The Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering (CIPHE) states that there is increasing awareness of the need to use registered professionals to carry out HVAC fitting and servicing.
Its statement follows a dramatic increase in members of the public searching its website for heating and plumbing professionals, combined with new agreements with utilities operators.
Following the severe weather conditions at the end of last year, hits on its website were up 100% on the same period last year.
That figure rose to 225% after CIPHE chief executive Blane Judd was interviewed by BBC 24 and regional radio stations.
The association has also received more applications to register as professional installers respond to an increasing awareness amongst the public to ask for proof of competency.
Further to this, an agreement has been reached with Severn Trent Water to direct its customers to the CIPHE ‘find a registered professional by postcode’ service via full page advertisements in regional media.
Severn Trent joins Thames Water and Southern Water as industry supporters of the CIPHE.
“The public are beginning to realise that unqualified plumbing and heating installers can cause serious damage to their property or even their life,” said Mr Judd.
“During times of emergency such as burst pipes, consumers are vulnerable, but by using the ‘find a professional’ postcode search facility on our website they can be confident that the plumber they call out will be fully qualified and is also bound by our code of conduct.
“I fully expect other water companies to follow the lead of Thames, Severn and Southern, working towards ensuring that consumers are better informed by professionals who have the technical knowledge and practical expertise required to give best practice advice and carry out safe, professional installations.”