Oil heating – becoming an OFTEC registered technician

Oil is a popular fuel because it is very efficient and the latest boilers can quickly pay for themselves after installation. If you install oil heating or cooking equipment, becoming an OFTEC registered technician will demonstrate that you have the expertise that customers are looking for.

Buying a new heating system is a major investment, so householders will want to be sure it is properly installed. This means they are likely to look for competent person registration and qualifications before deciding who to call in.

If you are registered under OFTEC’s scheme for oil heating engineers, your name will appear on the competent person scheme register, listing people with this accreditation. This will also mean you are entitled to wear an identity badge and display a certificate to show customers you are competent, as well as having the right to use the official OFTEC logo.

Installing oil heating and cooking equipment

In areas where mains gas is not an option, oil is used in many homes because of its level of efficiency. Newer condensing oil boilers can ensure large savings on heating bills, amounting to over £220 annually when an inefficient, older oil boiler is replaced. Some modern oil boilers heat water on demand, avoiding the need for a hot water tank – ideal when space is limited.

Oil is also popular for cooking, including traditional ranges, which are known for creating a welcoming atmosphere. Modern ranges have now become more versatile and efficient than in the past. Overall, oil heating and cooking equipment are a very cost-effective and environmentally friendly choice. This, combined with the low oil price, makes it likely that the fuel will continue to be popular.

With more than one million households using oil for heating and cooking in England, Wales and Scotland and another million in Ireland, there is a constant demand for expert installers. OFTEC registration is a way to show you have the right qualifications to install and service this equipment.

Oil registration

If you are a technician installing oil central heating systems and other equipment, you can apply for inclusion in OFTEC’s competent persons register. You need to complete registration forms on our website and provide evidence of your qualifications.

OFTEC offers a range of different scopes of registration and the ones you need depend on the type of equipment you wish to install. The options include installing boilers, cookers, heating equipment and vented or unvented systems supplying hot water, oil storage systems and supply tanks. You can register to commission and service single-stage and multi-stage pressure jet appliances, as well as vaporising burner appliances. OFTEC also provides electrical Part P registration for oil technicians.

Our own OFTEC training courses for oil technicians are available from a network of 90 centres in the UK and the Republic of Ireland. You can arrange to take a course relevant to the type of installation you want to do and you can also combine courses, with some modules being available in more than one course. If you have already trained, assessment is available from the centres.

After completing a course and receiving certification you can apply to be registered with OFTEC. For full registration, technicians need to pass an OFTEC assessment as individuals and also to work for an OFTEC-registered business. This can be your own business, if you are self-employed.

However, registration is not just a one-off. You also need to continue updating your skills and will have to take a re-certification exam every five years, which covers any changes to the industry.

Benefits of registration

Being an OFTEC registered technician has numerous advantages both for you and for your customers. Where applicable, it will mean you can self-certify your work rather than having to arrange building control inspections, which will save your customers both time and money and give them greater confidence. You will also be able to draw on support and technical advice from OFTEC, with access to a technicians’ section within the website, and regular technical updates.

As well as registration for technicians, OFTEC offers non-operative registration for people who don’t work ‘on the tools’. This could include roles such as managing a heating business, someone who works as a specifier or a training services provider. People wishing to register as non-operatives need to have a current oil assessment for the relevant category.

Become an OFTEC Registered Technician – Follow the link for more information.

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