MAY / JUNE 2020
THE RIGHT TRACKS
How our industry has contributed to the huge Crossrail project
Working together with insurers to protect traders and consumers
Expert advice on managing legionella risk in installations
THE SOCIAL DISTANCING NETWORK THE MAGAZINE FOR THE CHARTERED INSTITUTE OF PLUMBING AND HEATING ENGINEERING
Working together to help end the crisis
Welcome This isn’t the edition we had been planning. Like everyone else, events have overtaken us and we are focusing on what we can do to help you. We’re keeping you informed on what the CIPHE is doing to help members, sharing advice and looking to the future. There have been some positives: although the solution wasn’t perfect, the plight of self-employed workers eventually got on the agenda and PPE is a term now familiar to all. People are aware how important small businesses are. The government has pumped money into the economy, giving some security to major infrastructure projects and the CIPHE will continue to make the case that individuals required to be in the workforce are supported. It might seem far-fetched but maybe a kinder, safer life might be coming our way.
22 THE FIX
How the industry has been affected by the pandemic – and what the future may hold
Managing legionella risk 25 Q&A CPD questions to bolster your skills 26 Protecting systems Keeping heating systems running well
16 Going underground
30 Your membership
Find out about the complex engineering challenges behind the Crossrail project
The importance of dealing with grievances in a professional manner
20 Risky business
Working with the insurance industry to reduce claims for water damage
REGULARS 5 From the CEO
Where to turn to for help when financial problems affect your mental health
34 Q&A: Jimmy Hendry Working in the Antarctic and teaching the plumbers of the future
Kevin Wellman discusses the critical role of CIPHE members in times of crisis
CHRIS SMITH Editor pandhengineering@ jamespembrokemedia.co.uk
Editor Chris Smith Project manager Lizzie Hufton Head of design Simon Goddard Publisher James Houston Published by James Pembroke Media, 90 Walcot Street, Bath BA1 5BG Tel 01225 337777 Advertising sales executive Harvey Falshaw, email@example.com Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering (CIPHE) 64 Station Lane, Hornchurch, Essex RM12 6NB Tel 01708 472791
Visit pandhengineering. co.uk for regular updates and archived features
ON THE COVER How our industry is responding to the coronavirus pandemic Page 12
6 Frontline The fallout from COVID-19, legal rulings, guidance updates and more
Illustration: Adam Gale
Membership Founded in 1906, the Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering (CIPHE) is the professional body for the UK plumbing and heating industry. Membership is made up of consultants, specifiers, designers, public health engineers, lecturers, trainers, trainees and practitioners. The CIPHE has a membership of 7,500, including over 150 manufacturers and distributors. The majority of members live in the UK, although over 1,000 are residents in Hong Kong. The CIPHE is a member of the Construction Industry Council and a licensed member of the Engineering Council.
Subscriptions P&H Engineering is the magazine for the Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering, containing technical articles, latest industry news and environmental and educational updates.
It is published six times a year and sent free to members. Annual subscription for non-member £120 Annual subscription for overseas non-member £145 To join CIPHE, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Copyright notice and disclaimer P&H Engineering is published bi-monthly by the Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering. All material is copyright of the Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering and may not be reproduced without written permission. The publishers do not accept responsibility for errors or omissions. The views expressed in the magazine are not necessarily those of the Institute and publication of an advertisement or article does not necessarily mean the Institute endorses those products, materials or techniques.
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FROM THE CEO
Our members are critical workers in times of crisis
KEVIN WELLMAN Chief executive officer email@example.com
We’ve been actively engaged with government throughout the COVID-19 crisis and will ensure that continues
Stay in touch Follow our updates on COVID-19 at www.ciphe. org.uk/newsroom/ coronavirus/
GET INVOLVED We’re campaigning for better safety standards and the more people involved, the stronger the case we have. We’d love for you to get involved. If you’d like to help, contact our membership director Tim Sainty by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
he impact of COVID-19 has been devastating and I would firstly like to offer my deepest condolences to all those who have lost family or friends throughout the crisis we continue to endure. Whilst the scale has been daunting, I am humbled and heartened in equal measure by the everyday acts of courage and humanity which remind us that better days lie ahead. During the last few weeks, we have understandably received many enquiries from members and I am proud of the support the head office team has provided. Now is not the time for recriminations other than saying I am sure that the government has learned a great deal from COVID-19 and if (probably when) we face another pandemic many things will be dealt with differently. I commend those members who carried on working and supporting customers, especially the vulnerable, during their emergencies. There was no doubt to me that plumbing and heating engineers are critical workers in times of crisis: hopefully next time there will be greater recognition of this from the outset. We have been actively engaged with government through our relationship with the Construction Industry Council (CIC) and I am pleased that many of our recommendations have been taken on board during CIC’s regular briefings with BEIS. We know that many of our members need clarity on a route back to work and we have advised on the steps to make this happen. The topic of personal protective equipment is a live one and its availability must be a crucial part of how plumbing and heating services are delivered in future. In addition
to continuing our work with the CIC, we had discussions with insurance underwriters. A critical issue for us is the water-related issues associated with buildings being unexpectedly unoccupied for such long periods of time, resulting in stagnant water throughout the properties. I also wait with bated breath to see if a future legacy of the coronavirus will be water shortages. From the outset it was clear how important it was to wash your hands thoroughly which is essential and is an early step in promoting the fact that ‘Prevention is better than cure’. It reminds us once again that water is a precious resource and those responsible for its safe provision and services inside buildings should be recognised for the vital role they perform as custodians of public health. In reflecting back to the World Plumbing Conference in September last year it seems that those who suggested that over the years plumbers have saved as many lives as doctors could have a point! To all of our members, I want to assure you that the CIPHE will be here for you. I know that this has been a difficult time for many of you for a wide range of reasons and it is at times like this that membership must come into its own. Meanwhile, our work in promoting safe plumbing and heating for public benefit continues; please encourage others to join our mission.
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KEEP INFORMED Read all the latest news, updates, and member benefits Facebook/CIPHE twitter.com/CIPHE
All that’s happening in plumbing and heating
SAFETY AND SUPPORT VITAL TO LOCKDOWN EXIT, MINISTERS TOLD
Got a news story?
INDUSTRY GOES DIGITAL TO STAY IN BUSINESS
Get in touch with editor Chris Smith using the email address on p3
Plumbers and suppliers across the country have been using their downtime to help customers and promote their businesses online. The lockdown led to traders making the most of the web and Twitter to keep in contact with customers to reassure them they were continuing to operate. Among them was Leeds plumber Allen Hart who posted a series of videos to talk customers through quoting for a job, combi boilers and water leaks. He said: “I’m at home keeping the family safe. What I thought I’d do is give some advice and tips to try and help others as much as possible.” The Tradie Hub took to social media to remind installers to ensure they wear protective equipment during customer visits. It tweeted: “Working and not wearing PPE WHY?? If you have to work do it safely not just for you but your customers!”
CIPHE and industry bodies urge the government to plan carefully to protect public health and long-term business security
he CIPHE has urged the government to ensure plans for water safety and industry support are in place for the exit from the COVID-19 lockdown. Ministers were warned outbreaks of Legionnaires’ disease could follow if mothballed buildings are not serviced before being brought back into use adding to pressure on fatigued NHS staff. Kevin Wellman, CIPHE chief executive officer, said: “I have reiterated the need for water safety plans to be made a requirement on all non-residential buildings. Whilst I hope my concerns don’t come to fruition, I do worry that there will be in an increase in water-related problems such as Legionnaires’ disease in the coming weeks and months.” The Institute has also used its membership of the Construction
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Industry Council to lobby for further help for firms. Treasury ministers and officials at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy have been warned contractors and their supply chain are most at risk in the period immediately following a full return to work due to long payment terms. Chief executive officer of the Construction Industry Council, Graham Watts said: “In the long term, the country is going to have to make good the government borrowing to overcome the coronavirus pandemic, but this could take a generation. In the meantime, the important thing is to make quick interventions now.” Read more about the CIPHE’s work to support members during the coronavirus outbreak on page 12
VAILLANT CUTS COSTS FOR NHS STAFF Boiler manufacturer Vaillant is offering free emergency repair work to NHS staff. The firm announced it had set up a dedicated phone line to enable health workers to get help until the end of June with work costing up to £500. To qualify, they will need their NHS number and proof of address. Vaillant said: “The work itself will be carried out at the residence of the NHS staff member only and ID will need to be shown to the engineer upon arrival to the property.” To claim, call: 0330 102 8571
BUSINESS AS UNUSUAL How our industry is operating during the COVID-19 pandemic – and how businesses might recover in future Page 12
INDUSTRY TAKES TO TWITTER DURING LOCKDOWN
Lighthouse Club in £1m fundraising plea A CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY charity has appealed for £1m after its fundraising programme had to be scrapped because of the coronavirus outbreak. The Lighthouse Club, which provides mental health and financial support to workers and their families, made an emergency appeal after calling off all its events including an annual dinner, a boxing night and a sponsored bike ride. It added to pressure caused by the increase in requests for hardship funds from sole traders who have lost their jobs due to the virus. The charity’s helpline has already seen a 25% increase in calls and is supporting one family of a man who
committed suicide over debt fears. Lighthouse Club, which is partnering P&H Engineering’s Under Pressure mental health campaign, said money raised for its crisis fund would go directly to those in need. Chief executive officer Bill Hill said: “Many of the calls received are from self-employed tradesmen or workers on zero-hour contracts who cope from week to week. This is a difficult time for everyone, but the charity hopes that they can count on the industry’s generosity.” To help, go to: www.lighthouseclub. org.uk. If you are experiencing suicidal thoughts, phone Samaritans on 116 123
Social media became the safest way to contact people as the COVID-19 virus took hold
The Construction Industry Council is running webinars to share its latest updates: @CICtweet
CIC is launching a #webinar series on #Construction in the Age of #Coronavirus. Regulator Ofwat offered help to customers with money worries: @WaterUK
TRAINING EVENTS CANCELLED BY VIRUS OUTBREAK TRAINING EVENTS ACROSS the country,
including CIPHE events, have been postponed because of COVID-19. A water regulations training seminar in Northern Ireland organised by the CIPHE and WaterSafe for the Scottish and Northern Ireland Plumbing Employers’ Federation, which was due to take place on 22 April, was
among the events to be delayed. The event will be rescheduled for later in the year. WaterSafe said the free training was still a priority: “Membership of the CIPHE and a water fittings regulations certificate will allow eligible plumbing businesses to sign up to WaterSafe, the national register of approved plumbers, at no extra cost.”
Water firm launches awareness campaign THAMES WATER HAS launched a campaign to raise awareness of its engineering work during the COVID-19 outbreak. The firm told customers that they would continue to see the company’s engineers working in their communities to maintain essential water and wastewater services.
Karl Simons, Thames Water’s chief health, safety and wellbeing officer, said: “Continuing to provide clean water for handwashing and hygiene and taking away wastewater is vital for public health, and I’d like to reassure all of our customers that we’ve got robust plans in place to ensure we can continue to deliver these critical services.” Find out more: thameswater.co.uk/ help-and-advice/coronavirus
Water companies are encouraging households suffering from immediate or short-term issues with paying their #bills to get in contact so they can receive help. Ideal Boilers announced it was closing up except for essential services: @IdealBoilers
Important Notice; Due to the recent government announcement, we have made the decision to close the business apart from essential services until further notice. We are here to support you in any way we can. CIPHE member Mark Grieves urged colleagues who had downed tools to look out for vulnerable people: @Plymouthgas
If you think you have nothing to do, ask your neighbours if they need anything! #shoppinglist
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Find out more Read more news and advice from the CIPHE at www.ciphe.org.uk/ newsroom
Sprinklers to become mandatory Event
SET THE DATE FOR AGM THE CIPHE’s 2020 Annual General Meeting is still set to take place on Friday 19 June. However, it is now going to be held digitally and registration will be open to all members. Membership director, Tim Sainty, said: “The COVID-19 pandemic has made us rethink how we will deliver our Annual General Meeting and, although a new challenge, this is a great opportunity to open the event to those who couldn’t travel to London on the day.” Look out for event registration details or register your intention to participate by emailing Lesley Church (email@example.com) or by telephone 01708 463115.
CALVERT WINS REGIONAL INSTALLER CARDIGAN PLUMBER Steven Calvert is celebrating after taking one of the top spots in the UK’s biggest plumbing competition. He was the Wales and Northern Ireland regional winner of the national Heating Installer awards. He said: “We enter every year; we like to push ourselves and go out there and compete against the best in the country.”
UK LAUNCH FOR UNICO US MANUFACTURER UNICO Systems has launched its duct heating, cooling and ventilation range in the UK. The decision to start selling in the UK with distributor Bell Plumbing Supplies has been prompted by the recent run of record-breaking hot summers. The system provides both heating and cooling and is fully compatible with existing boiler systems, underfloor heating and heat pumps. For more information visit:
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SPRINKLER SYSTEMS will be mandatory in tall buildings as part of a massive overhaul of building regulations. All new buildings more than 11 metres tall will have sprinklers fitted and clear emergency signage under new building rules announced in Approved Document B by the government in response to the Building a Safer Future Consultation. It also continues the commitment to implement in full the recommendations from the Hackett review into the Grenfell Tower fire. Housing secretary Robert Jenrick said: “The government is bringing about the biggest change in building safety for a generation.” The change on sprinklers will bring Northern Ireland and England in line with legislation in Scotland and Wales.
The new national Building Safety Regulator will be established in legislation as part of the Building Safety Bill in the next Parliamentary session. It is already being run in shadow form by the Health and Safety Executive. The announcement follows months of lobbying by the Construction Industry Council which is supported by the CIPHE. Further changes to the legislation could be made as more government research emerges. Officials are working with the National Fire Chiefs Council on new fire alert technology. Jerry Whiteley, the CIPHE’s technical manager, said: “This is overdue and very welcome but there is a long way to go – especially in the current climate. The government may come under pressure to delay this but we hope they don’t.”
UN DELAYS GLASGOW SUMMIT THE CRITICAL UN climate change conference that would have been hosted by the UK has been delayed until next year. The CIPHE had been set to join industry groups, politicians and climate change activists at the COP26 event that would have agreed emissions targets and priorities including alternative heating sources. A new date has yet to be agreed.
LINE OF DUTY How plumbing and heating engineering have contributed to the amazing Crossrail project Page 16
Four water firms challenge Ofwat FOUR WATER FIRMS have appealed to the competition watchdog over their pricing plans. Anglian Water, Bristol Water, Northumbrian Water and Yorkshire Water all appealed to the Competition and Markets Authority over the regulator’s price review of all 17 suppliers. Ofwat’s review sets the outcomes water companies should deliver for customers and the environment, and the price that customers will pay over the next five years. The regulator wants £13bn to be dedicated to improving services, resilience, and the environment. The price review also allows £1bn of investment that wasn’t requested by
HOTEL FINED £220K FOR SAFETY BREACHES THE OWNERS of a hotel have been fined more than £220,000 after being found guilty of eight charges of health and safety breaches. A court heard the owners of Stoke Rochford Hall Hotel, near Grantham, had committed serious offences including failing to protect guests from electrocution in a bathroom and failing to prevent the risk of legionella. The business admitted the breaches at Lincoln Magistrates Court which also included failing to report an accident. The prosecution had been taken by South Kesteven District Council which had previously issued enforcement notices after a visit in 2017. SKDC Cabinet Member for Commercial and Operations Councillor Dr Peter Moseley, said: “The level of fines imposed shows how serious this case was. It sends a clear message to other businesses about the importance of following health and safety regulations.”
the companies to address long-term challenges. The four firms want customers to pay more or receive a lower standard of service but Ofwat said their position is unjustified. The battle has been going on since 2015 and the regulator is confident about the appeal. Rachel Fletcher, Ofwat chief executive officer, said: “After extensive and detailed analysis in the price review, four companies have refused to accept our view on what customers should pay and the standards they should expect over the next five years. And so we welcome the opportunity for the CMA, with its independent expertise, to settle the matter once and for all.”
POLYPIPE MD JOINS EXPERT PANEL POLYPIPE’S LEAD FOR CIVILS has joined a top industry panel. Steve Durdant-Hollamby, managing director for Polypipe Civils and Green Urbanisation has joined the Builders Merchant Building Index (BMBI) Expert Panel. He said: “With climate change and the environment high on the agenda, it is an ideal time for Polypipe to join the BMBI Expert Panel. It is timely with our focus on green urbanisation and gives us a strong platform to comment on wider industry issues as well as sector specific developments such as the growth in sustainable water management. I am looking forward to being involved.”
SHAPE THE FUTURE BUSINESS MAY BE SLOW but that gives you time to make sure your voice is heard in big government decisions coming soon. In May, there are four deadlines to reply to government consultations on issues that will directly impact on your business. The Contracts for Difference scheme, which agrees prices for sustainably-produced electricity, is up for renewal and views must be in by 22 May. The introduction of E10 petrol, a biofuel that includes 10% ethanol, is part of efforts to cut vehicle emissions and the government wants to hear from businesses by 3 May about the potential impact. The government is also consulting on its deadline for ending the production of petrol and diesel vehicles. It closes on 29 May. The Scottish government is also calling for evidence on its sustainability plans. It has set up the Just Transition Commission which is looking at affordable actions that can help reduce emissions. The deadline is 28 May. CIPHE chief executive officer Kevin Wellman said: “We liaise with government as part of our work but the more voices we have, the stronger our case. I encourage everyone to get involved.” Find out more and take part by going to: www.gov.uk/ government/consultations
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GUIDANCE UPDATE Find out more You can find more regulation updates at www.pandhengineering. co.uk
WATER REGULATIONS ADVISORY SCHEME ROLLS OUT NEW TESTING FOR RPZ VALVES TESTERS FOR REDUCED pressure zone valves will need to renew their training, the water regulator has warned. Although delays are now likely due to the coronavirus outbreak, the Water Regulations Advisory Scheme (WRAS) has updated the requirements for installation, commissioning and compliance testing of Type BA devices (RPZ valves). The regulations apply to any water fitting installed or used, or to be installed or used, in premises to which water is or is to be supplied by a water undertaker. The water industry, through WRAS, will be providing free training for those who have already successfully completed an existing water industry recognised RPZ tester course. This conversion training will be available until the end of November 2020. WRAS said: “There will be a 12-month transition period, running until 7 January 2021, to enable existing RPZ testers, users and operators to understand the new requirement.”
Gas Safe issues alert on Intergas boilers GAS SAFE REGISTER has warned installers about a safety concern on two boilers over a faulty front plate seal. Two Intergas models, the Combi Compact HRE 36/40 and HRE 40SB, need to have the front seal replaced, according to the manufacturer which raised the issue with the regulator. The integrity of the seal, which is red in colour, is uncertain and must be replaced with a black one with the serial number 620274.
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Gas Safe Register said: “For safety reasons, all boilers produced within serial batch numbers 1210g09094 to 1611e17513 must be upgraded with a new Viton black seal.” The serial number can be found on the underside of the boiler. To find out more contact: service@ intergas-heating.co.uk or call 01527 888000 www.gassaferegister. co.uk/media/2834/sa-029intergas-hre-36-40-hre40-sb-front-plate-sealupgrade.pdf
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To find out more visit: https://www.wras.co.uk/ plumbing_professionals/rpz_testers/issue-2-update/
HSE UPDATES MENTAL HEALTH ADVICE FOR LONE WORKERS BETTER SAFEGUARDS to keep lone workers healthy have been unveiled by the safety watchdog. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has updated its advice for companies to ensure isolated workers are protected. The new guidance sets out more information on how managers should keep in touch with lone workers. It also highlights the impact lone working can have on stress, mental health and wellbeing. The HSE said: “Lone workers face the same hazards at work as anyone else, but there is a greater risk of these hazards causing harm as they may not have anyone to help or support them if things go wrong. As an employer, you should provide training, monitoring and support for lone workers.” You can find the new guidance at: https://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/indg73.htm
Industry survey reveals true cost of lockdown
CIPHE ISSUES POST-LOCKDOWN LEGIONELLA ADVICE The nationwide lockdown is costing the industry millions
THE LOCKDOWN IS costing the plumbing and heating industry £47m a day, according to research supported by the CIPHE. An online survey of installers found plumbing and heating work, including jobs that could be carried out within government guidelines, was down by 13%. The findings, based on 1,115 responses during April, also revealed serious concerns over the finances of firms despite the government’s support schemes. Half of the sector felt the financial measures don’t go far enough. Around 19,000 businesses believe they could ‘fall between the cracks’ and will not benefit under current aid measures at all. More than a third (37%) admitted they were worried about going out of business.
The findings came as the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy announced more measures to help firms affected by the outbreak including a business support helpline. A spokesman for Eureka Research, which conducted the survey, said: “It’s apparent to us how diligently the trade has completed the interviews, with many taking the time to provide additional detailed feedback. It puts us all in an unrivalled position to tell the story from the point of view of the businesses who are figuring out a way through the crisis.” Business support helpline: 0300 456 3565 For more on the CIPHE response, see our cover story, page 12
PANIC BUYERS BLOCK LONDON SEWER PEOPLE FORCED TO stay at home have been clogging up sewers with unflushable items, Thames Water has revealed. The capital’s water firm revealed the number of callouts for blockages have rocketed 8% due to the lockdown. The shortage of toilet paper had led to some people resorting to newspaper and other products increasing the number of blockages. In one case, teams removed a 40kg bundle, the size of a large dog, from a pipe in Maidenhead, Berkshire made up of wet wipes and sanitary products which had combined with a higher amount of cooking grease caused by more people eating at home. A Thames Water spokesman said:
Blockages like this take at least two hours to clear
“Engineers are clearing such blockages at least once a week, with each operation taking at least two hours and using up valuable repair time.”
GUIDANCE TO HELP businesses avoid outbreaks of legionella after the lockdown has been shared with CIPHE members. The advice, from the Institute’s technical team, sets out the steps facilities managers will need to follow as mothballed buildings such as offices, gyms and schools are brought back into use after the COVID-19 outbreak. Legionella bacteria develops in stagnant water that remains at room temperature and the lockdown has provided ideal conditions for it to flourish. Air conditioning systems, showers and hot water taps cause its spread as vapour which could then be breathed in. The advice details what a designated competent person should do to ensure the integrity of the plumbing in line with a Water Safety (Management) Plan, including pressure testing of all systems. It is also possible that water left sitting for long periods of time within a building’s water system could contain excessive amounts of heavy metals. Engineers are advised to follow regulation PD 855468:2015 on domestic use in buildings. CIPHE chief executive officer Kevin Wellman said: “As COVID-19 alert levels drop, it is important to ensure the safety of building water systems before occupancy resumes.” Find the advice at www. ciphe.org.uk/newsroom/ coronavirus/water-systemspost-covid19/
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Illustrations: Adam Gale
FEATURE / COVID-19
CIPHE members can continue helping customers with emergencies as long as safety measures are followed
THE SOCIAL DISTANCING NETWORK The coronavirus pandemic has brought the country to a standstill. The CIPHE has been helping members and working with the government throughout the crisis
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s well as the huge cost to health and human lives, the ongoing coronavirus pandemic is having a devastating effect on the industry. The situation turned critical within days of the pandemic being declared on 14 March. Just-in-time supply lines in the Far East ran dry. The sudden ending of short-term contracts hit the lowest paid hardest. Site safety became a reputational issue for employers. Many firms quickly shut down. According to data service IHS Markit, the Purchasing Managers’ Index, which is the construction industry benchmark, dropped to 39.3 – its lowest reading for a decade.
At the beginning of April, the Scottish government ordered a halt to work on 12 site types deemed non-essential including housing and civic buildings. In England, site work has been allowed as long as people stayed two metres apart – but this has been criticised by unions and some workers. It has left a number of people having to choose between their health and income. There have also been safety questions on PPE and legal issues such as liability if a member passed the virus on. Reacting to all this has been the CIPHE team, which has been working round the clock to share information, answer queries from members, lobby the
COVID-19 / FEATURE
Parts of the group are supporting the National Health Service in very specific roles government and advise civil servants. The response was complicated by rapidly changing government advice on key issues such as site working, travel and the critical financial support for firms and self-employed workers. CIPHE chief executive officer Kevin Wellman says: “We have been working extensively to support our members on two main fronts. To ensure that government recognises the vital services members of the plumbing and heating industry often provide and to make clear to government the immediate impact on the availability of emergency services and the long-term damage to public safety without a proposal of support for the self-employed.” The CIPHE has also been trying to help out homeowners who are in an emergency. Membership director Tim Sainty shared on social media: “We are doing something we wouldn’t ever usually contemplate… advice for consumers troubleshooting issues where they cannot get the services of a professional due to lockdown/ isolation issues. Again, with the safety of members and consumers at the heart of it.”
Sharpening focus With their emergency status clear, many installers have focused on jobs where hygiene or health would be affected. The biggest source of calls was from customers suddenly at home all day, whose systems were struggling to cope with the increased demand. For manufacturers and suppliers there were difficult choices between staff safety and protecting their businesses. Vaillant shows just how difficult
the decisions have been: “As a service provider, we are committed to providing heating and hot water to all of our customers. However, the safety of our employees, customers and communities is our number one priority. “Since 23 March, we are no longer attending routine service appointments and are only reacting to issues with appliances which could result in no heating or hot water. Before entering any property, we carry out three separate risk assessments: two checks prior to the appointment, and one when the engineer arrives on site. If they feel there is any risk of COVID-19, they have the right to cancel the job and leave the property immediately.” Some workers in the industry have been using the down-time to catch up on their CPD through online training. Manufacturers have reported an increase in sign-ups. An industry that uses problem solving every day soon turned to helping the NHS. Polypipe has switched part of its manufacturing capacity: “Parts of the group are supporting the National Health Service in very specific roles in increasing capabilities to cope with the inevitable increase in COVID-19 patients. Our Nuaire business is manufacturing ventilation for the Royal Marsden Hospital and is receiving urgent enquiries from many other NHS sites for this as well as other essential projects. Our Building Products business has been requested to manufacture special pipe for emergency medical use.” Firms have been donating spare PPE to NHS staff to help make up for shortages. Among them is plumbers’ merchants MP Moran and Sons in London who joined an improvised group of firms that collected donations from around the industry. Bart Murphy, operations director at MP Morans, explains why: “I received a call from a district nurse in Northwood who was in tears after losing a 28-year-old nursing colleague to coronavirus.” “They have been trying to get missing items of PPE to protect them for weeks
SURVEY HIGHLIGHTS FINANCIAL WORRIES Members of the CIPHE have helped to give a picture of how the industry is coping with the coronavirus pandemic and lockdown, by taking part in a survey supported by the Institute and other industry bodies. The Eureka Research survey had 1,115 responses from those working in the sector throughout April, and found real concerns over finances. The majority of businesses are most worried about immediate sources of cashflow and being able to pay themselves and staff in the short term. It said: “Larger businesses, in particular, are worried about being paid for work already completed and this could act as a barrier when restrictions are eased. Two thirds of operating businesses are concerned about getting hold of the materials and products they need for jobs.” Find out more about dealing with debt and financial worries on p33
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FEATURE / COVID-19 Did you know? The CLC and the CIPHE are working to protect a sector that represents of 10% of employment
This is a difficult time for apprentices, employers and providers of apprenticeship training and today I handed them some of the very products they needed, and we are working on more.” Other firms, such as Worcester Bosch, kept some production going to ensure parts and units are available for urgent repairs.
Adapting to change The specialist parts of the sector have also adapted to the new normal. With lower overheads and careful planning, most have enough work to see them through. Rob Berridge, who runs his own heating design consultancy, has not seen a significant drop-off in work but warns big firms must pay invoices to keep the sector going. He says: “Things are kind of okay. One of the industry’s biggest problems is payment. Accounting departments have shut down so accounts are not being settled. That can only cause issues; especially for those with staff. If you’ve furloughed your staff you still have to pay them.” He says the sector was caught out: “We work in an industry that has to deal with installations that are poorly maintained and companies that have a lack of continuity and planning.” For Russell Armstrong, managing director of RA Tech which makes and sells the Hotun tundish, the COVID-19 outbreak has meant shelving a product launch.
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The CIPHE and its members are working together to adapt to rapidly changing circumstances
Useful information As the COVID-19 outbreak and its fallout continues, the CIPHE will keep you up to date with changes in legislation or financial support, health and safety guidance and more. • G o to www.ciphe.org.uk or @CIPHE on Twitter • The Construction Industry Council regularly updates on meetings with the government at: www.cic.org.uk • Public Health England has the latest health advice at: www.gov.uk • For apprenticeship advice, call the DfE coronavirus helpline 0800 046 8687
He tells P&H Engineering: “Things have been going as well as can be expected. The biggest impact has been development: work getting a product to launch has stopped. The parts we had planned to come from China haven’t turned up. “We know our biggest distributor is running on a skeleton staff. We’ve accepted zero orders. From a company point of view, we are pulling our horns in but I’m not going to go bust overnight. Like everyone else, we’ve applied for government money.”
Helping hands Money is a critical issue for agency workers, installers on zero hours contracts and the self-employed who will
COVID-19 / FEATURE
SURVEY REVEALS LONG-TERM CONCERNS OF BUSINESSES At the beginning of the crisis, smaller firms were confident about the future. However, the Eureka Research survey for which CIPHE members contributed over 30% of the responses, found members are worried about how they will be performing in a year’s time. Smaller operators were the most concerned. The survey said: “Despite the economic climate being fairly optimistic going into this crisis, four in 10 plumbing and heating businesses are very nervous about operating conditions in six to 12 months’ time, particularly sole traders and small businesses.” However, the survey also showed that some business owners plan to use the extra free time during lockdown as an opportunity for improvement, with 23% planning to update their technical skills, 20% using the time to find better value services (such as insurance), and 15% working on marketing and promotion.
struggle until help from the government comes through. An industry charity, the Lighthouse Club, has experienced a 25% increase in requests to its hardship fund and has resorted to paying supermarkets for food. It is also supporting a family of a man who committed suicide because of debt fears caused by the crisis. The charity has launched an urgent appeal for donations for its emergency hardship fund and hopes to raise more than £1m. Chief executive officer Bill Hill says: “If people get desperate they will do desperate things. They are often only one or two paydays away from poverty. They need our help to feed their families and to pay their bills for heating and lighting.” In previous downturns, apprentices were usually among the first to be made redundant. They are in a particularly tough situation because the government has relaxed employer contributions that fund their college places. The Department for Education has enabled trainers to allow furloughed apprentices to continue their training “as long as it does not provide services to or generate revenue for their employer”. The department is allowing the modification of end-point assessment arrangements and encouraging e-learning where possible. Apprenticeships minister Gillian Keegan has pledged: “This is a difficult time for apprentices, employers and providers of apprenticeship training, assessment and external assurance. The government is committed to supporting apprentices, and employers continue to build the skills capabilities the country needs now and in the future.” And what will that future look like? Russell Armstrong is positive about the sector’s post-virus recovery: “Contracts aren’t going away. Everybody will be so keen to get out of the house that when this is over, it will pick up quickly. It’s a case of ‘keep calm and carry on.’”
We have been working extensively to support our members Rob Berridge is also pragmatic about the coming months: “Water will always have to be moved from A to B. The contracts that are new, they’re going to be put back and that will help the workforce eventually. It’s going to cause more of a backlog.” He doubts there will be a big switch to online training: “Manufacturers have jumped on it and there was already a push in that direction but face-to-face training is so much more productive as one can gauge the learning better from people and help specifically where needed. I’ve been training people for a few years and I’m clear there is no substitute for one-on-one learning to see if they’ve understood it.” The next challenge for the CIPHE will be ensuring the sector isn’t hit like it was following the financial crash. Kevin Wellman says: “The government must plan out the long-term impact of our response to COVID-19 and collectively we have a duty to ensure that the careers of people from apprentices to business owners are not damaged irreparably during this challenge. Implementation of the response to Grenfell and the next steps on the route to delivering on net-zero carbon targets mean there is too much at stake for the Government’s own agenda for that to be allowed to happen.”
Useful contacts The Lighthouse Club The Lighthouse Club offers mental health support and more. It has an app that can be downloaded onto your phone to help with stress, depression and more. To find out more about their welfare grants, go to: www.lighthouseclub.org
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GOING UNDERGROUND Plumbing and heating engineering have been critical to the success of the Crossrail project right from the start
ondon is a 2,000-year-old city with growing pains. Its population is projected to reach 10 million people by 2035. That will massively increase the strain on an already creaking transport infrastructure: in 2017 there were an average 26.8 million trips around the capital per day. The Elizabeth Line – perhaps still better known as Crossrail – is one solution to this problem. The construction of this new railway, including a 13-mile section of the London Underground, is Europe’s biggest infrastructure project and will transform travel in London when it opens next year. Although work didn’t actually begin on the project until 2008, the proposal has been discussed by planners and governments since the 1940s. The project is creating services that will run from Reading and Heathrow to the west of the capital, to Shenfield and
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Abbey Wood in the east. It will increase central London’s rail capacity by 10%. As with every major infrastructure project, Crossrail has faced formidable opposition, gone over budget – the latest estimate is £18.25bn in total and almost £3.5bn more than originally budgeted– and been delayed several times. The firm’s chief executive officer Mark Wild says: “There are no shortcuts to delivery of this hugely complex railway.” The Elizabeth Line is one of the most technically advanced rail systems in the world and it has used plumbing, heating and ventilation expertise as part of the engineering.
There are no shortcuts to delivery of this hugely complex railway
Digging deep This began right from the very first tunnelling schemes. The main hazard encountered during construction of the sprayed concrete lining works was the presence of high pore-water pressures in
CROSSRAIL / FEATURE
Did you know? An 1878 tunnel has been re-used in the scheme but 13 million litres of water had to be pumped out first
CROSSRAIL PROJECT IN NUMBERS
200 MILLION PROJECTED PASSENGERS TRACK STRETCHES MORE THAN
The Elizabeth Line will use state-ofthe-art Bombardier Class 345 trains, seen here during system testing
the sandy layers of the upper part of the Lambeth Group – the deepest soil layer under London. The team involved reveals the plumbing solution: “A surface dewatering scheme comprising inclined ejectors outside the site boundaries at 8m centres was developed to depressurise the groundwater.” Throughout the construction, the project has been meeting tough sustainability and technical targets set by the government. The trains had to be energy efficient and have air conditioning. The solution, according to a Crossrail spokesman, was “to integrate the civil engineering, systems and rolling stock from the outset”. A report to the Mayor of London reveals how they did it: “The size of the tunnels to accommodate these trains gives more space between the roof of the train and
the tunnel. This improves the ability for air to be circulated through the tunnels. The tunnel ventilation provided is designed to be able to control smoke should an incident occur. “This level of ventilation can provide control of tunnel temperature with trains that have air-conditioning without requiring the ventilation equipment to be increased in size. All heat sources have been assessed and a holistic approach taken to reduce heat generation and control the tunnel temperature. With this approach the air conditioning on the trains will not result in excessive tunnel temperatures or increased ventilation systems.” Passengers won’t notice one of the smartest innovations that will keep them cool in summer: ‘humped’ track gradients at each station. There’s an uphill gradient on the approach to a station and downhill gradient on
40 STATIONS OF WHICH 10 ARE ALL NEW
MILLION MAN HOURS HAVE GONE INTO IT SO FAR
200M TRAIN LENGTH
1,500 PASSENGERS PER TRAIN
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P&H ENGINEERING 17
FEATURE / CROSSRAIL
JUST THE JOB?
Stations have been designed to support heating and ventilation for shop, office and homes
departure. This utilises gravity to slow and accelerate the trains, reducing heat created by brakes and motors. Crossrail’s designers have also created another neat solution: “The stations incorporate under-platform extraction ducts which remove heat from the train under-frames, helping minimise the heat transfer from the tunnel to the stations.”
Forward motion Future-proofing has been included in the project. A network of ground heat pumps has been built into the Liverpool Street station to extract heat from the clay deep under the surface. These will be used in an office complex that has yet to be built. It’s not just the infrastructure that makes clever use of energy. The £1bn trains, Bombardier Class 345s, are fitted with intelligent air-conditioning systems and regenerative brakes which capture the energy they create when stopping. They use 30% less energy as a result. Even the Old Oak Common depot that houses 42 of the 70-train fleet is a huge sustainability hub. Built by Taylor Woodrow for £142m, it runs on a renewable energy system. Over 30% of the new depot will run on a renewable energy system that uses ground-sourced heating from 150m deep bore holes. Thermal technology controls the temperature, saving more than 500
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tonnes of CO2 emission per year. Energy is generated from photovoltaic (PV) cells on its massive roof. The plumbing work on site also includes a train wash facility generating enough grey water to clean the 200m long trains. What has also not been promoted is the free CPD that is being offered by all of the companies involved in the development. Assessment documents, analysis reports and more have been open-sourced on the web to share all the learning from the project (visit www. learninglegacy.crossrail.co.uk). The team explains why: “The Crossrail Learning Legacy aims to share knowledge and insight, through means such as case studies and technical papers providing lessons and recommendations to help others. Documents and templates that were used successfully on the Crossrail programme are provided to be ‘pinched with pride’ by other projects.” When the service fully opens, most passengers won’t be aware of the innovations but those involved say they will get huge benefits. Chairman of Crossrail, Tony Meggs, says: “It’s really an incredible thing, the biggest project in Europe right now and when it’s done it’s going to be a wonder, an extraordinary state-of-the-art railway that really is going to transform life for many people in the capital and beyond.”
Sounds like the kind of work you want to be involved with? There are plenty ways into landing HVAC jobs in the rail industry. Transport for London is looking to hire more than 70 apprentices, many of which will be able to move into HVAC roles in future. Tricia Wright, Chief People Officer at TfL, says: “We’re looking for inquisitive, enthusiastic individuals who reflect London’s diversity to join our apprenticeship programme in a range of areas.” To find out more, go to: www.careers.tfl.gov.uk/ category/apprenticeships/ More advanced? A typical role is HVAC systems engineer Duties include: Rolling stock HVAC design including thermal load calculations, pre-conditioning time estimates and CO2 calculations, air distribution and temperature investigations, heat gain assessments.
Find out more The Features section of P&H Engineering online includes an archive of articles from the magazine on different aspects of plumbing and heating innovations, from low-carbon heating to toilet design for developing countries. Read more at www.pandhengineering.co.uk
RISKY BUSINESS From sole traders to major projects, the insurance industry is a crucial for firms covering the potential cost of claims. We look at how our industry can work more closely with insurers
t the root of a multi-millionpound problem is a cause worth a few pennies. Figures from the Association of British Insurers (ABI) show that in the first nine months of 2017, the cost of damage caused by escape of water was £483m. Insurers pay £2.5m for water escape claims every day and nearly one in five insurance claims are for water damage. Whether it’s a burst pipe, a substandard part or a poor installation, the problem could often have been avoided in the first place by investing just a little bit more on the right parts and skills. The irony isn’t lost on the insurance industry which carries the financial settlement cost. But there is also the reputational cost to the heating and plumbing industry which affects the people who do a good job. In domestic settings, research by the ABI reveals the causes in the increase of water damage claims: • more plumbed-in domestic appliances; • more central heating system installations;
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GETTING COVER UIB specialises in the plumbing and heating industry in the UK and it is the only insurance partner recommended by the CIPHE. In addition to Public Liability Insurance, UIB can also help with insurance for tools, vans, breakdown, motor fleet, employer’s liability and much more. It offers preferential premiums for CIPHE members and policies are available to buy online 24/7, through UK-based call centres, via email or face to face. To find out more, visit www.uibdirect.co.uk
New appliances should be plumbed in by professionals
• an increase in the number of en-suite bathrooms and downstairs toilets; • more complex plumbing systems; • hidden and integrated plumbing; • the use of less damage-resilient materials such as chipboard.
The shock of the new One of the biggest problems has been new developments where bad design, cheap parts and work by unqualified tradesmen has led to a rise in claims. The problems have been so bad that Parliament has investigated the issue on behalf of angry homeowners. And it’s not just the financial cost that is a problem. With demand for water on the increase, water firms are under pressure from environmental campaigners and the regulator Ofwat to cut water waste through leakage. So the plumbing industry has stepped in to help solve all this by working in partnership with water companies and product manufacturers to incentivise good practice. The idea is simple: qualified workers do a better job and lower the risk.
INSURANCE / FEATURE
The more qualified and better trained you are, the lower the premium Some water companies are providing incentives if an approved plumber or approved groundworker is used during construction. It’s being done through WaterSafe, the national accreditation body funded by the water industry to help customers find competent and qualified plumbers in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. It’s backed by the CIPHE. WaterSafe has also created leaflets giving advice on the water industry code of practice for laying water pipes as well as using approved products and WaterSafe approved plumbers and groundworkers. This ensures plumbing complies with the Water Supply (Water Fittings) Regulations, designed to keep drinking water healthy and prevent waste. Julie Spinks, Director of WaterSafe, says: “By installing robust water connections and watertight plumbing, developers will also keep customers’ water bills down as all new properties are fitted with water meters so homeowners pay for the amount of water they use.” But an unsuspecting installer can find themselves on the end of a legal battle if someone on a site has failed to follow instructions or someone else has subsequently altered a system. The ABI explains the rise in claims and what consumers should be doing: “Claims for water leaks are a growing concern for our members given the rapidly increasing cost of the average claim. This is largely down to the higher cost of repairing homes and businesses which are using luxury fittings on an increasing basis. The trend for boxing in fitments and pipes means the early signs of a leak can go unnoticed and more damage is
done before a problem is detected.” “The ABI has been promoting advice to consumers on the importance of having new appliances installed professionally and the need to investigate damp patches promptly. Insurers also encourage the use of leak detection devices which can be extremely effective at preventing damage. Again, they need to be fitted by a professional.” For installers, that emphasis on being a professional is vital – as is being able to evidence it.
Show your credentials Christopher Bates, Divisional Director at industry insurance broker UIB, says: “We’re not insuring the 50p part you’re using, we’re insuring against the damage caused by the insured peril i.e. water damage. In order to get premiums down for covering liability, we need to provide underwriters with the evidence. The more qualified and better trained you are, the lower the premium.” The same goes for carrying out insurance claim work: “If we’ve got someone with CIPHE membership and you’re qualified, compared to someone who isn’t, who would we rather employ?” The three common causes of litigation, he says, are poor controls, poor management and poor qualifications. In the event of a legal issue arising, proving your claim with contracts, photos and sign-off by an approved person are crucial. He says: “If there’s a court case for negligence and a member is asked to provide evidence, you need it. Of course, there are mistakes and you can mitigate it with an all-risk policy. It’s better to be safe than sorry.”
More information Now is a good time to review your insurance requirements. CIPHE members can benefit from advice and preferential premiums from our partner, UIB. To find out more, visit www.uibdirect.co.uk
AVOIDING THE VOID Homeowners might think they are saving themselves a fortune by cutting corners on plumbing and heating. But if it leads to a claim, their ‘hack’ may leave them hacked off if their insurance firm decides they have voided their claim. The Association of British Insurers has this advice for homeowners that you can pass on to customers. 1) Keep on top of property care “Insurance is not a maintenance contract. You have a responsibility to look after your property.” 2) Don’t DIY. Leave it to a professional “You can’t claim for a problem caused by a DIY mishap if you didn’t pay for accidental damage cover in the first place.” 3) Don’t stay away too long “Unoccupied properties may be treated cautiously by insurers. In cold periods, pipes can freeze and burst. Keep the heating maintained at 15˚C.” Leaflets for both installers and homeowners can be downloaded at watersafe. org.uk/developers
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Technical and professional advice on legionella and maintaining clear water systems, as well as CPD questions PAUL HARMER Lead technical consultant CIPHE CEng MIET Paul is a chartered engineer who has consulted and led on many high-profile plumbing and heating industry projects firstname.lastname@example.org
Managing legionella risk in a domestic hot and cold water system How to install a safe domestic hot water system
s discussed on page 11, stagnant, or standing water can cause conditions that increase the risk of growth and spread of legionella and other biofilm-associated bacteria, and care must be taken to encourage the safety of building water systems and devices once the current lockdown is lifted. The CIPHE Water Safety Group recently published an insight guide
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called Legionella risk assessing in domestic properties which is aimed at advising the installer on how to carry out a legionella risk assessment in a domestic property, with additional guidance on how to install safe hot water systems. Some of the key documents that should be consulted for practical advice on how to reduce the risk of legionella in residential buildings are:
It is important to understand some basic principles; keep it hot, keep it cold, keep it moving, keep it clean HSG 274 parts 1 to 3, HSG 282, Part G of the building regulations and the water regulations. However, if an installer carries out work in a healthcare setting such as a hospital, then they must further consult documents such as the Approved Code of Practice (ACOP) L8 and Health Technical Memorandum HTM 04 parts A to C, which are specifically applicable to the health sector.
WATER SAFETY / THE FIX
The basic principles of managing legionella risk
KEEP IT HOT
Keep the temperature between 50˚C and 60˚C
KEEP IT COLD
Keep the temperature below 20˚C
KEEP IT CLEAN
Keep the water clean by preventing the presence of nutrients
KEEP IT MOVING
Keep the water moving by reducing stagnation to a minimum
WHAT IS LEGIONELLA? There are many types of water-borne diseases, however the most well-known type is the condition caused by legionella pneumophila, commonly referred to as Legionnaires’ disease. The disease is contracted by the inhalation of small water droplets containing the bacterium legionella pneumophila, which can also cause the less fatal disease Pontiac fever.
The bacterium becomes active and thrives by multiplying in warm water and can be contracted through the inhalation of fine aerosols such as from a shower. Legionnaires’ disease produces severe pneumonia-type symptoms and can result in death so it is important that every plumbing and heating installer possesses the knowledge and competence to protect the public.
Insulated cold water pipe preventing heat transfer
HOW TO PREVENT LEGIONELLA GROWTH IN A DOMESTIC HOT WATER SYSTEM When installing a domestic hot water system it is always important to understand some very basic principles; keep it hot, keep it cold, keep it moving, keep it clean (figure 1) which will control and mitigate legionella pneumophila bacteria and pseudomonas aeruginosa biofilm bacteria.
KEEP IT HOT, KEEP IT COLD The temperature of the hot and cold water within our homes can be at risk of legionella growth if the water within the plumbing system is not maintained at a temperature outside of those within (figure 1). This temperature range is between 20°C and 50°C with 37°C being an ideal temperature for accelerating bacteria growth; however, some simple installation practices will help reduce this risk significantly. 1. Keep the cylinder/calorifier maintained at a temperature of between 60°C and 65°C. 2. Insulate the cold water pipework to prevent the transfer of heat from other services such as heating pipes (figure 2) 3. If there is a cold water storage cistern in the loft space, then ensure it is fully insulated to avoid water reaching temperatures above 20°C. 4. Install a pumped domestic hot water return circuit in long pipe runs and ensure the return temperature never drops below 50°C at point of return to the cylinder/calorifier. 5. Insulate the hot water pipework on the hot water return circuit to maintain the higher return temperatures if necessary.
KEEP IT MOVING One of the most important installation practices to follow is to avoid installing pipework “dead legs” and “blind ends”.
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THE FIX / WATER SAFETY
Find out more Buy the CIPHE insight guide on legionella risk assessment at www.ciphe.org.uk
FIGURE 3 AÂ dead leg could simply be a pipe that is supplying a rarely used outlet, or a circuit which has been capped off after an outlet has been removed. If a dead leg is to be removed then you must cap the pipe off at the t-piece (figure 3) or, ideally, remove the branch and t-piece. As the heading above suggests (keep it moving), it has long been known that if water can stagnate for a period of time, it will allow bio slime and bacteria to thrive. This principle also applies to cold water storage cisterns where it is paramount that the pipework is installed to avoid stagnation within the cistern (figure 4). The cistern needs to be installed in a way which ensures that the whole water volume within the cistern can be replenished with fresh water when in use. Excessive storage capacity can be a contributing factor. The inlet and outlet should be installed on opposite sides of the cold water storage cistern to encourage water flow and avoid low flow areas. One of the issues when installing a plumbing system that runs at higher water temperatures is the increased risk of scalding, therefore it is important to install a thermostatic mixing valve (TMV) as close as practically possible to the outlet. However, the TMV must not be installed in a position outside of these requirements, such as by the hot water cylinder, as it can pose a significant risk.
Removing dead legs in pipework Redundant pipe previously capped-off at this point Live pipe still in use
Redundant pipe charged with water should be removed
Redundant branch pipe recapped
KEEP IT CLEAN One of the highest risk areas within a plumbing system for the growth and infection of legionella is from an outlet such as a shower head. As discussed earlier, legionella can be inhaled through fine water vapour droplets such as the fine mist created from the use of a shower. Therefore, it is important to ensure shower head outlets are inspected and appropriately cleaned on a monthly basis following a legionella risk assessment that has highlighted a risk. In addition to keeping outlets clean, it is important to prevent the over-sizing of hot and cold pipework, as an over-sized pipe can lead to laminar flow regions at the pipe wall creating a
Correct installation of cold water storage cisterns Roof void Vent pipe from DHW cylinder terminating in compliance with Water Regulations Schedule 2 R 20
Alternative â€” vent pipe from DHW Cylinder terminating in compliance with HSG274 Part 2 CI 2.37
vulnerability to the formation of biofilm. BS 806 parts 1 to 5, Specification for Installations Inside Buildings Conveying Water for Human Consumption, should be consulted when designing hot and cold water services for residential dwellings.
HOW CAN I PROGRESS MY KNOWLEDGE IN LEGIONELLA RISK ASSESSMENT? The CIPHE insight guide Legionella risk assessment in domestic properties is a simple but effective practical guide that explains how to carry out a risk assessment in a domestic environment, which includes a step-by-step process for producing a professional risk assessment. In addition to this, CIPHE members will be able to take the online assessment to become a CIPHE approved legionella risk assessor from this summer. Please contact the CIPHE technical department via technical@ ciphe.org.uk or 01708 463 117.
Vent pipe discharge to atmosphere
Visit the Advice section on the P&H Engineering website to find archived TechTalk articles on designing and installing heating and hot water systems in a variety of settings: www.pandhengineering.co.uk
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Your CPD CIPHE members are expected to complete 30 hours of CPD each year. Completion of these assessments can count towards this requirement.
Assessment: Water safety and legionella risk 1
What British Standard covers the Specification for Installations Inside Buildings Conveying Water for Human Consumption, which includes the sizing of hot and cold water pipework in residential buildings? A: BS 1264 B: BS 7671 C: BS EN 12831 D: BS EN 806
What guidance document highlights an alternative method for terminating the vent pipe from a DHW cylinder? A: HSG 274 Part 2 B: BS EN 806 part 2 C: BS EN 8558 D: Part G3 of the Building Regulations
What is the minimum return temperature allowed at the point of return to the cylinder/calorifier? A: 45°C B: 48°C C: 50°C D: 52°C
What to do
Answer the questions (using an additional A4 sheet if necessary) and return by scanning and emailing or posting to the address below.
Under the CIPHE Code of Professional Standards, members are required to participate in CPD
Your details Please complete this form
This temperature of 37°C is considered the ideal temperature for legionella pneumophila bacteria growth. What is the wider temperature range at which it will multiply? A: 20°C to 50°C B: 15°C to 45°C C: 20°C to 55°C D: 20°C to 52°C
CIPHE membership number:
What temperature should you maintain the cylinder or calorifier at? A: Between 60°C and 65°C. B: Between 50°C and 60°C. C: Between 45°C and 65°C. D: Between 65°C and 75°C.
Return to: CPD Assessment, CIPHE, 64 Station Lane, Hornchurch, Essex RM12 6NB
The bacterium legionella pneumophila, which can cause Legionnaires’ disease, can be contracted through the inhalation of fi ne aerosols such as from a shower. True or false? ..................................................................................... ..................................................................................... .....................................................................................
Email: email@example.com Or visit the members-only area of the CIPHE website: www.ciphe.org.uk/cpd
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THE FIX / STANDARDS
Chemical water treatments can help to keep systems clearer for longer
Protect and serve Protecting whole heating and cooling systems is now the industry standard thanks to BS 7593:2019. Francine Wickham, global marketing director at Fernox, explains the five steps to success and products that can help
ne small change in rules but a giant leap for best practice came just under a year ago from British Standards. The roll-out of BS 7593:2019 was a massive shift in approach from focusing on sections of an installation to standardising best practice in the wholeÂ system. It set the new British Standard for preparation, commissioning and maintenance of domestic central heating
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and cooling water systems. Behind it are the key issues that everyone in the industry is grappling with: energy efficiency, environmental concerns and sustainability. A top performing system will use less energy, will consistently deliver heat or coolness and ensure the longevity of parts meaning less equipment is scrapped. The goal is to keep the system working at optimum efficiency and extend system life.
Central to the new standard is a system of regular checks and testing against a benchmarking list. As ever, record keeping is also vital to be able to show that the work has been done. There are a number of manufacturers creating products for you to choose from in order to meet the new standards. Fernox is one of them. Francine Wickham, the companyâ€™s global marketing director, sets out the checklist for a best-practice approach to system protection. The most significant amendments require installing an in-line system filter and regularly testing the system to highlight and rectify any issues. To comply with BS 7593:2019, it is important for installers to follow five steps: clean, guard, protect, maintain and test.
STANDARDS / THE FIX
STEP 3: PROTECT
In-line filters help to protect systems
STEP 1: CLEAN Installers should clean central heating systems to remove any sludge and debris. This can be achieved by using a recognised cleaning method such as powerflushing, mains pressure or gravity cleaning. Only after the cleaning process has been completed can installers dose the system with chemical water treatment and install an in-line filter. Systems should also be cleaned before the boiler is installed or when a new boiler has been isolated from the rest of the system.
STEP 2: GUARD To prevent the build-up of sludge and debris within the central heating system, installers should install an in-line filter. A filter will provide continued protection by capturing and containing any debris and thus preventing it from re-entering the system. For the best results, installers should opt for a filter that removes both magnetic and non-magnetic debris. For example, the Fernox TF1 Filters use Hydronic Particle Separation technology for maximum protection. Installing a filter will maintain the efficiency of the system and extend its life cycle.
To safeguard a central heating system from the damaging effects of corrosion, sludge and scale build-up, installers should dose the system with the correct quantity of chemical water treatment products and should apply inhibitors and protectors. Shielding against corrosion debris helps to reduce boiler noise, radiator or pipework blockages and boiler breakdowns. Fernox has made it simple for installers to dose central heating systems correctly by re-formulating its chemical range. Now, the ‘F’ range and Express range of products can treat systems up to 130 litres, 16 radiators, or underfloor systems up to 250m2 – which means one bottle is suitable for use in 97% of UK homes.
STEP 4: MAINTAIN To ensure filters continue to work efficiently, it is important for installers to regularly clean the filter to remove any sludge or debris that has been captured. BS 7593:2019 recommends servicing of in-line filters should be included as part of the re-commissioning process, ideally as part of the annual boiler service and routine maintenance.
It’s important to give filters regular maintenance
If any issues are highlighted during the testing process, installers can easily rectify them
STEP 5: TEST Under BS 7593:2019, installers are urged to check inhibitor levels annually and conduct a laboratory test every five years, to identify and prevent any issues and keep the system working at optimum efficiency and extend system life. This can be achieved with a system water test. If any issues are highlighted during the testing process, installers can easily rectify them. It is also important for installers to note the recent changes that have been made to the Benchmark commissioning checklist. Previously, installers had to state if they had used a cleaner or inhibitor – however, it now asks which brand and product the installer has used. The installation of a filter is also listed, and the inclusion of water softeners has been added to the scale reducer category. Industry standards, such as BS 7593:2019 and the updates to Benchmark, are vital for standardising practices across the plumbing and heating industry and ensuring that central heating systems are properly protected and maintained.
More information To find out more about the range of Fernox products that can help you adhere to BS 7593, speak to your Fernox representative or visit www.fernox.com
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ADVERTORIAL / RINNAI
DON’T REPLACE ‘LIKE FOR LIKE’ IN HEALTHCARE SITES Rinnai continuous flow hot water delivery units and systems can offer unlimited amounts of hot water for hand washing and hygiene in all healthcare applications and sites
ot water for hand washing and hygiene is a critical component in combating the COVID-19 virus, especially in healthcare sites. For many years gas fired storage/ cylinder tank water heaters were a preferred mode of hot water delivery. However, new technology in the form of continuous flow gives limitless amounts of hot water. So, especially at times like this, when a stored water unit comes to the end of its working life or has failed, it is assumed that replacing ‘like for like’ is the best option – and 20 or 30 years ago it may have been. But that was then, and this is now. New technologies and practises are combating the current public health challenge. The technology in hot water delivery is continuous flow hot water heating with
constant flows of temperature-accurate and controlled delivery. Any healthcare site needing a new hot water heating and delivery method should start with designing and sizing of the system. Before a system is updated it is best to check the appliances that were originally installed are enough to meet the site’s present-day hot water needs. Pete Seddon from Rinnai, the leading UK supplier of continuous flow units,
Rinnai continues to offer services to essential works
says: “This is something we can offer healthcare services and essential works right now. “There is a significant amount of work involved in a ‘like for like’ replacement of a gas fired stored water heater. Most plant rooms are limited in space which would require the removal of old equipment before the like-for-like appliance can be installed. “Not only that, but if the appliance being replaced was non-condensing and the new appliance condensing, then the flue would most likely require changing as well as the provision to discharge condensate. The old equipment may need to be dismantled before it can be removed. This requirement to remove equipment would have a major impact and it takes so much time. “The hot water system would have to be shut down to allow such major works to take place and an active healthcare site cannot allow this to happen.”
Size matters “The size and weight of these appliances can make life very difficult for installers. They are usually manufactured from enamel lined (glass lined) mild steel which can make it extremely heavy and also fragile. It would require multiple personnel to manoeuvre these out and in, maybe specialist lifting equipment. All of this will add a lot of time and cost to the overall installation. Not only that, but if specialist lift equipment and cranes are required you are going to need suitably trained personnel and permits.
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RINNAI / ADVERTORIAL
“So, what do continuous flow solutions offer that makes this whole process a lot easier? Let’s start with their size and weight. This type of technology is normally a similar size to a modern-day combi boiler but only weighing at most 30kg. That is a one-man lift. These pack a punch as well, with two sizes available in 47kW and 58kW. This equates to a large volume of hot water for such a physically small appliance. (774 and 954 litres per hour at a 50-degree rise). “The other benefit is the ability to cascade these appliances so when more hot water is required you simply add more continuous flow water heaters. A single installer could create a system that would produce vast amounts of temperatureaccurate hot water, and if one unit needs to be shut down the whole site still has ready access to hot water. “Also possible is a ‘plug and play’ cascade sequencing control system that
will automatically control how many appliances are running at any one time; all the installer has to do is plug it in and select the primary water heater. “These appliances are generally wall mounted but using a cascade frame removes the requirement of wall space. The frame is lightweight, and two people can easily carry it into a plant room.” “One of the big benefits we have seen with the utilisation of the cascade frames is the fact that a lot of the installation works can be carried out while the existing equipment is still in place. This depends on floor space within the plant rooms, but this tends not to be an issue. The cascade frames are bolted to the floor and the water heaters mounted on to the frames. This will then allow some of the pipe work to be started as well as some of the flueing installation. All that
is left to do is to connect the pipework to the existing system, finish off the flue and then the system is ready for testing, purging, flushing etc. “With a continuous flow system there are also externally sited units for sites where there is just no space in a plant room. These external hot water heaters are fully weather protected and hold IPX5D rating. They also come with frost protection down to -20°C and will keep the appliance protected so long as the mains power supply is left switched on. “During the lockdown, Rinnai continues to offer full services to essential works such as NHS facilities, care homes, schools and supermarkets. This operational support has had such a huge response that the company has committed to maintaining and continuing for the duration – and beyond.”
More information For more information on the Rinnai product range visit www.rinnaiuk.com
RINNAI SERVICES TO ESSENTIAL WORKS AND INSTALLERS •R innai’s Runcorn UK HQ emergency weekend opening and sales support – open for any emergency or essential equipment, provision of new units and for spares. • Weekend operational & technical support help line - simply call 01928 531870 and select sales and if the call is not answered, immediately leave a voicemail and the company will respond within an hour. • Collection of new units/
spares from Runcorn HQ for Saturday and Sunday. All will adopt ‘safe distancing’ in any contact for this or deliveries. •E mergency delivery on working days and weekends / out of hours – under “essential works” circumstances and, where possible, Rinnai will readily offer a delivery service to site. •O ut-of-hours and weekend technical support – installers, site managers, contractors and all end-
users simply call 01928 531870 select technical and if the call is not answered immediately leave a voicemail. Response will be within one hour between 08:00 and 22:30, seven days a week. This means there be a technical response every day of the week. Rinnai’s complete range of hot water heating units are available for next day delivery on orders placed before the previous midday.
Rinnai UK has excellent stock levels of all units in the range plus spares and accessories. Installers can contact the company direct to gain access to the supply of units. Call 01928 531 870 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com alternatively use the smart online contact points “Help Me Choose” or “Ask Us a Question”, all held on the website homepage at www.rinnaiuk.com
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Your Membership One of the key benefits of being a CIPHE member is being kept informed on the industry issues that matter TIM SAINTY Part 2: Code of Professional Standards
WE CAN WORK IT OUT When it comes to dealing with grievances, following the CIPHE’s Code of Professional Standards will help keep your reputation on track
n a world now dominated by social media, you do not even need a website or social media profile to be the centre of a glowing online testimonial. Local Facebook groups are acting as the fastest growing medium for word-of-mouth recommendations, or condemnations, meaning once private conversations between friends, family or neighbours, now take place in a public online forum – one that can make or break your reputation in minutes. As a rule of thumb, you need five positive reviews to outweigh the negative impact of one bad review. Therefore, you really want to avoid leaving any customer feeling they have cause for complaint. What’s more, all CIPHE members must abide by its voluntary Code of Professional Standards, and Point 5 sets out that members must ‘Uphold the
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dignity, standing and reputation of the Institute and the plumbing mechanical engineering services industry’. This means acting ‘professionally and adopt[ing] a form of behaviour and appearance that will not cause offence or embarrassment to others’.
CIPHE Membership Director Tim looks after the growing CIPHE membership, enhancing services for members and improving communications firstname.lastname@example.org +44 (0)1708 463102
Body language and eye contact play an important part in maintaining good customer relations
Any questions? Contact Tim Sainty via his details, above, if you have any enquiries regarding your CIPHE member benefits
COMMUNICATION IS KEY Did you know the cause of the majority of complaints received by the CIPHE is down to poor communication? Being able to listen to a problem and turn around the situation is one of the most important customer care skills you can learn. Back in the 1970’s, Dr Albert Mehrabian found that only 7% of communication is in the words we say, whilst 38% was in ‘non-verbal communication’ (the tone of voice) and 55% in body language. Faced with a complaint, your first instinct may be to go on the defensive, but it is absolutely the wrong thing to do. Stop, take a breath and think about what you are going to say and how you are going to say it. Be open with your body language, make good eye contact and be confident and calm in what you say. Learn to listen to your customer’s full grievance too – do not look disengaged and jump to conclusions based on half the problem. Make sure you repeat any key facts back and if necessary, write down any important points. The customer then knows they are being listened to and taken seriously. While the majority of jobs will go without a hitch, if you get even the slightest hint your client has a niggle, do not ignore your gut instinct, ask them. By taking responsibility for difficult situations through clear communication, you are upholding the CIPHE’s Code of Professional Standards. Everyone has to deal with complaints from time to time, but good communication will allow you to resolve minor issues before they become major ones.
LEARN TO SAY SORRY On the topic of complaints, it is important to learn when to say sorry. It is a very powerful word. Always remember it is the most effective and cheapest method of resolving a complaint. A 2016 study by Lewicki, Polin and Lount Jr found that the most compelling apologies included:
• • • • • •
Expression of regret Explanation of what went wrong Acknowledgement of responsibility Declaration of repentance Offer of repair Request for forgiveness
They found the best apologies (for the worst of actions) used all six aspects above, while minor indiscretions may only require a couple of aspects. The most important part of all apologies was the acknowledgement of responsibility. So, if faced with a complaint, take responsibility for it. Apologise if the fault is with you, or on behalf of any third party, explaining why things have gone wrong. Most importantly, take ownership of putting things right.
BE POSITIVE People like positivity. A positive mind is focused, flexible, productive and confident. It seeks to find the best outcome, whatever the situation. When breaking bad news to clients, having a positive attitude and using positive language can make all the difference. Focus on solutions to problems, rather than dwell on the negatives at hand. Example: “You should have had those pipes lagged and turned off the water quicker. That leak has caused a massive amount of damage, which will cost thousands to put right.” Turns into: “The water is off, so there will be no further damage. Let us replace the pipework here and make sure everything else is adequately lagged so this does not happen again. Have you spoken to your home insurance to see if you are covered for the damage? If you are not, don’t panic, I can help you work out what you need to do next.” Even though you are dealing with the same situation, focusing on a positive outcome will deliver far better customer care.
MORE MEMBERS JOIN ENGINEERING COUNCIL The drive to professionalise the industry has taken another step forward with the latest successful applicants to the Engineering Council. The CIPHE is delighted to announce the new group who have succeeded in gaining the Professional title of: Engineering Technician Registration with the Engineering Council • Gideon Olayinka Akinbowale,
London • Alan Charles Black, Cambridgeshire • Chun Lap Cheung, Kowloon, HK • Wojciech Chrobak, Surrey • Terence John Da Silva,
Surrey • Ho Yin Fung, Tung Chung, HK • Tsz Yin Fung, Yuen Long, HK • Christopher Richard Holly
Mid Glamorgan • Tsz Hong Hui, Kwun Tong, HK • Iavor Kolev, Essex • Ka Wai Leung, New Territories, HK • Adrian Liddell, North Humberside • Liam O’Brien, Cardiff • Matthew James Oakes, Kent • Simon Parker, Hertfordshire • Paul Randall, Gloucestershire • Thomas Robinson, Buckinghamshire • Ka Fai Sin, Yuen Long, HK • Ming Yu Wong, New Territories, HK
FIND OUT MORE For further information on the CIPHE’s Code of Professional Standards, visit www.ciphe.org.uk/consumer/code
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TO ADVERTISE IN P&H ENGINEERING CONTACT HARVEY FALSHAW: 0203 198 3092
Under pressure: addressing money fears If you are worried about money or struggling with debt, help is at hand
he sudden outbreak of the coronavirus caught everyone unprepared and money worries are a major issue for lots of people. If you were a casual employee, self-employed or a contractor, income disappeared very quickly. It’s a worrying time for anyone and fears about money can easily become a mental health issue. The good news is that there is a lot of assistance out there from people who can help you navigate the complicated benefits system, review your budget or provide emergency grants. There’s even help with food for those in hardship. The Lighthouse Club has plenty of experience of helping people with financial worries and promises not to turn anyone away. The charity has a helpline with trained advisers who can talk through issues, including debt worries. Their advice is to get guidance about benefits and then work out your budget so that you can start to feel in control. Chief executive officer Bill Hill says: “A lot of people are only one or two paydays away from poverty.
The key thing with debt is to make it manageable – and we can help www.ciphe.org.uk
GETTING HELP The Lighthouse Club The Lighthouse Club offers mental health support and more. It has an app that can be downloaded onto your phone to help with stress, depression and more. To find out more about their welfare grants, go to: www.lighthouseclub.org Turn2us Turn2us is a national charity that helps people in financial hardship to gain access to welfare benefits, charitable grants and support services. Find out more at: www.turn2us.org.uk CAP Christians Against Poverty is a charity specialising in debt counselling for people in financial difficulty, including those in need of bankruptcy or insolvency. Visit www.capuk.org to find out more.
Getting help with debt can help lighten the burden of worry
The key thing with debt is to make it manageable with a budget – and we can help with real emergencies.” Lighthouse Club also works with other organisations to ensure people get the benefits they are entitled to including filling in the forms that are required. Hill says: “Turn2Us is a very good place to go. They’ll help get those forms right first time.” He says attitudes have changed: “There used to be a lot of stigma around bankruptcy. However, it sometimes takes the weight off your shoulders and means you can start again.”
Local authorities Local authorities have set up hardship funds and can help with issues like council tax. Find out more on their individual websites.
He says that pushing yourself to be proactive is the first important step to take: “The main thing is taking action. Call someone, talk to someone. It’s the start. And remember we will get through this together.”
Resources to help Find more on anxiety conditions and support at www.anxietyuk.org.uk Call the Construction Industry Helpline on 0345 605 1956 or download the app from the App Store or Google Play. Find support for employers on improving workplace mental health www.buildingmentalhealth.net
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MEET THE MEMBERS
Jimmy Hendry EngTech FCIPHE RP The ultra-marathon running lecturer at Inverness College knows what life is like on the bottom of the world
What do you love about your job?
Working for the British Antarctic Survey is one of Jimmy’s highlights
I’ve always been a practical kind of guy. It’s getting down to the technical part of something. And 90% of the people you meet in the trade are really open and friendly.
How did you get into the industry?
How did you get into your current role?
I fell into it by mistake. I left school at 16 in 1992 and my friend said there was someone who was looking for a plumber. The only questions my boss Alan King asked me were: “Will you stick at it?” and “What size boots do you take?” His firm became one of the biggest housebuilders in Scotland and I became a plumber for 26 years and counting.
In October 2014 I returned from working abroad and came up to Inverness, supposedly for a six-week job, and I’m still here. I teach the first and second year plumbers and the ones who are not entirely sure what they want to do.
Tell us something people don’t know about you
I run ultra-marathons. I started running when I was 29 and thought, ‘This is getting easy’ and I’ve run 12 of them now. The furthest I’ve done is 43 miles.
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Have you got a standout moment?
I loved teaching in Namibia for VSO at the Namibian Institute of Mining Technology. I had a beach condo and it rained once in two years. Antarctica was a place I’d always wanted to go so I was thrilled to get a job there. They put you down in the summer – October – so that if you don’t like it, there’s a relief boat that can get you out. Only six of us saw the contract out with the British Antarctic Survey.
sure you’re not getting bored. If you’re not enjoying it, do something else.
What’s the most interesting thing you’ve learned?
A guvnor once said to me that you don’t have to earn a fortune to be happy – you can help someone along the way. When you can help someone, that’s one of the highlights of the job. Take a step back and look at yourself to make
What are the benefits of a CIPHE membership?
They’ve been great with me. Contact with and support from peers such as CIPHE Past-President, Tony Brunton, can be invaluable. His professional expertise in assisting me with a legal issue was irreplaceable, especially in his capacity as Master Plumber which then inspired me to achieve my own Master Plumber status too.
Would you do it all over again?
I’ve met some fantastic people, so definitely. With a few tweaks…