Warming Up for Winter

With winter just around the corner, if you are thinking of updating your insulation or heating, don’t forget to get your building consent application in early so that you aren’t left waiting in the cold!


You can install underfloor or ceiling insulation without a building consent. However, if you’re proposing to install insulation in an external wall, or an internal wall that is a fire separation wall, you will need to apply for a building consent.

Example 1: If the external walls to a house are to be injected with expanding insulating foam, you will need to apply for a building consent.

Example 2: If a fire-rated tenancy wall to an apartment or flat is to be retrofitted with thermal insulation, you will need to apply for a building consent.

Please contact us for guidance on determining if an internal wall is a fire separation wall.

We also encourage you to get in touch if you are unsure whether or not you require building consent for any work you intend to carry out.


You can install a gas or electric heater or heat pump without a building consent. However, if you are proposing to install any kind of solid or liquid fuel heating appliance, eg woodburner, multi-fuel burner, open fire, coal burner, diesel burner or cooker using wood or coal, etc, then you should read all of the following information.

What do I need to do?

  • You will need to complete a Form 2SF – Solid Fuel Appliance Application – which can be found on our website www.tararuadc.govt.nz or you can pick one up from any of our Service Centres.
  • Two copies of the manufacturer’s specifications and your floor plan are required. The plan needs to show the location of the fire and the smoke alarms (these must be located within three metres of your bedroom doors and must be in working order).
  • Payment of full fees at time of application submission.

How much will it cost me?

  • A freestanding fire is $275 and includes one inspection.
  • An inbuilt fire is $370 and includes two inspections.

How long will it take?

Under the Building Act 2004, Council are allowed up to 20 working days to process a consent – so you will need to have your application in early to avoid any delay in getting your consent. Remember, you must have your approved building consent before you install your fire.

What does a fire inspection involve?

FREESTANDING: Our Building Officers will check that the appliance is installed to the manufacturer’s details. They will check all clearance details (wall, floor, ceiling, drapes, joist, rafter, battens, purlins, insulation and underlay), hearth dimensions and fixings/flue size, as well as height and location in relation to roof plane. They will also ensure that the roof flashings are weathertight. Finally, they will check that the smoke alarms are in the correct location and are in working order.

INBUILT: On the first inspection, our Building Officers will check the stability and integrity of chimney and hearth and identify any remedial work that needs to be carried out before the second inspection. They will check the mantle height/clearance and will discuss heat shield requirements. (Please ensure that the chimney is swept and clean and that the fire has not been installed before this inspection).

On the second inspection, the Building Officers will check the installation is in accordance with the manufacturers and consent details, they will check all clearance details, hearth dimension, flue size and height. They will ensure the chimney/roof flashing are weathertight and check the smoke alarms.

What if I want a wetback installed?

If you are having a wetback installed, this work must be carried out by a registered plumber. You can go to www.pgdb.co.nz to check that the plumber you are using is registered.

Council are happy to answer any questions you may have regarding building consents for insulation or heating.

You can get in touch with the Council team by phoning 06 374 4080 (north) or 06 376 0110 (south).

Alternatively, you can email us on info@tararuadc.govt.nz.

<< Back to Latest News(Posted on: 27/02/2017)