Toby’s video diary part 4: Working on-site - Viva Training Academy

Toby, one of our trainees on the Managed Learning Programme, has been working on-site with a qualified gas engineer.

He has been getting some real hands-on experience and his confidence is growing.

“Hey guys, Toby here. Just checking-in with an update on the gas course I’m doing with Viva Training Academy.


“Today is Saturday and I’ve been out on site with an engineer called Andy as part of my portfolio placement.  We did a boiler exchange. I’ve got to say, for me, it’s been one of the best days – probably a highlight the course so far.’”


Learning on the job

“We turned up at the property and found a very old boiler that needed to be replaced.  We started off by draining the system down. Obviously when you’re doing this, you have to do all the tightness testing and stuff before you can drain the system down and take the boiler off the wall.

“It’s then, you know, you start noticing problems. For example, we noticed that the pipework running to the boiler was 15mm gas pipe, as opposed to 22mm, and the boiler wasn’t condensating properly. We needed to upgrade the gas pipe and run a new condensate pipe up to it.  

“Learning like this is great because you’re coming across things that you’re gonna see and need to put right day-in day-out when you’re actually working. There’s no better way to learn how to get round problems and work out what to do.”

Rising to the challenge

“Andy asked me to run the gas pipe. Yeah, something I’ve never done before, but with his supervision and his guidance I did it on my own and I think I did it really well. I felt I was able to offer real help in the actual installation of the boiler.

“I’m starting to pick up on things too – and I feel really proud. For example, the boilers we’ve been working on recently have all got internal filling loops, whereas this one didn’t have one and I questioned it: ‘Where’s your filling loop?’ and Andy said ‘Oh yeah! Glad you reminded me of that’, because he hadn’t plumbed in for one. 

“I’m not being critical, it’s just you know, an oversight, but the great thing for me is that now I’ve seen it done a couple of times and started to understand how everything comes together, I feel I can ask those sort of questions.”

An exciting week ahead

“So yeah, it’s all really starting to click together and I’m feeling super excited about moving on to next week when I’m gonna be doing boiler installs most of the week. 

“I’m feeling more and more confident now I’m seeing the process done time and time again – and gaining more and more practical experience.  I feel I can be of real value to the engineers I’m out on placement with.  

“My confidence is building to a point where, whether I’m working with a company or out on my own, I’ll have the ability to go out and do the jobs properly safely and competently.”

If you’d like to find out more about gas training here at Viva Training Academy please get in touch.

Video Diary Parts: