Kitchen fitters are not legally required to have any qualifications. There are relevant qualifications that you may wish to look for when choosing a kitchen fitter. For example, there are NVQs and City and Guilds certifications available. These qualifications prove that tradespeople have up to date knowledge. It also demonstrates that they have the skills to deliver a high quality installation.
However, many kitchen installers do not have these qualifications and still carry out high quality kitchen installations. This is especially true for experienced tradespeople who may have trained in the industry before these qualifications became popular. If you’re not sure about a tradesperson, base your decision on examples of their previous work as well as their qualifications.
Make sure that a certified electrician or Gas Safe-registered engineer carries out any electrical or gas work. There are several electrical certification schemes available.
There is a variety of qualifications that are relevant to kitchen fitting. The NVQ in Fitted Interiors is a qualification which demonstrates that the tradesperson is capable of various construction jobs. For example, installing fitted furniture and undertaking plumbing work. The City and Guilds 6219 for Construction Skills is a similar qualification which offers certification for general skills such as joinery, tiling and plastering.
There are also specific qualifications in place for different aspects of kitchen installation. For example, City and Guilds 6806 for Carpentry and Joinery offers a certification for the joinery aspect of kitchen fitting.
Also, City and Guilds 6810 for Wall and Floor Tiling certifies that the tradesperson is capable of tiling to a high standard. Tiling is an area of kitchen fitting where poor quality work will be very obvious. Using a certified tiler can give homeowners peace of mind that they will do the work properly.
A certified electrician should carry out all electrical work. Several different competent persons schemes carry out certification for electricians. NAPIT is one example of a certification body. It’s important that all the electrical work in your kitchen is safe and meets building regulations. The best way to make sure of this is to use a certified electrician.
If your kitchen installation requires the addition of a new circuit, this is notifiable work. This means you will need to use a certified electrician to carry out the work. If you do not, the local authority will need to come out and inspect the work. There is usually a charge for the inspection.
If there is gas work required as part of your kitchen installation this should only be carried out by a certified gas engineer. For example, if you need to fit a gas hob, or alter the gas pipework. You can use the Gas Safe Register to check that gas engineers are registered.
There are no legal qualifications for kitchen installers. Therefore, it’s important to be sure that the installer has carried out good quality work in the past. You should ask to see examples of their previous work.