Francine Wickham, Marketing Director at Fernox, looks at the importance of regular training and how installers can benefit from seeking out courses to further their knowledge and understanding of central heating system maintenance.

In recent years, there has been significant progress in educating the market on how to clean and protect central heating systems correctly and the majority of professional installers will be well aware of the need to take a best practice approach to system maintenance. However, with as many as 87% of boiler breakdowns still caused by poor quality system water as a result of contamination caused by corrosion, debris, and sludge build-up in the system, according to British Gas, it is clear that more needs to be done. 

To offer customers a top-quality service and ensure that central heating system health is effectively maintained, installers’ first port of call should always be the latest guidance documents. These will outline the steps that need to be taken to ensure that central heating systems are properly cleaned and protected against the build-up of harmful sludge and debris. 

For plumbing professionals, having an in-depth understanding of guidance like BS 7593:2019 (which provides clear guidance on the preparation, commissioning, and maintenance of domestic central heating and cooling water systems) and the Benchmark Commissioning Checklist (that acts as documented evidence of correct boiler installation and servicing) will help to ensure that they are adopting a best practice approach. However, when faced with complex documentation such as this, it can be difficult to work out what exactly needs to be done in order to comply. 

The good news is that some leading manufacturers now produce easy-to-digest, informative training materials that professionals can use to further their understanding of a range of key industry topics, including the latest guidance documents. They will also delve further into topics like why water treatment is necessary, the importance of cleaning the central heating system and why inhibiting is crucial to maintain central heating system health and efficiency. 

Reliable manufacturers will also provide an overview of their product portfolio and when each product should be used – including how the latest innovations can assist with quick and easy compliance to BS 7593:2019 and the Benchmark Commissioning Checklist. 

This might sound like a lot of information to take in, but the Fernox online training module only takes 20 minutes to complete, for example. It is therefore a much faster way of learning about the latest guidance – which means that it can be easily fitted into the working day and installers do not need to take time out to complete the training. With our module, on completion there is an opportunity to take a water treatment quiz – allowing participants to formalise their knowledge and receive a downloadable certificate upon successful completion (based upon achieving a minimum of 70% of the questions answered correctly). 

This certificate can be used to demonstrate to customers that installers are committed to ensuring they are up-to-date with the latest legislation, techniques, and modern technology available. It also shows that they have the in-depth knowledge to be able to service their system and provide solutions that will keep the system working issue-free and at optimum efficiency. 

Finally, when choosing which training modules to complete, make sure you look to reputable sources – such as the industry’s leading manufacturers – and that they are associated with industry bodies, as this shows that they are dedicated to maintaining high industry standards and top-quality working practices. 

For instance, Fernox works closely with Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering to promote professionalism across the industry and ensure that installers fully understand what it means to adopt a best practice approach.

At every stage of their career, installers should ensure that they are up to speed with the latest industry standards and innovations that can help them to offer customers a top-quality service in the most efficient way.