What you need to know when commissioning Type B gas appliances

Gas technicians are required to assess gas appliances using emissions
analysers before approving commercial flue equipment for use.

These inspections are very detailed and mandated by Australian regulatory
authorities who require the appliances to pass a stringent set of safety
requirements before they can be implemented.

Testo reviews some of the most important standards that gas appliance
commissioners are required to know during inspections.

Defining a Type B gas
appliance

Australian Gas Networks defines Type A gas appliances as light
commercial and domestic items such as space heaters, cookers, catering
equipment, water heaters and outdoor grills. These products receive approval
badges from the Australian Gas Association.

Type B gas appliances, as identified by the Western Australia Department
of Commerce, include any machine that supports commercial or industrial
operations. These include calciners, bake ovens, incinerators, dry-out burners,
hot-water boilers and process kilns. The state further specifies that a Type B
appliance has a maximum hourly input rate exceeding 10 megajoules.

Not every emissions tester is suited for Type B appliances. While industrial
flue gas analysers will certainly get the job done, there are other
products that are best suited for analysing catering equipment and restaurant
cookers, for example.

Navigating legislation

The Gas Act 1997’s Gas Regulations 2012 expansion included a number of
requirements for those manufacturing, installing and approving Type B
equipment. Division 3 of Part 9 repeatedly cited Australian Standard
3814 (AS 3814) for commissioning Type B appliances.

The purpose of AS 3814, which was implemented by the Standards Australia
Committee, is to define systematic, minimum requirements for the secure
operation of industrial gas application. The standard specifically explains how
professionals can prevent fire hazards, explosions and other such accidents
associated with fuel-based processes; preclude injury to individuals or assets;
and implement safe practices into a consistent regimen.

One provision, for instance, states that an inspector, when
commissioning an appliance, is required to ensure that several items are
installed and operated normally. All controls, interlocks, limit devices, flame
safeguard components and safety shut-off systems must be accounted for and
approved.

However, since every appliance is not designed the same, each machine
must abide by its own set of rules. For example, on all incinerators and
cremators with both primary and secondary burners, the primary burner must be
interlocked to prohibit ignition and operation unless the secondary burner is
on. Alternatively, the secondary combustion chamber must have reached a
temperature of 750°C.

Western Australia also outlined the responsibilities of these inspectors
who commissioned the appliances. For the record, the commissioner can be the
same person who actually installed the appliance or another individual who has
received accreditation as an industrial gas equipment commissioner.

In addition to verifying that the appliance in question has all the
necessary safety mechanisms, the commissioner must request gas from the firm
supplying the resource. This is to gauge how the appliance functions over a
certain period of time (normally 28 days). Once the inspection is
complete, the gas commissioner sends a notice of completion within 48 hours of
the assessment to the gas supplier and the party that applied for
approval.

Without these standards, industrial gas
application manufacturers and users wouldn’t have a clear point of reference to
deduce what is safe and what isn’t. Thanks to the highly accurate digital
gas analysers on the market, technicians throughout Australia can
accurately determine the safety of gas appliances.

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