Where do geyser tanks and components go to die?

Where do geyser tanks and components go to die?


By Rory Macnamara

Perhaps the question should really be, how are illegal refurb geysers getting the tanks with or without components attached? To continue engaging in illegal acts someone or something must be feeding the illegal companies which makes that person or company part of the crime.

The expose in the January issue, whilst difficult for the inspector, IOPSA and Plumbing Africa to put together, turns out to be easy when tackling the issue of ‘where do tanks and components go to die?’

This whole issue is almost ‘mafia’ type territory. Denials and obscure responses as to what happens to these tanks abound, but no one knows how these tanks get to these unscrupulous people!

Nonetheless we have had positive responses from some of the professional players in this industry, starting with manufacturers who have no reason to collect old geysers and when some are retuned it would be for their own technical investigative purposes and testing in the case of failed geysers. These are destroyed as per their own company policy. One expects they would hardly want to create illegal competitors in such a competitive market anyhow.

The insurance industry places responsibility for destruction in the hands of the plumbing contractor. Such a contractor has two choices, to send for destruction or leave the old geyser in the roof. (There are views on this latter point, involving the Institute of Timber Construction, but that is for another time.)

“It is good that such organisations exist, and we commend them for their work.”

The destruction companies, which rely on the geyser being sent to them, or them collecting, have a clear process of recording the details, such as type of geyser, operating pressure, date of replacement, component data, serial number and other relevant details. The destruction process aim is to make the tank and components unusable for re-work/refurbishment.

Companies that are appointed by insurance companies to manage replacement and disposal make use of the services of a destruction company who will provide feedback to the appointed company and through them to the insurance company.

It is good that such organisations exist, and we commend them for their work. However, the refurbished geyser market continues to thrive, even advertising through electronic media who take no responsibility for advert content even when it is pointed out to them that such geysers are illegal.

So, the answer is to legislate and create yet another paper structure to combat the few who continue to supply to these illegal manufacturers. To make a destruction certificate compulsory.

We are discussing with the NRCS.

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