OFTEC’s Solid Fuel Offering Takes Off
OFTEC’s solid fuel training and registration offering has enjoyed a successful year (2016) with more training centres coming on board across the country and registration numbers taking off.
The popularity of wood burning stoves has soared over the past 10 years, providing heating technicians with a key opportunity to expand their existing solid fuel business or to enter the solid fuel sector for the first time. To help technicians capitalise on this growth market, OFTEC launched its solid fuel training and registration in April 2015 and has since seen take up go from strength to strength.
Over the past 12 months, registration numbers have tripled and OFTEC anticipates that by mid 2017, the training will be available at around 15 centres throughout the UK. OFTEC’s solid fuel training options cover the installation and maintenance of dry space heating appliances through the OFT15-108(D) course, and also hot water heating systems under OFT15-108(W).
Appetite has further grown for OFT15-108(D) amongst registered chimney sweeps looking to add another dimension to their business by equipping themselves with the professional skills required to tackle any issues with dry stoves detected during the course of their work.
OFTEC training manager David Knipe comments: “Expanding into the solid fuel market has further consolidated OFTEC’s position as one of the leading competent persons scheme providers within the heating sector.
"With sales of wood burning stoves now five times higher than they were 10 years ago, the solid fuel market clearly offers a valuable source of work for heating technicians. “Feedback on both the dry and wet solid fuel heating courses has been extremely positive and solid fuel registration numbers are increasing all the time. “OFTEC has long been recognised for promoting high standards and excellence in heating and there are clear business benefits from being able to prove competence and professionalism to customers by displaying the OFTEC badge.”
New solid fuel guide launched
Amongst the many benefits of OFTEC solid fuel registration is the ability to self-certify installations in accordance with Building Regulations in England, Wales, Isle of Man and the Channel Islands. This avoids the time and expense of going through local authority building control.
Free technical advice is also on offer and as part of OFTEC’s ongoing support for technicians, the trade association has recently produced its Guide to Solid Fuel Heating Installation, Commissioning and Servicing Work. The publication provides all the latest technical advice for those working on solid fuel appliances in both residential and commercial settings and is available from OFTEC’s online shop OFTEC Direct.
David Knipe concludes: “OFTEC’s aim has always been to fully support its registered heating technicians and their businesses. A key part of this is to ensure they are kept up to date with the latest technical information and market developments.
“As the off-gas home energy market becomes more diverse we need to ensure this is reflected in our service offering. That’s why we have expanded into, and continue to strengthen, our solid fuel training and registration to ensure those entering new markets also benefit from the quality, value for money membership services OFTEC has always provided for oil registrants.”
OFTEC’s solid fuel registration is competitively priced and existing OFTEC registered businesses can add solid fuel to their portfolio for as little as 25% of the full cost, with the additional benefit of minimal administration.
For further information, visit www.joinoftec.com
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