Specifying the right radiator for your project
Look for the MARC logo or ask for an independent test certificate Declaration of Performance that has been done by an accredited body (see detail below).
Buying radiators, the facts
It is the LAW that radiators and convectors installed in heating systems in buildings conform to the European Standard BS-EN442. Products that conform will have a ‘CE’ mark.
By placing the CE marking on a product a manufacturer is declaring, on his sole responsibility, conformity with all of the legal requirements to achieve CE marking. The manufacturer is thus ensuring validity for that product to be sold throughout the European Economic Area.
This legislation is designed to ensure heating engineers, specifiers, architects and consumers alike can fairly compare the heat outputs of one radiator against another, so that they can choose the right fit for their project.
ALL products MUST be independently tested BY LAW in aa accredited testing laboratory.
What do I need to know?
Unfortunately, there are some companies out there who “claim” EN442 compliance for the radiators they are selling, either through ignorance, or deliberate deception.
This leaves you potentially specifying radiators for projects that may not be suitable for the rooms they are planned for, subsequently leaving you’re clients cold and out of pocket as they have to turn the heating up to get the desired room temperature.
What to look out for
Many brands place a CE mark on their products, claiming that the products are safe for the end-customer, and sell them within the EU zone. But that's not always the case. Sometimes the CE mark you can see on a product can be fake.
There are some test certificates on the market which may seem genuine but are not fit for purpose.
How do I know if a product is genuine?
Any product with a CE mark should have a declaration of performance, which may be paper, on the packaging or via a website. This should include key information amongst which is the “notified body’s” (testing laboratory’s) 4 digit number.
A notified body, is an organisation that has been designated to assess the conformity of certain products, before being placed on the market, with the applicable essential technical requirements.
Current notified bodies for Radiators are;
Notified body No.
Name of notified body & address
Who is responsible?
It is the legal responsibility of all resellers to ensure all products conform. A Reseller could be a contractor, merchant, architect or an M&E specialist and if you supply it to a client, then technically you are responsible for ensuring the products have been properly tested and certified.
At clyderadiators.co.uk we are proud of our products’ MARC affiliation, and, as most of our products are of Italian design and manufacture we use Politecnico De Milano for all our testing.
Unfortunately, there are many products on the market which have either not been tested or have been tested in Laboratories that are NOT official “notified bodies”, and as such, they are NOT compliant with the law. You risk specifying products that are not fit for purpose.
If you challenge a seller of radiators – and you should ask for test certificates, and the reseller makes comments such as “it doesn’t matter”, or “it is still a valid test certificate”, or even “nobody polices it”, then buyer beware. You will probably end up with a product that is not fit for purpose.
Do EU rules still apply?
At present, after our separation from the EU, the legislation remains the same. It is simply written into UK law, irrespective of our removal from the EU.
Consumer protection remains a top priority for the government.
Cost of a non genuine product
It will not adequately heat the space it was purchased to do
In order to heat the room, it will be necessary to run the boiler at higher temperatures than would have been necessary
This will burn more fuel and in turn create more CO2 emissions
Burning more fuel will increase heating costs
This may affect the life cycle of the boiler or heat source
Protecting End Users
But, given so many products out there “flout” the law, what can I do to ensure the product I am buying is above board and complies?
Our advice? Look out for MARC membership! All members of MARC must provide proof of product performance (CE marking), together with test certificates from a “notified body” as part of our membership criteria.
MARC members are committed to being at the forefront of change. Members are proud of their brand and what it stands for. Our aim is to work with every business involved in the manufacturing and supply chain of radiator and convector products.
For more information about MARC please visit www.marcuk.com