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Gas safety bulletin addresses heating buildings under construction


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November 3, 2017

The manufacturers of gas heating appliances supplied in Canada changed certified installation instructions effective May 1, 2017 to restrict furnaces from being used to heat buildings that are under construction or being renovated.

Alberta Municipal Affairs and industry representatives have developed an information bulletin (G-01-17) to inform builders, contractors, renovators, gasfitters/sheet metal workers and owners of the requirements to ensure the installation and operation of gas heating appliances comply with the manufacturers certified installation instructions and the CSA B149.1 Natural gas and propane installation code.

Gas fired appliances used to supply heat to buildings that are under construction or during renovations are required to be certified for that use. All gas fired appliances shall be installed and operated as per the requirements in the CSA B149.1 Natural gas and propane installation code and the appliance manufactures certified installation instructions.

As of May 1, 2017 the manufacturers of gas heating appliances supplied in Canada, known as residential style furnaces changed their certified installation instructions to restrict these furnaces from being used to heat buildings that are under construction or being renovated.
The ANSI Z21.47/CSA 2.3 Gas-fired central furnaces standard requires the manufacturer’s installation instructions of these units to contain:
• A statement specifying whether the furnace is permitted to be used for heating of buildings or structures under construction.
• If the manufacturer allows such use, the instructions shall specify the conditions that are required for use. Installation must comply with all manufactures installation instructions.
Buildings would be considered under construction/renovation where dusty conditions exist such as those created from installing drywall or textured finishes. A furnace certified to ANSI Z21.47/CSA 2.3 that bears an indication that it is not to be used for heating buildings or structures under construction could be used once drywall, texture and priming of interior surfaces is complete, including clean-up that would be required to minimize dust and debris.
Heating of an area during construction/renovation such as a basement development would require an alternate heat source for those areas so that a furnace with restrictions is not used for construction during the renovation. There will need to be separation of the construction and occupied areas to ensure the furnace serving the completed portions of the home is not exposed to the construction conditions.
The compliance monitoring by the authority having jurisdiction for the gas installations may be completed prior to energizing the furnace or after the completion of the building. It is the owners or owners’ representatives responsibility to secure documentation from contractors that the permanently installed gas furnace in the building was not used to supply heat during the construction/renovation of the building and the installation is in accordance with the manufacturer’s installation instructions. This documentation cannot be used to replace, bypass or exempt the requirements of the Safety Codes Act, permit regulation, related codes, or compliance monitoring by the authority having jurisdiction as applicable.

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