I currently charge £230 for a Boat Safety Examination. This includes travel within 40 minutes of Banbury and the certificate fee. I may charge a little more for additional travel if you are outside of my usual area.
Should there be several boats in close proximity that can all be examined on the same day, there may be a small discount.
40 minutes from Banbury includes Oxford, Warwick, Northampton, Leamington, Startford-upon-Avon, Coventry, Braunston, Napton, Stoke Bruerne, Lechlade.
This is on a case by case basis. For very local boats, I am unlikely to charge. If you require me to retest on a specific time and date, there will be a charge. If I can retest small items when I am already in the area then I will not charge for a retest.
Don't forget, a retest must be done within 3 months of the initial examination. Otherwise, I have to perform a full examination at full cost again.
The BSS examination will normally take between 1.5 and 2 hours. For smaller boats, it can sometimes be quicker, for larger boats it may take a little longer. I would advise allowing 3 hours for safety.
Yes, in general, I will travel to your boat. I do need somewhere to park my vehicle and although I don't mind walking a short way on the towpath, I may be less pleased to do your examination if I have to walk more than 15 minutes along the towpath.
This only makes a difference if you have an installed gas system on your boat as it changes who can test your gas system. Please see the following flow chart:
This question is slightly odd and causes some confusion. If a boat is used as a main, primary or sole residence by anybody, then it falls into the scope of the Gas Safety (Installation & Use) Regulations (GSIUR). This is a set of rules that governs gas installations, testing and repair almost anywhere in the UK. To work on a boat that is within the scope of GSIUR, requires the person to be Gas Safe Registered for LPG on Boats.
How does this affect a BSS Examiner? Well, the gas tightness test that we do using a Manometer on a test point is considered 'work' and hence requires the Examiner to be Gas Safe Registered. However, using a Bubble Tester is not considered work, so does not require the BSS Examiner to be Gas Safe Registered.
With regard to the Boat Safety Scheme, the boat owner is asked to declare this. On my Online Booking Form, you will find a question that asks if your boat is used "solely or primarily for domestic or residential purposes". If you tick yes, I cannot examine your boat without a Gas Safe Registered (for boats) engineer being present. If you tick no, this is your declaration to me that the boat is outside the scope of GSIUR. If I arrive at a boat that really does look like someone's home, I may well ask you to sign a paper declaration too.
No. There is absolutely no requirement to have a Bubble Tester fitted to your boat, but it may limit which BSS Examiners you can ask to do your inspection. I will add that the majority of BSS Examiners are not Gas Safe Registered, myself included. Fitting a Bubble Tester has the added benefit that the boat owner can test the integrity of their gas system themselves, at a far more regular interval than the 4 yearly Boat Safety Scheme Certificate Examination.
- Have available any manufacturer's documentation, statements or certificates needed to demonstrate compliance where it cannot be determined by the Checking procedures
- Ensure that the boat is generally tidy and accessible and that all engine spaces, battery boxes, stoves and gas lockers are clear of any unnecessary items.
- Ensure that all water, gas, and electrical systems will be in working order. I will need to determine what gas appliances are on board, if there is a water heater that will require a flue spillage test. The owner must ensure that there are sufficient quantities of water, battery power and LPG present to enable the examination to be completed.
- Prepare anything which I need to see that requires:
- the removal with tools of any panel, hatch or structure or
- that is normally kept in locked lockers, boxes, or compartments is available for examination
- For electric boats, ensure that the charging lead is available for examination
- For steam-powered boats, ensure the inspection certificate and current insurance policy or certificate are available for Examination.
- Ensure that your fire extinguishers are in good condition, not showing in the red on the gauge and are suitably located in the boat.
There is a really good preperation check list on the Boat Safety Scheme website. Click Here.
At the time of examination, yes, the locker or housing must be clear of items. This is because I will need to inspect the locker or housing fully and I need complete access to the gas cylinders, regulators and pipework. Nothing should be stored in your gas locker that is likely to cause damage to it, the cylinders, regulators or pipework.
Many boats do not pass the BSS Examination first time. In fact, many boats that have passed, unchanged, in previous years may fail. The BSS Examination Checking Procedures (ECP's) do change a little from time to time, but most failures are either due to the deterioration of an item or a previous BSS examiner having missed an existing failure. I never set out to fail boats. I have been trained to examine in a fair and consistent manner and will do my best to ensure that any boat that meets the current ECP standards will pass.
Should your boat fail, I will explain why at the end of the examination. This will be followed by a written report within 48 hours. I can't directly advise on how to make a failure compliant, but I can advise on what the compliance options are and I will always try to recommend a marine tradesman to help you if required.
Once any items that have not passed are corrected, I will attend to re-examine your boat. If this is within 3 months of the initial examination, I only need to re-examine the items that did not pass the first time.
Yes! You can have your boat examined up to 2 months in advance of your current BSS Certificate expiry date. This is to allow time to book your examiner and in the case that anything does not pass, allows time for this to be rectified. You do not 'loose' 2 months from your Certficiate expiry date. A successful pass result allows me to post date your new Certificate to have an expiry date 4 years after your current Certificate expires.
By choosing me to do your Boat Safety Certificate, you can be assured that your boat will be examined a fair, considerate and friendly manner. I have passed through the latest training schemes and can apply the examination checking procedures as they were designed to be applied.
I do not generally do repair work, so have no interest in failing your boat to create more work for myself.
As a boater, I understand what it is like to have a BSS examination and I try work in a calm and respectful manner,
If your boat does not pass, I will give clear feedback at the end, alongside advice on any possible compliance options.
I never expect a hot drink, but if you're offering I drink coffee in the morning and tea after lunch. Always with milk, but no sugar.
Yes, please do. You can reach me by phone or email. Just click on the 'Contact Me' button at the top of your screen.
Alternatively, the Boat Safety Scheme website has lots of information and advice for boat owners who need to book an examination. Click Here