Benchmark is a new code of practice for the installation, commissioning and servicing of domestic heating and hot water products.
It has been started by the Heating and Hot water Council (HHIC) and is another step towards improving standards in the plumbing and heating industry.
HHIC want to promote a consistency amongst installers, promoting a higher standard of work through a “universal” checklist – A benchmark for all installers in the UK.
The Benchmark Code of Practice
Benchmark places responsibilities on both manufacturers and installers.*The purpose is to ensure that customers** are provided with the correct equipment for their needs, that it is installed, commissioned and serviced in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions by competent persons and that it meets the requirements of the appropriate Building Regulations. Installers are required to carry out work in accordance with the following:
Standards of work
- Be competent and qualified to undertake the work required.
- Install, commission, service and use products in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions provided.
- Ensure that where there is responsibility for design work, the installation is correctly sized and fit for purpose.
- Meet the requirements of the appropriate Building Regulations. Where this involves notifiable work be a member of a Competent Persons Scheme or confirm that the customer has notified Local Authority Building Control (LABC), prior to work commencing.
- Complete all relevant sections of the Benchmark Checklist/Service Record when carrying out commissioning or servicing of a product or system.
- Ensure that the product or system is left in a safe condition and, whenever possible, in good working order.
- Highlight to the customer any remedial or improvement work identified during the course of commissioning or servicing work.
- Refer to the manufacturer’s helpline where assistance is needed.
- Report product faults and concerns to the manufacturer in a timely manner.
- Show the customer any identity card that is relevant to the work being carried out prior to commencement or on request.
- Give a full and clear explanation/demonstration of the product or system and its operation to the customer.
- Hand over the manufacturer’s instructions, including the Benchmark Checklist, to the customer on completion of an installation.
- Obtain the customer’s signature, on the Benchmark Checklist, to confirm satisfactory demonstration and receipt of manufacturer’s instructions.
- Advise the customer that regular product servicing is needed, in line with manufacturers’ recommendations, to ensure that safety and efficiency is maintained.
- Respond promptly to calls from a customer following completion of work, providing advice and assistance by phone and, if necessary, visiting the customer.
- Rectify any installation problems at no cost to the customer during the installer’s guarantee period.
* The use of the word “installer” is not limited to installation itself and covers those carrying out installation, commissioning and/or servicing of heating and hot water products, or the use of supporting products (such as water treatment or test equipment).
**Customer includes householders, landlords and tenants.
Visit HHIC for more details on the Benchmark checklists