Q&A Facebook page

We are pleased to announce the new interactive NACE Q&A Facebook page which can be accessed here.

You are invited to use this facility for technical, legal, mechanical, fire risk and/or safety, installation or document interpretation advice.

The NACE Facebook page has been designed for the professional and for those who require further technical and mechanical advice.

Please use the new NACE Q&A system. Although not a forum, you are more than welcome to leave constructive comments on the page or email to facebook@nace.org.uk should you feel these are necessary. We will certainly consider all responses carefully.

Samples of recent posts:

NACE 'NAIL' ANOTHER DOMESTIC SMOKE NUISANCE COMPLAINT NACE continue to lead by example in this expert area, having been court appointed single/joint experts in a number of compliance and smoke related cases throughout 2020 as well as officially appointed experts for and on behalf of over 29 borough council environmental health departments and public health lawyers during this period our record of success exceeded expectation resulting in 100% success.The following is one of many references relating to our expertise in the area of controlled service negligence and smoke related dispute. Dear NACE TechnicalI would like to share my experience of having suffered debilitating smoke pollution ingress from a neighbouring heating appliance and the resolution of the problem thanks to the intervention of NACE Ltd - recommended to me by a Cambridge based environmental public law specialist. I live in a smoke control area (SCA) in the North of England, one of my neighbours installed a wood burner producing thick dark clouds of smoke drifting from their chimney directly over my property and those around me. I had been driven to my wits end with the constant invasion of fumes and dirt into my property, affecting both my health and the enjoyment of my home and garden.In this particular case having spoken at length to the Technical team at NACE I fully understood the depth of knowledge and technical competence required to assess the functioning of heating appliances. I therefore realised that the intervention of NACE could be pivotal in achieving a speedy and effective resolution (without the need to initiate lengthy and expensive legal proceedings) of the smoke nuisance which had and was continuing to cause considerable distress to myself and nearby residents. Before the intervention of NACE and their contribution to senior Environmental Health officials, there had been several weeks of correspondence between myself, the City Council and the stove owners. This dialogue had produced some progress, but I felt it was not going to address the problem in its entirety. Fortunately, a reputable Environmental, Planning and Public Law Firm based in Cambridge helpfully referred us to NACE, and specifically their Technical Director. I felt reassured and very grateful that NACE had the time to deal with the issue. It was explained to me that, besides SCA approved fuel and exempt appliance requirements, it is equally important to verify whether stove and fuel are being used correctly, whether the appliance and chimney system have been correctly installed and thus compliant, and that the installation does not represent either a fire or safety risk to the owners or building; last but not least, the installation must take into account multiple factors such as topography, position and weather conditions prevalent in the area in which I live. I really had no idea of the depth of technical competence required to resolve what could have been a lengthy civil dispute. I came to understand that whilst City Councils can easily check whether an exempt appliance is used and they can verify the usage of approved fuel (although to some extent only, as basically they rely on the simple declaration of the users) the Councils’ intervention becomes problematic when it comes down to checking and verifying the correctness of an appliance installation and/or the operation of a chimney/flue system. This difficulty can be due in part to the lack of the required technical expertise in the field, and in part to the limitations posed by the current legislation on a council’s power of action. For example, I have learned that the installation of an appliance must comply with the Building Regulations, but the process relies in most instances on a self-certification scheme, which gives rise to possible incompetent workmanship issues whenever an unsupervised installation takes place, or where the installer has not undertaken highly specialised training. By bringing together the different regulatory strands in their arguments, and thanks to unmatched technical expertise, commitment and frankness, NACE successfully engaged in lengthy talks with the City Council and the owner of the stove. As a result, I am delighted to say that no smoke nuisance has occurred since, and it is very likely that the appliance will no longer be used. NACE performs an important range of activities. I have been impressed by their professionalism and by seeing that their mission is driven by an insight that installation and operation of a domestic burning appliance are very serious and complex matters. This message is very important given the high number of domestic appliances being installed over the last twenty or so years, with Governmental data showing that wood and coal burning stoves are the largest source of internal domestic (harmful) particulate matter emission in the UK. I understand that the anticipated amendment of the Clean Air Act 1993 is expected to address some of these issues by giving more power to Local Authorities to tackle directly smoke emissions from domestic burning in SCAs. However, even then, the application of possible margins of tolerance or the likely difficulty in providing supporting evidence may not guarantee total protection from smoke nuisances occurring through uncaring and incompetent installation work carried out merely on the far too simplistic belief that a few components bolted together represent consumer wellbeing and safety. What is most dreadful of all is that certificates are being issued that clearly do not represent application to or of the building regulations, given these contain numerous waivers the public remain dangerously at risk.David O’Neill BSc MPhil MRSC ...
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NACE LAUNCH NL/921 'FIRE & EXPLOSIVE' CPD TRAININGNACE are pleased to announce the addition of a new CPD training opportunity to compliment our current suite of over 121 administrative, compliance, regulatory, legal, technical and business related courses, the NL/921 Investigators 'Fire & Explosion' causation, effect and inspection interpretation CPD course is available from the 1st February this year.The NL/921 represents technical excellence in such areas as; installer negligence, regulatory non-compliance, regulatory contravention and dangerous workmanship surrounding domestic and/or commercial combustion appliance as well as controlled service installation claim, failure and/or contravention that may have led to the occurrence of fire related loss or injury, the fire investigative industry knows little if anything surrounding controlled appliances or controlled service compliance or can they competently interpret the physical element as we well know.In an industry where the issuing of DIY surveys and armchair reporting continues unabated and without guidance or legislation protecting the consumer the NL/921 will assist those wishing to aspire to investigator status with the tools to interpret incompetent and/or negligent workmanship, installation related defects, installer related fire damage, loss and/or injury claim and to properly and confidently provide visual, oral and written evidence to CPR35 standard when dealing with any reporting function.The NL/921 clearly raising standards far beyond anything currently available, this course will provide learning in; expert pre and post fire analyses, defective workmanship and installation, defect claim interpretation and insurer loss adjustment, successful applicants will benefit considerably from this course when retained to provide expert scrutiny. The NACE/LSTA JV will make every effort to support, educate, mentor and market such individuals to local authorities and to related professional organisations as well as the law society so that such expertise is both recognised and properly appreciated. Interested parties should apply for further information to; technical@nace.org.uk ...
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WARNING NOTICES - GET THEM WRONG AT YOUR PERIL!Nace, appointed by Darlington County Court in the role of single/joint expert on a 'Party Wall' dispute surrounding dangerously incompetent interpretation of a supposed chimney and flueing issue witnessed this case being thrown out of court before a hearing could be attended by both parties, the upshot being that the complainant could not support the summons with sufficient evidence, the defendant the subject of incompetent as well as dangerously ill advised opinion.The training that Gas Safe installers receive to our knowledge does not encompass lengthy or in depth training within the fields of; chimney and/or flue system mechanics, principals or design, therefore, when issuing a warning notice on the basis of a) Spillage/smoke from a pellet and b) Smoke from a pellet allegedly exiting from two chimney terminals at the same time it would not be a surprise therefore as a landlord to be issued with a warning notice if of course the information within a tick box document had been correct.In this instance it was not. The gas appliance, an open DFE housed in a metal box with a 9" x 6" flue outlet above had been installed to an existing fireplace opening and then room sealed. The spillage referred to caused by a concrete lintel (see evidence) virtually blocking the flue outlet therefore the result of the spillage! Had the installer bothered to remove the coal effect briquettes and look upward he may have noticed the evident causation, however, this was a quantum leap to far.Furthermore, after lengthy random tests it was established that the installer had mistaken smoke emanating from our clients chimney terminal flowing across the neighbouring terminal assuming what he saw was leakage from two terminals at the same time.. Had the gas installer used coloured smoke pellets and then undertaken random evaluations instead of a single grey smoke pellet test against a very grey sky he may have concluded as we did that there wasn't a breach at all between the flues on the party wall, what he experienced was nothing more than wind direction carrying elements of smoke across an adjacent terminal.The Landlord, having been handed a warning notice on the basis of a) and b) above condemning the lounge flue shaft without any competent interpretation, guidance or help wrongly assumed damage had been done to his property by his neighbour who had recently installed a stove into their fireplace. (this could not be proven) issued a threatening letter that resulted in a similar thoughtless response escalating to the issue of a summons all brought about by incompetence and dangerously inept interpretation of a controlled service.NACE have taken this up with the 'Gas Technical Standards & Incident Manager' and the 'Gas Safe Register'. (Capita)Where day to day work activity comes into contact with chimneys and flues ( controlled services) it is essential, be it a few days that CPD in this specific area of expertise is accepted as a nominal element of any training exercise, NACE already have these CPD's in place for gas technicians. The complex and often litigious nature of consumer complaint is not merely based upon poor workmanship and/or incompetence, dangerous self-opinion leading to a 'Swashbuckling' approach to consumer safety resulting in the issue of warning notices in lieu of technically competent advice and guidance may provide a similar route to catastrophe. Warning notices as we have pointed out are worthless unless the person issuing them sets out remedial methods of correction, the issuing of a warning notice will not therefore waiver personal liability of the issuer merely by the passing of a piece of paper from one person to another in particular, where the circumstances are potentially life changing leaving a consumer to determine what action to take when informed of a defect via a warning notice is morally wrong and a failure to demonstrate due diligence. ...
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From Will TaylorDear NACE TechnicalWould NACE please offer an expert opinion please on the 'Recoheat' product, I’m fuming over its claims and think it’s a very dangerous product.Thanks Will ...
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NACE FORMALLY RECOGNISES 'DETECTAGAS'®COMPETENT TESTING OF DOMESTIC CO ALARMSNACE and member Gas Safe Europe are to provide a joint training CPD on competent CO alarm audit testing, positioning, understanding the requirements of BSEN50291/50292 and methods of recording results for use in any CPR35 related scenorio.Recognition of competence in an area no one appears to be able to rise above beyond the copying of others is now at a critical stage, whilst there is a plethora of CO related guidance and information there remains a great deal of ignorance surrounding CO and how this toxic material ingresses into domestic & commercial dwellings.Therefore the urgency to instruct those who think liability ends when these alarms are fitted to gain access to higher learning leading to competent status recognition.There is a continual refusal to acknowledge that 'button' pushing is not a competent method of confirming any alarm will increase 'life expectancy' Detectagas® has been recognised as a tested method of confirming that CO sensors actually work!! therefore competent testing and maintenance can be achieved if we think laterally and employ logical common sense.CO-CPD supported with guidance and help for competent technicians will open up considerable opportunities at consumer level, where it matters most!!NACE with the full support of Gas Safe Europe will press ahead with a joint statement to housing authorities and to our colleagues within Environmental Health across the UK that we are in a position to test, audit and provide necessary methods of education with regard to the tracking and tracing of CO whilst keeping the consumer safe in their own home and for the competent maintenance of these alarms. Only NACE members will have access to the 'Detectagas'® product and supporting CO-CPD training which can be delivered via Zoom media. ...
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