How to become a gas safe engineer


Becoming a gas safe engineer could open up a raft of new work opportunities while boosting your salary, especially with a shortage of engineers predicted to hit the industry in the next decade.

With the number of retiring engineers expected to outstrip new recruits to the industry over the coming years, by 2029, the total workforce could shrink by as much 30,000, even if engineers continue to retire later than the current average.

While the industry is rightly concerned about such projections, for those tradespeople who are considering becoming gas safe engineers, it could play to their advantage. If you put the training in now, you will reap the rewards sooner rather than later.

Not only are there plenty of work opportunities right now, there are also plenty of choices when it comes to your training, whether you take the traditional route or the modern, fast-track route.

You could be qualified in no time. When that moment comes, don’t forget to take out commercial business insurance, which will cover things like public liability, tools and equipment and legal expenses.

More on commercial insurance later, but let’s get down to what’s required to become a gas safe engineer.

Why become a gas engineer?

If you’re new to the industry, you might assume that you only need your gas safe certification to work on gas boilers – but you need to be suitably qualified to work on any gas appliance including gas cookers and central heating systems in domestic and commercial settings.

There are specific courses that you can take for each appliance, so it pays to have a good idea of where you want to spend your time so that you can map out the career path that you want for yourself.

That’s one of the great things about becoming a gas engineer. You can either become a specialist in a particular appliance or spread your knowledge if you prefer variation. No two days have to be the same if you don’t want them to be. There’s nothing stopping you from taking on additional training at any point in your career, so you can keep setting yourself new challenges.

Also, as we’ve already touched on, the legal hoops that you have to jump through in order to become Gas Safe registered ultimately means that your skills will always be in high demand. So, a career as a gas engineer is a secure one – there will always be work for as long as gas is used domestically and commercially. It’s potentially a job for life, if you want it to be.

The money is good, too. The average salary for a gas engineer is in excess of £35,000 per year, according to Indeed. However, this is likely to increase significantly in the coming years as the shortage of engineers bites the industry.

It’s for these reasons that more than four fifths (86%) of plumbing professionals would recommend it as a career, thanks to an abundance of work and high job satisfaction.
A gas engineer with safety glasses on working in a dark room

Applying to become Gas Safe registered

If you’ve been convinced that becoming Gas Safe registered will catapult your career in the right direction, the next step is to obtain the relevant qualifications before applying to be put on the Gas Safe Register.

The first thing you need to do is find a recognised awarding body through undertaking your training and learn the skills and knowledge necessary to perform gas work safely. The courses provided by these awarding bodies are practical and your competence will be assessed in the final weeks of your attendance. If the trainers are happy with your competence levels at the end of the course, they will send proof to the Gas Safe Register.

However, it’s vital that the training course you choose is industry recognised and meets Gas Safe requirements, otherwise all the hard work will be for nothing.
The most reliable port of call for an up-to-date list of recognised training programmes and qualifications is the EU Skills website.

Once Gas Safe Register receives the nod from the awarding body that you have shown the required level of competency, you are able to apply for registration.
To begin with, you will be bestowed with probationary registration status. This means you can work with gas appliances, but you will need to maintain a record of your completed jobs. Gas Safe Register will require examples of your gas work during your probationary period, which is three months.

If you fail to submit examples of your work during the three months, your entitlement to carry out gas work will be suspended.

Gas Safe Register has also been known to extend the probationary period if it is not completely satisfied with the evidence supplied to them. Remember, you must keep within the categories of registration held by you or any engineers you employ in your company.

Your Gas Safe ID card will display the categories of gas jobs you’re qualified to do. Customers might request to see this prior to you starting work in their home or business.

Once you receive your full Gas Safe licence, it will only last 12 months – so you’ll need to renew one year from the date you registered.
An engineer working on a machine

Protect your work with commercial insurance

It’s essential that you protect yourself and your plumbing business with appropriate commercial insurance.

In fact, all trades need adequate insurance to protect them from things like theft, equipment failure or legal action – all of which can have a big impact on a small business.

At Insurance Choice Commercial, we can combine a range of covers and tailor your policy to suit your exact needs.

Commercial insurance policies through us can include cover for things like:

  • Tools and equipment
  • Public liability
  • Employers’ liability
  • Goods in transit
  • Legal expenses
  • Business equipment
  • Legal expenses

At Insurance Choice Commercial, we’ve been arranging insurance for over 20 years. We can also offer flexible payment solutions for small businesses, so you can make the cost more manageable.

Get a quick quote today.

Policy benefits, features and discounts offered may very between insurance schemes or cover selected and are subject to underwriting criteria. Information contained within this article is accurate at the time of publishing but may be subject to change.