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CIPHE partners with Baxi over fake boiler parts concerns

Campaign with law firm Emms Gilmore Liberson sets out legal culpability for failing to install compliant parts

The Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering (CIPHE) is partnering with Baxi for a campaign designed to combat use of potentially dangerous counterfeit boiler parts.

 As part of a collaboration with law firm Emms Gilmore Liberson (EGL), the institute is campaigning to increase understanding on the legal implications facing installers if they are found to obtaining non-compliant parts for gas heating solutions.

Peter Adkins, regulatory services director at EGL, said that the increased role of online sales for parts was being seen as a particular problem for the industry, with installers and consumers potentially unaware counterfeit items may have been ordered.

Mr Adkins said, “It is so important that people are aware of the dangers they present, and how to identify them. If packages are unmarked on delivery then this should ring some alarm bells, and so too if the offer seems too good to be true – in most cases it is.

“It is unfair that installers are unwittingly buying these parts, thinking they have delivered a good service while being totally unaware they could face considerable time in prison if the boiler, constructed with illegal parts, blows up and takes lives.”

Baxi is now in the process of working with CIPHE in order to try and bring together players across the industry to curb the use of counterfeit parts and build awareness of the legal obligations of their use.

CIPHE technical director Paul Harmer warned of the increased sophistication of counterfeits part for use in the heating industry that were available online.

“With the rise of the online marketplace, it can be incredibly easy to unwittingly purchase fake parts or have to respond to a consumer who has done so. However, it is a case of buyer beware. Unless you are buying direct from the manufacturer or a recognised UK based merchant, that ‘genuine part’ may not be as advertised,” said Mr Harmer.

“We are hoping that this initiative with EGL and Baxi will help educate all installers on the tell-tale signs that they may be dealing with a counterfeit product.”

CIPHE has produced an online training video to support the campaign.  The video outlines methods to better identify counterfeit products and details key considerations around liability for fitting products or systems that can cause harm.

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