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  • OPSO Changeover Valve

    So what is an OPSO Changeover Valve?

    LPG Gas bottle regulators, IE the Changeover valve, should now incorporate an OPSO devise it protects the gas system from overpressure.

    It is now a requirement for most installations in residential and habitable properties throughout the United Kingdom.

    It includes static mobile homes, holiday chalets, Log cabins, all residential park homes and any property using LPG.

    The OPSO changeover valve regulator reduces the gas outlet pressure to a safe level.

    It ensures that any gas appliances are used without putting the gas users in any form of danger.

    There are two types of regulators traditionally fitted to most static mobile homes and holiday lets. 

    The first one is a single regulator that attaches directly to a single gas bottle it has a flexible hose connecting from the regulator to the fixed gas pipework of the property. 

    Usually, this type of regulator is for just one appliance, something like a gas hob.

    Up until recently these types of regulators did not have the OPSO function built-in.

    They should now be replaced with the new model that does have the OPSO feature built in.

    The second type is the changeover valve IE Regulator that allows more than one gas bottle to be connected at a time. 

    You can connect up to a maximum of four gas bottles at any one time.

    This type of regulator draws the gas from one side of the changeover valve.

    When one side becomes empty it automatically switches to the reserve bottle/s so that you don’t run out of gas.

    Some changeover valves are classed as manual changeovers where the user has to change from one set of bottles to the other manually.

    These types of regulators are mostly fitted to the side of the mobile homes and connected to the gas bottles by short hoses known as pigtails.

    All of these changeover valves now come with OPSO built-in as required by United Kingdom gas regulations.

    If you are going to buy a new changeover valve, ensure it has a built-in OPSO, the shop you are buying from may try to sell you the old style valve to clear their old stock.

    Should buy the old style changeover valve, you will not be able to have it installed legally.

    If you have recently had a new changeover valve fitted, it’s important that you know which model you have. 

    Gas bottle regulators suitable for touring motorhomes are different from the ones required for static mobile homes and residential park homes.

    Why is an OPSO so important?

    If a regulator has a malfunction or fails, the pressure could build up and exceed a set safety point, the (OPSO) Over-Pressure Shut-Off device cuts in and shuts off the gas flow.

    If the OPSO cuts in while using your gas appliances, contact a local LPG Gas Safe Registered engineer to come and check the valve.

    The OPSO is a safety device if it activates, it means something may be wrong.

    It is about Preventing excessive gas pressure from entering the property and all of your gas appliances. 

    The OPSO changeover valve is a crucial piece of safety equipment on a static mobile home, holiday lodge in fact, anywhere an LPG gas supply is used.

    This is why owners of such properties should regularly inspect their gas bottle changeover valve regulators for signs of damage or wear.

    This is especially important if the property is close to the sea, the salt air can lessen the life of regulators and hose pipes.

    Only ever have them replaced by a qualified and registered LPG Gas Safe Installer. 

    All regulators and changeover valves should be replaced every ten years, sooner if they show signs of any damage.

    Any LPG hose pipe that is used to supply gas to an appliance, and the pigtails that connect to the gas bottles, should be changed every five years.

    All regulators and hose pipes have a date stamp on them, this is normally the production date.

    If the changeover valve or any regulator are not used and maintained correctly or are not fitted with a built-in OPSO device, should they fail gas at very high pressure could pass to the equipment or appliance?

    If this happens, it can cause serious incidents. 

    We always recommend that all LPG gas installations big, or small

     are fitted with an OPSO device for own your protection.

    Helping our customers to use their LPG gas bottles safely is of utmost importance to us, which is why we would highly recommend Liquid Gas UK’s new guidance on regulators. 

    It includes information on how all owners of mobile homes and holiday lodges can check if their regulator is the correct type, is still within its service life.

    It also describes how to use them and keep them in a safe condition while enjoying the benefits of LPG during the summer season and all year round.

    For more information, visit Liquid Gas UK Customer Guidance sheet 39.

    If you are unsure of the condition of your LPG gas appliances and installation, you should seek professional advice from a suitably LPG qualified gas safe registered engineer.

    You can find an LPG registered engineer from the Gas Safe Website.

    Once on the site, you enter your postcode and you should receive details of three companies local to you.