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Sea&Sand

What is this vent for ?

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Posted (edited)

Bailey Pegasus GT 65 Ancona 2013

 

There is a cut-out in the trim panel in front of the Thetford  Caprice MK 111 cooker at floor level, this is below the oven housing and inside the glass door below the oven.

 

I have noticed a black dirty/sooty mark on the carpet immediately in front of said cut-out, I hope the pics will explain.

 

What is this cut-out for?  Any ideas why dirt\sooty material is gathering on the carpet?

 

I accept that there is some dirt and dust inside this compartment, my bad :blush:, I will clean that.

 

 

 

Pic 1 shows the interior of the compartment space, there is nothing else in here other than what is shown in the picture.

 

On pic 2 you can see that the plastic cover for the vent inside the compartment is not fitted close to the trim panel, I am guessing bad workmanship.

 

On pic 3 the carpet has become dirty\sooty coloured in front of the cut-out, I am convinced that the dirt is being blown up through the floor of the caravan where the vent exits to the outside underneath the floor.    ( I have cleaned the carpet so the dirt\sooty area is not shown in the pic).

 

 

 

Any help much appreciated as always.

inside the cupboard.jpg

View of vent inside cupboard.jpg

The fron vent.png

Edited by Sea&Sand

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It would seem to be a vent to the outside, although it seems a strange place to have it.

My Lunar has a vent in that cupboard, but it is a round one directly in the floor with a sign saying “do not block this vent”. However, no dirt or soot comes up through it.

Have you looked underneath the van to see why dirt or soot might be coming up through yours.

 

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Thank you hp100425ev, I will get underneath the caravan tomorrow and take some pics.

 

Cheers mate.

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It is an air inlet vent to feed air supply to the cooker. They are fitted to be compliant with gas regulations.

 

Having said that most caravans are a leaky as a sieve for air, so if it is causing a draught stuffing it with a piece of sponge will do no harm.

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2 minutes ago, Woodentop said:

so if it is causing a draught stuffing it with a piece of sponge will do no harm.

Never, ever block in any way a vent to a gas appliance.

The above quote is totally irresponsible and should be ignored.

 

That vent allows combustion air into the burner area to allow the cooker to operate SAFELY.

 

If I were to find any vent or drop hole blocked deliberately I would have no option but to report the owner through the RIDDOR system(which could and does result in heavy fines and the possibility of a prison sentence) and would have no hesitation in doing so.

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The mess may not have been soot. At the end of June/beginning of July we were on site near Hayle. There were warm winds on one day and a black gritty dust was blown into the caravan through a vent and there was dust on the cars

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2 hours ago, Brecon said:

Never, ever block in any way a vent to a gas appliance.

The above quote is totally irresponsible and should be ignored.

 

That vent allows combustion air into the burner area to allow the cooker to operate SAFELY.

 

If I were to find any vent or drop hole blocked deliberately I would have no option but to report the owner through the RIDDOR system(which could and does result in heavy fines and the possibility of a prison sentence) and would have no hesitation in doing so.

 

Not a problem when there is another vent underneath the oven! It baffles me why they even fit this one!

 

Oh, and don't try the RIDDOR route - it only affects employers and places of work. Before retirement I was a H&S Supervisor grade.......

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Brecon said:

If I were to find any vent or drop hole blocked deliberately I would have no option but to report the owner through the RIDDOR system(which could and does result in heavy fines and the possibility of a prison sentence) and would have no hesitation in doing so.

RIDDOR - Reporting of Injuries, Disease and Dangerous Occurences

 

I think you may be confusing legislation, as has been said, it is for the reporting of injuries etc at work

 

Edited by reluctant

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1 hour ago, Brecon said:

If I were to find any vent or drop hole blocked deliberately I would have no option but to report the owner through the RIDDOR system(which could and does result in heavy fines and the possibility of a prison sentence) and would have no hesitation in doing so.

I see where you are coming from:

 

If you are a gas engineer registered with the Gas Safe Register, you or your employer must provide details of any gas fittings, including appliances and flues or ventilation used with the appliances, that you consider to be dangerous, to such an extent that people could die, be rendered unconscious or need to be taken to hospital, because the design, construction, installation, modification or incorrect servicing could result in:

an accidental leakage of gas;

incomplete combustion of gas or ;

inadequate removal of products of the combustion of gas.

Fittings that are dangerous solely due to lack of maintenance are not reportable

 

However, I think that you would be overstepping the mark there.  RIDDOR, is I believe for workplace incidents.

 

If you consider the caravan as your workplace, then you are employed to make sure that it is safe and the problem will be solved.

 

The blocking of a vent could be dangerous, but only if the cooker is used (ours has not been used in two years, but nothing is blocked).

 

To leave it blocked, would be lack of servicing and lack of servicing is not reportable.

 

Best practice would be to inform the owner of your finding and cease work on the caravan gas system until the blockage was removed either by the customer, or by yourself under direction of the customer and the incident recorded.

 

To try to use RIDDOR to punish an ill informed customer, could soon lose you all your customers.

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15 minutes ago, Woodentop said:

Not a problem when there is another vent underneath the oven! It baffles me why they even fit this one!

It is fitted because the under cooker "vent" as you call it is a gas drop hole and does not allow enough combustion air into the burner area of the cooker causing the cooker to run out of suitable combustion air.

 

17 minutes ago, Woodentop said:

Oh, and don't try the RIDDOR route - it only affects employers and places of work. Before retirement I was a H&S Supervisor grade..

So you are, or were a Gas Safe Registered engineer? and are you fully up to date with the current regulations.

If I am working on a caravan ,that is my workplace and I have no option but to report a dangerous occurrence, which a deliberately blocked vent to a gas appliance is.

 

14 minutes ago, reluctant said:

I think you may be confusing legislation, as has been said, it is for the reporting of injuries etc at work

I am not confusing anything as I deal with Gas Regulations for LPG on a daily basis and as I have said, a van I am working on is "my place of work"

 

13 minutes ago, Wunny said:

To try to use RIDDOR to punish an ill informed customer, could soon lose you all your customers.

To use the RIDDOR system does not automatically result in action by them being taken, but it does alert them to possible areas that need looking at and issuing guidance.

I would certainly prefer to lose a customer who was not happy but still alive, rather than lose one to death because of ill informed "advice" from people.

 

 

Of course advice would be given to a customer but at the end of the day my job is to ensure the safety of the person I am working for, and their family.

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Our caravan has quite a few floor level vents (as well as the gas drop vents in the floor) and they are not all just for if the cooker is being used but to provide general ventilation. They will have been designed for when it is not windy but when the wind does blow they can give bad draughts so in these times we might put a sock in one or two and then remove them when the wind dies down. When using the oven/hob I open windows to give ventilation plus there is the CO alarm.

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The black plastic cover is, I believe, there to direct the vent from the slot to holes beneath it to the underside of the van.  Therefore I believe it should be pushed against the back of the panel.

 

If I am correct, this may be why it is not operating as expected,  It may also be responsible for the carpet marking.

 

John

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Another thought, the soot could be from your car exhaust when towing.

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Just had a read of our caravan handbook and it says when using the cooker it is essential to provide additional ventilation by such as opening a window near the cooker - which implies the fixed vents are not enough when using the cooker.  As such trying to use RIDDOR against somebody for blocking a fixed vent would not get very far and it is far better to educate the user that a window or door should be opened when the cooker is to be used.

 

The handbook says the high (roof) and low level vents are to BSEN 721 which I could not find details of other than an old topic giving the area of the vents against the floor area. https://www.practicalcaravan.com/forum/general/1203-floor-vents

 

Copied from the link:

BS/EN721/1999 as ammended 2004,(Leisure Accommodation Vehicles Safety Ventilation Requirements), states; minimum low level ventilation for vans in this case with 5 to 10 square metres of floor space is 1500sq mm or in real terms an opening of 100x15mm which is but a fraction of the standard door vents capacity. High level ventilation requires more and in this case it is 10,000sq mm which should be taken care of by the permanent ventilation of one closed rooflight which is of the order of 12000mm square even with the blind shut.

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Posted (edited)
12 minutes ago, Paul1957 said:

As such trying to use RIDDOR against somebody

It is not "trying to use RIDDOR against someone", it is alerting the gas safety people to potentially dangerous situations.

 

However, if the RIDDOR people deem an incident serious enough they have serious powers to deal with the problem.

 

As a Gas Safe engineer I have a legal duty to report any dangerous practices  that I find in the course of my work,,,simple .

 

It is good that you have read the instruction book for your van, sadly many do not and that is when things can go wrong.

Edited by Brecon
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10 hours ago, Brecon said:

It is not "trying to use RIDDOR against someone", it is alerting the gas safety people to potentially dangerous situations.

 

However, if the RIDDOR people deem an incident serious enough they have serious powers to deal with the problem.

 

As a Gas Safe engineer I have a legal duty to report any dangerous practices  that I find in the course of my work,,,simple .

 

It is good that you have read the instruction book for your van, sadly many do not and that is when things can go wrong.

 

Threatening someone by reporting them is as over the top as you can go!

 

What is wrong with informing the offender of the "fault" and then giving them the opportunity to correct it, if that means pulling out a bit of foam or removing a strip of gaffer tape then what's wrong with that.

 

Easily resolved, the offender is educated to the error of their ways and you go home a happy boy knowing you have potentially saved someone's life.

 

As a gas safety engineer you have a legal duty to"Identify" dangerous practices, and if possible resolve them i it is within your ability, without cost if it is a simple as removing a piece of foam, or with cost if it involves parts and or labour, thelast resort is to report the issue.

 

For example, in bygone years I was a time served apprentice and 10 years a British Gas engineer, we would go into a property to service or repair a gas appliance, as part of the visit we would alway check air vents, if we saw one blocked up either with gaffer tape or cardboard taped over it we would tell the owner/tenant it was against regs and the consequences, we would then remove the offending blockage, you left the property knowing full well that they would cover it over once you had got to the end of the street, no different to a caravan owner, reporting them would do no good, you just had to record it on the job card.

 

If they had done a permanent job on it such as wall papering over it or removing it completely and plastering over it, we would isolate the gas appliance in the room and fit a warning label, which would only be removed once the permanent ventilation had been restored.

 

Yes I know it was in bygone years but it is about being reasonable and having that rare commodity call common sense, and taking "appropriate" action.

 

I have to ask, do you ring the police if you see someone parked on the kerb blocking a pavement, or the HSE if you see someone up a ladder without another person"footing" it?

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11 minutes ago, Grandpa Steve said:

as part of the visit we would alway check air vents, if we saw one blocked up either with gaffer tape or cardboard taped over it we would tell the owner/tenant it was against regs and the consequences, we would then remove the offending blockage,

 

Years ago my sister had a decorative coal effect gas fire fitted.  I think they are banned now as they are inefficient.  A couple of years later their gas was cut off to replace mains.  When it was turned back on each house was inspected.  Her house was condemned as there was insufficient ventilation.  Nothing blocked, just non existent.  She was lectured and made to feel bad.

 

On checking her paperwork it turned out that it was the gas supplier themselves who had fitted the fire.  She made sure they were suitably embarrassed and did the necessary correction immediately.

 

John

 

 

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11 minutes ago, JCloughie said:

Years ago my sister had a decorative coal effect gas fire fitted.  I think they are banned now as they are inefficient.  A couple of years later their gas was cut off to replace mains.  When it was turned back on each house was inspected.  Her house was condemned as there was insufficient ventilation.  Nothing blocked, just non existent.  She was lectured and made to feel bad.

 

On checking her paperwork it turned out that it was the gas supplier themselves who had fitted the fire.  She made sure they were suitably embarrassed and did the necessary correction immediately.

 

John

 

In my time with British Gas regulations constantly changed, it was once acceptable to have indirect ventilation, so you could put a vent in a floor provided the underfloor space had air vents to the outside, you could vent one room into another provided the other room had vents to the outside.

 

So when the decorative fire was  fitted i may have been accepted based on gas consumption and output to not require any ventilation, but then regs changed and any and all non flued and open flued appliances had to be vented to the outside.

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Ask yourself 1 question, "if a manufacturer has taken the time & cost to fit the vent into the floor/side panel why would they have done that if they weren't required by law or the manufacturer of any fitted appliances insisted on certain fixed ventilation to allow efficient & safe use of their product". The cutting of vent holes in which to fit any type of cover may only cost them 10p per van, but over 4/5/6 thousand units per year over x number of years eventually adds up, if they didn't need to do it they wouldn't do it ! Never block any vent ever, ever, ever, it has a purpose & might just save your life.

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Wow.  O wow.  Talk about jumping to conclusions and flimsy evidence.

 

I have a P2 rimini and under my cooker and also under the nearside single bed near the washroom door, are these same floor vent cover-deflectors.  https://www.primaleisure.com/product/1130037

 

The one pictured looks to have been poorly fitted as mine are more up against the wall-board trim and would probably let almost no air passage directly into the compartments from outside.  They cover (and deflect air passage) from vermin-proof under-floor vent holes into the habitation space.  

 

In certain wind directions they can let a very chill draught into the habitation space and I've no worries about fitting something to stop that inside the plastic deflector!  I use a strip of pipe-lagging foam.  {I remove them for  storage ventilation reasons, though}.  That still allows air from the room to enter the compartments from the (small) gaps around the deflectors and the slightly over-sized cutout.  There's plenty of other ventilation in a caravan to allow for cooking combustion (and a CO alarm just in case?)!

 

@Brecon Thetfords Installation Manual for the Caprice (as an example) makes no mention of any under -oven ventilation being required. Just a gas drop hole. https://www.thetford-europe.com/gb/products/cooking-appliances/cookers/caprice-gas-only-lower-door   I really, really doubt that this pictured vent-deflection-cover is for the purpose you think it is.  (Why do I have one in the bedroom at the rear if so?)

 

 

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Posted (edited)

Yes but Elddis are saying when using the gas cooker, a window has to be opened to provide the necessary ventilation. So to report somebody you would have to report they did not open a window. Also the technician doing the cooker service should also know to open a window or the door so they are not at risk of CO poisoning.

 

A rear bedroom floor vent is needed if there is a door between the bedroom and the other end of the caravan where there is a floor vent.

Edited by Paul1957

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5 minutes ago, Rodders53 said:

Wow.  O wow.  Talk about jumping to conclusions and flimsy evidence.

 

I have a P2 rimini and under my cooker and also under the nearside single bed near the washroom door, are these same floor vent cover-deflectors.  https://www.primaleisure.com/product/1130037

 

The one pictured looks to have been poorly fitted as mine are more up against the wall-board trim and would probably let almost no air passage directly into the compartments from outside.  They cover (and deflect air passage) from vermin-proof under-floor vent holes into the habitation space.  

 

In certain wind directions they can let a very chill draught into the habitation space and I've no worries about fitting something to stop that inside the plastic deflector!  I use a strip of pipe-lagging foam.  {I remove them for  storage ventilation reasons, though}.  That still allows air from the room to enter the compartments from the (small) gaps around the deflectors and the slightly over-sized cutout.  There's plenty of other ventilation in a caravan to allow for cooking combustion (and a CO alarm just in case?)!

 

@Brecon Thetfords Installation Manual for the Caprice (as an example) makes no mention of any under -oven ventilation being required. Just a gas drop hole. https://www.thetford-europe.com/gb/products/cooking-appliances/cookers/caprice-gas-only-lower-door   I really, really doubt that this pictured vent-deflection-cover is for the purpose you think it is.  (Why do I have one in the bedroom at the rear if so?)

 

 

Just out of interest do you keep cooking pans or saucepans under your oven ?

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1 minute ago, Flinty said:

Just out of interest do you keep cooking pans or saucepans under your oven ?

Why?

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2 minutes ago, Rodders53 said:

Why?

So is that a yes, no, or not sure what's coming here so I will avoid answering ?

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1 minute ago, Flinty said:

So is that a yes, no, or not sure what's coming here so I will avoid answering ?

One of the three.

My pan storage solution is of no consequence to this thread.

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