• 5JUN

    What policies can we expect from the ‘new’ government?

    5th Jun 2017

    The election is over, and the ‘new’ government has been formed………oh no, sorry, that was what I was expecting to write! Followed by a synopsis of the policy changes the industry can expect over the coming months and years. Now, following June’s election result I’m not sure at the time of writing, that anyone can predict what will happen next. That said, where there is a hung parliament I can’t see much happening that is too radical or different from where we are now.

  • 1JUN

    Innovation can be disruptive but it must happen

    1st Jun 2017

    The Heating and Hotwater Industry Council, HHIC, believe that Green Gas, including Hydrogen, is the preferred solution to meet UK heat demand.

  • 17MAY

    Red or blue tape – the burden of extra administration

    17th May 2017

    Most of us have heard of “red tape” – actually, ignore that. We have all heard of ‘red tape’, and whether we like the phrase or not, those extra burdens imposed on business by government or regulators are a real issue.

  • 15MAY

    Would you trade the gas industry for an all-electric future?

    15th May 2017

    In 2010, the Coalition Government suggested heat demand could be met by switching from gas to an all-electric solution. Government think tanks state that by 2050 ‘heat will no longer be provided on a large scale by individual gas boilers.

  • 2MAY

    Clean, protect, maintain, repeat.

    2nd May 2017

    The UK Government and the EU place great emphasis on the benefits of increased efficiencies, and reduced energy consumption, often through replacing or upgrading old inefficient appliances and systems. Whilst quite right, somewhat less “attractive” and headline-grabbing is maintaining and protecting these appliance and system efficiencies, despite the fact that they can deteriorate over time, particularly if adequate water treatment and protection are not undertaken at the time of installation, and increasingly, maintenance.

  • 1MAY

    How can we solve the heating industry skills shortage?

    1st May 2017

    Whilst the industry may evolve and develop as needs change, the fundamental need for a home to have heat and hot water will remain the same. This may very well be the reason you joined the profession- ‘job for life there’ came the advice when you were pondering over your future choices, and it seems you were wise to listen.

  • 10APR

    Retrospective Boiler Labelling- 6 months on

    10th Apr 2017

    Stewart Clements, Director at The Heating and Hotwater Industry Council talks about the new boiler labelling scheme, why it was created and how it is designed to provide an opportunity to start the energy efficiency conversation with consumers.

  • 3APR

    Energy Performance Certificate Review

    3rd Apr 2017

    In 2016 the Domestic Heat Strategy Group requested that the Heating and Hotwater Industry Council, HHIC form a panel to evaluate the effectiveness of the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) and to suggest amendments that could make it a more effective document. The panel also reviewed ways to encourage EPCs to be completed in a timelier manner and to better reflect the actual energy performance of a property.

  • 29MAR

    Gas fires- be more than just boilers

    29th Mar 2017

    There is no doubt that gas installers, like any trade, are working smarter and harder to win business. Many tradesmen are still reeling from the effects of the difficult economic climate we have experienced in recent years and despite signs of improvement it can still be a tough market, particularly for the self-employed.

  • 13MAR

    Are you estimating your estimates?

    13th Mar 2017

    Trade businesses must present pricing proposals to prospective customers (that’s a lot of P’s, apologies) in order to secure the work. These quotes depend on countless different factors.

  • 2MAR

    Condensing boilers- do they do what it says on the tin?

    2nd Mar 2017

    For twelve years; since April 2005 when revisions to the Building Regulations came into force, stating that all replacement gas or oil boilers must be a condensing type, there has been debate - do they actually do what it says on the tin and condense in-situ?

  • 1MAR

    What’s the future for micro CHP?

    1st Mar 2017

    It’s tough to get customers to adopt innovations- and it’s getting harder all the time. Markets resist new ideas and products and accept the rest only grudgingly. For instance, television took more than three decades to become a mass medium!

  • 15FEB

    How can we solve the heating industry skills shortage?

    15th Feb 2017

    In at number 7 on the list of ‘Top 10 Industries that will never go away’ is ‘Professional Services’ under which the Heating and Plumbing industry fall. Simply because we support a basic household need- heat and hot water.

  • 13FEB

    Industry teams up against non-compliance of Building Regulations

    13th Feb 2017

    The plumbing and heating industry is one of the most regulated areas of construction, non-compliance with building regulations impacts the business of those who do comply and it puts lives at risk.

  • 2FEB

    Change is coming

    2nd Feb 2017

    Apps, selfies, emoji’s, mobile internet, SMART, the list goes on. They are all things that were little more than an idea on the back of a napkin just 10 years ago. Today they are part of everyday lives, and we welcome them (most of them) as they enable us to live smarter.

  • 1FEB

    Why limit boilers?

    1st Feb 2017

    In August last year, HHIC, along with 235 others, responded to the government consultation on the future of the Energy Company Obligation (ECO): Help to Heat. The main theme of that response was that ‘Cutting the number of boilers that can be delivered via ECO is a big mistake’.

  • 9JAN

    How can we encourage homeowners to make energy efficiency improvements?

    9th Jan 2017

    Much focus has been given to how homeowners can be ‘encouraged’ to become more energy efficient.

  • 2JAN

    New heating policy indicated

    2nd Jan 2017

    Now that all of the ‘excitement’ is over many of us have started the New Year with a refreshed view and renewed enthusiasm. In my last column I talked about the key things I should plan for in 2017 and of course the key things we (HHIC) should aim for. Top of the list was heating policy.

  • 2JAN

    The future of our gas supply

    2nd Jan 2017

    The gas we use today is changing. Less than 50% of the gas in our network is now provided by North Sea gas production. Consequently, our import infrastructure has increased fivefold over the past decade and there has been a significant move to include imported natural gas (both pipeline and liquefied natural gas or LNG) and alternative sources of gas, such as shale and bio gas.

  • 5DEC

    Retrospective Boiler Labelling- a voluntary conversation starter

    5th Dec 2016

    Stewart Clements, Director at The Heating and Hotwater Industry Council talks about the new boiler labelling scheme, why it was created and how it is designed to provide an opportunity to start the energy efficiency conversation with consumers.

  • 14NOV

    COMBI-BOILERS AND NON-RETURN/CHECK VALVES- ADVICE TO INSTALLERS

    14th Nov 2016

    With some areas of the UK increasingly under “water stress” due to rising demand and limitations on supply, the growing number of water meter installations, along with other environmental measures such as grey water recycling, are beginning to highlight a potential issue for households with gas-fired combi boilers and water heaters - particularly those where the appliance has been installed for some time

  • 7NOV

    Central Heating - a machine of society

    7th Nov 2016

    91.6% of homes in the UK use a Gas, Oil or Solid Fuel boiler as their main source of heating. 85% using a Gas boiler, making it the most dominant of fuel sources. Many of us have no experience of a home without a central heating boiler.

  • 1NOV

    Fuel Poverty rises as help demises

    1st Nov 2016

    ‘We are analysing your feedback’ - That is the current status of the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) Help to Heat consultation.

  • 25OCT

    New policy put forward by HHIC has a promising start

    25th Oct 2016

    The change to building regulations in 2005 remains one of the most successful government interventions into the residential energy market. By mandating that all new domestic gas boiler installations should use a condensing boiler, the government improved the energy efficiency of the residential heating sector at little additional cost to consumers and to government.

  • 11AUG

    Merchants are a pivotal part of the supply chain

    11th Aug 2016

    It’s an interesting time for the heating and plumbing industry. The current political turmoil leaves us all with more questions than we have answers. Not to mention the lack of policy to help us meet our legally-binding carbon reduction targets.

  • 14JUL

    HYDROGEN – The dawn of a heating revolution?

    14th Jul 2016

    The chemical element Hydrogen is the most common element in the periodic table and sci-entists estimate that it makes up 75% of the mass of the entire universe. The name hydrogen comes from the Greek name for water, because it only produces water when it is burned. Hydrogen may be easily found on other planets but here on earth it is bonded to other elements, such as oxygen, which then forms H20- water. Hydrogen gas is colourless, odourless, tasteless and non-toxic. Hydrogen gas was first produced artificially way back in the 16th century.

  • 13JUL

    HHIC support MOT style safety check proposal

    13th Jul 2016

    Landlord Gas safety checks are a familiar part of most registered gas engineers work schedule. Under regulation 36 The Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998, it is a legal requirement for all landlords to ensure that all gas appliances and flues are checked for safety within 12 months of install and at intervals of not more than 12 months since the last check. A gas safety record must be produced by the Gas Safe Register engineer showing the findings of the check.

  • 30JUN

    The future is Green

    30th Jun 2016

    UK Government has recognised the potential contribution of “green gas” in helping the UK meets its renewable energy targets. As a consequence considerable resources are being spent on ensuring better and more efficient delivery of gas, particularly in the R&D of biogas.

  • 16JUN

    The Domestic Heat Strategy Group- delivering Low Carbon Heat

    16th Jun 2016

    The Heating and Hotwater Industry Council, HHIC and its members have identified the actions that we believe the united heating industry, together with Government needs to take to cut carbon emissions.

  • 16JUN

    Smart- then, now and in the future

    16th Jun 2016

    Do you remember life before smart, in particular your smart phone? Mobile phones have been with us for 30 years or more but ‘back in the day’ they were just that- a mobile phone. As technology moved on other features became commonplace, like texting with buttons that you had to press enough times to get the required letter, or playing snake on the tiny pixel screen.

  • 16JUN

    HHIC joins the debate on Building Regulations Enforcement

    16th Jun 2016

    In late 2015, HHIC and representatives from across the industry joined the Association of Plumbing and Heating Contractors (APHC) at the House of Lords, Westminster to address the important issue of Building Regulations enforcement. The plumbing and heating industry is one of the most regulated areas of construction, non-compliance impacts the business of those who do comply and it puts lives at risk.

  • 1JUN

    Trade events are essential to the entire supply chain

    1st Jun 2016

    It can be challenging to find the time to attend trade events, especially when the ‘day job’ is stacking up, but aren’t you always glad when you leave the event full of get-up-and-go and a renewed enthusiasm for your industry that you have taken the time to attend? I know I am.