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chris davies

annual test certificate for LD2 Grade D system

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hi,we look after a couple of HMO's in witch we have fitted mains linked smoke detectors and call points a few years ago, we also have certificate of design, installation and commissioning and test the system as recommended (Category LD2 Grade D). The council now want us to complete a FSM3/ Appendix G6 of BS 5839: Part 1, as far as we can see this is for non domestic property, is there an annual certificate for LD2 Grade D systems ?

thanks Chris Davies

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Inspection and servicing certificates are not recommended for grade D systems, BS 5839: Part 6 2013 recommend only grade A systems require inspection and servicing certificates which are shown in Appendix H6 of BS 5839: Part 1 2013. In houses in multiple occupation, batteries in any radio-linked devices (such as manual call points, automatic detectors and fire alarm devices) should be changed by the servicing organization before the low battery warning condition is likely to be given.

Edited by Tom Sutton

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Guest

Hi I am in the same boat as the OP.

I have 5 student houses and they all have a grade D smoke/fire detection system, the houses take either 4 or 5 tenants. The houses are HMO's are not licenced (not needed). I am also being told I need a yearly BS5839-1 testing certificate. I think they have made a mistake but wont give in, is there a certificate for BS5839-6 which a think is for the system I have.

I find this really annoying as they always move the goal posts regarding certificates. All my systems instructions says is that it needs to be checked by a competent person, not a qualified electrician which I would need for the BS5839-1

I have seen a copy of the BS5839-1 as the council sent me a copy and it has no relevance to my system.

Are the council wrong insisting on this and shall I stand my ground ?

Regards

Liz

 

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I am not aware of any yearly test certificate for either part 1 or 6 systems and yours is definitely a part 6 system Grade D LD3. There are design, installation and commissioning certificates but not test certificate only a logbook for part 1 systems and part 6 grade A system. 

Make it clear to them you have a BS 5839 part 6 system and show them HOUSING – FIRE SAFETY Guidance on fire safety provisionsfor certain types of existing housing page 39 shared housing which is what your premises is and show you only require a part 6 grade D LD3 system. You should then ask them which clause in BS 5839 part 6 requires a  yearly testing certificate. Hope that will do the trick.

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Guest Byron Bayley

While the system in theory might be deemed adequate this would be for a minimum standard. The council are taking into consideration the transient nature of occupiers and the need for ensuring that the system operates correctly.  It also means that you can provide demonstrable evidence that the system has been checked. When you consider the problems relating to a variety of tenants, the risk associated with there lifestyle and personal items (furniture, electrical goods, smokers, etc) and the quality of passive fire precaution and conversions and potential problems on means of escape, it might be worth upgrading the system to one more suitable for the occupiers. This will of course incur cost but not as much as ending up in coroners court. I assume that your mandatory fire risk assessment is up to date and all recommendations carried out.

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A Grade D system has no maintenance regime beyond weekly testing and following manufacturer's instructions (which is usually 6 monthly vacuuming) so it's impossible to certify - the council housing officers need to brush up on the contents of BS5839-6.

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Guest CHRIS

I own a 5 bedroom licensed HMO which has a Grade D alarm system fitted, which the Local Authority are happy

with. I am now being told by a fire safety advisor that I have to have fire doors on all the bedrooms. What do you

advise.

Chris

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Which legislation is the fire safety advisor advising you on The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 or the The Housing Act 2004. In both cases he/she should be using http://privatehousinginformation.co.uk/site/files/LACORS RRO guide 08.pdf for guidance you need to check it out.
 

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Guest DC Property
On 15/07/2018 at 13:06, Guest CHRIS said:

I own a 5 bedroom licensed HMO which has a Grade D alarm system fitted, which the Local Authority are happy

with. I am now being told by a fire safety advisor that I have to have fire doors on all the bedrooms. What do you

advise.

Chris

Hi Chris,
I've been a HMO landlord for about 15 years now and North Herts and Home counties local authorities Environmental Health Depts have always required a "protected fire escape route" from every habitable room and communal area to the exit point  for "HMO"s (licensed or not). This means all doors opening onto said escape route has to have at least 30 minute fire doors. (self-closing with intumescent and smoke seals). This would indeed include each bedroom. I could be wrong but as I understood it, this requirement was made nationwide in regards to fire escape routes in HMO's at some point.

Regards
Derek

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Guest Chris

Hi,

I'm a landlord and found this thread because I have the same problem, the council asking for a yearly fire certificate in an unlicensed HMO. I thought I'd share my experience.

I used Tom's advice and pushed back to the council asking them to show how BS5839 means I'd need a license for my property. Even with the latest revision it looks like a HMO classes like an individual home and comes under Category D, hence not needing a cert. They confirmed that it's not a legal requirement and so not technically necessary.

They also pointed out that we'd have to prove we'd taken "reasonable measures" should a fire happen. I'd advise any landlord to have a fire assessment per property and to test the fire alarms, but as far as I can tell that's as far as you need to go.

 

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Guest John

Hi,  I have a conventional  mains fire alarm system with panel and detectors in my two storey HMO which is unregistered and currently has  four tenants. I am aware that this system is much more than the minimum requirements for this house.  I have a good understanding of the system and do regular checks and tests myself. I have always had a annual service by a company because I thought I had to.  When they come they only do what I do myself  but it is costly.  Do I legally require my system to be serviced by this company and have a certificate issued by them.

Many thanks

John

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Yes, but it sounds like they aren't actually servicing properly if doing no more than you. Firstly they should be servicing it twice a year as minimum, but regardless of that they should be testing every break glass call point, every smoke detector & heat detector using a special test pole with test smoke and a heat source as appropriate and should be checking the batteries with a test meter and replacing every 4 years or so.

There are other bits & pieces they should do, but these are the fundamentals that you should look for them doing.

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