do you have? If its an inset real flame fire you will have to increase the bore of the twinwall from the chimney stub through the roof (gas vent terminals are not adequate).

    I doubt the flue through the attic would be suitable for a solid fuel burner either.

    Your gas bloke should know this.
     
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  5. Used to a common installation - although the flue within the attic space was usually asbestos cement with a fibre gasket where it joined the precast flue.

    I'd be very surprised if the precast flue could handle a woodburner.

    It might be worth taking a look at the flue terminal (ridge tile) to see if it's been blocked - the outlets were small to start with.

    If you decide to dispense with the gas fire make sure that the flue is sealed up at both the top and bottom - it makes a perfect conduit for a house-fire to jump from the ground floor to the roofspace.

    If the roofspace flue is asbestos cement then it can be removed providing care is taken - especially with the gasket - take a look at the HSE website for guidance.

    We usually fill both the top and bottom of the pre-cast flue with expanding intumescent foam to seal it completely.

    If it's all removed and gas supply capped (GasSafe engineer) then no need to declare when you come to sell.[/quote]
     
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  7. skynet

    skynet

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    Thanks for all the replies.
    So its a built up area but no trees and very windy normally.
    Basically he used a long match thing to do a small test first and it failed.
    He confirmed there was no blockage and couldn't see any obvious reason for the fail and just put it down to one of those things.

    For a wood burner i wasnt thinking of reusing the current flue, more i was thinking of just telling whoever would install it to just knock through the old flue or whatever is necessary.

    Really just wanting to know what any of you would do in my situation considering i plan to sell soon.
     
  8. pred

    pred

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    Personally, my first response would be to go outside and check the roof, if there is half a dozen reindeer harnessed to a sledge waiting patently for their owner to return I think I know what your problem might be.

    I think this might be the opportune moment to wish all on DIYnot a "Merry Christmas"
     
  9. zarrahtracey

    zarrahtracey

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    It a good concern not to put someone's life at risk. First thing is to look for places where you can fix or buy a new smoke detector; better test that out as well. I think that you should have this fixed before you sell your home.
     
  10. skynet

    skynet

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    I knew this was the right place to post...got the ladder out, and would you believe it...there was Rudolph and a questionable looking pile of something on my flue vent. Who would have thought eh!
     
  11. DIYnot Local

    DIYnot Local

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