WA bans sale of unsafe open-flued gas heaters
- Open-flued gas space heaters and open-flued decorative effect gas appliances can only be sold if they have new safety features
- Prohibition applies to the sale of new and second-hand appliances
- Consumers should use existing appliances safely and have them serviced
Open-flued gas heaters that lack new safety shutdown features have been banned from sale in WA, with owners of existing appliances urged to have them regularly serviced.
WA’s Director of Energy Safety, Saj Abdoolakhan, issued the prohibition order on 10 October 2022 to ensure that open-flued gas heaters are sold with the required protection against carbon monoxide hazards. Carbon monoxide is a toxic gas that can cause serious illness and death.
Carbon monoxide can be drawn into living areas if an open-flued gas appliance is operating in a negative-pressure environment caused by inadequate ventilation and use of exhaust fans.
The ban applies to the sale of new and second-hand open-flued gas space heaters and open-flued decorative effect gas appliances that do not have safety features required by the current Australian Standards (AS/NZS 5263.1.3:2021 and AS/NZS 5263.1.8:2021).
These features include an automatic shutdown of the appliance within 15 minutes in a negative-pressure environment. Only a licensed gas fitter can reset the heater.
Open-flued gas heaters manufactured on or after 1 January 2022 should be compliant with the current standards, which were published in November 2021. Some appliances manufactured before this period may also comply.
Mr Abdoolakhan advised retailers and consumers to check the appliance’s information panel – or data plate – for key information such as the date of manufacture and whether it shows compliance with AS/NZS 5263.1.3:2021 or AS/NZS 5263.1.8:2021.
“You can also contact the manufacturer to confirm if the model is compliant,” he said.
“If your existing open-flued gas heater is not covered by the current standard, you should have it serviced by a licensed gas fitter before its next use and then at least every two years – or annually if it is more than 10 years old.
“When using the heater, always follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Allow for adequate ventilation and avoid using extractor fans as much as possible.”
Consumers, retailers and gas fitters can also search the Gas Technical Regulators’ Committee National Certification Database to check the details of a particular appliance.
More details on the prohibition are available at the Building and Energy website (dmirs.wa.gov.au), including frequently asked questions and information for gas fitters.
Media contact: BEmedia@dmirs.wa.gov.au
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