Plumbers to be aware of the responsibility they take on when signing a PIRB Certificate of Compliance (CoC) for plumbing installation on the sale of a house
Consumer’s or property owner’s expectation of a Certificate of Compliance is that all plumbing work within a building complies with regulation and is in working order.
A PIRB Certificate of Compliance (CoC) certifies an installation is compliant in terms of regulation. In most cases this will most likely be on a specific installation and does not necessarily include all plumbing in a building and definitely does not certify that existing plumbing is in working order.
If you have been requested to issue a CoC on a new building or sale of a house take note of the following:
1. If an installation is not complaint do NOT issue a CoC. The consequences of issuing a CoC on a non-compliant plumbing work is the property owner will have legal recourse on the individual that issues and signs the certificate.
2. Notify the property owner that the plumbing work does not comply with the National Building Regulations and specifically what needs to be rectified.
3. Notify the property owner that a CoC is not a confirmation that products are in working order but specifically plumbing work has been installed in compliance with regulation.
4. Notify the property owner that plumbing work that is hidden in walls, floors, ground and concrete roofs are excluded from certificate as they cannot be inspected, unless one has carried out such an inspection such as with a drain camera inspection.
5. The PIRB CoC covers a specific installation and not the entire property plumbing work. We suggest that you download a comprehensive domestic property checklist (can be found under member information on IOPSA website) to guide you in what needs to be inspected and this can be given to a property owner as proof of what is non-complaint.
This will require a plumber to inspect a property comprehensively and they should allow enough time accordingly.