Your home might rely on natural gas for several reasons. If you use natural gas for heating, for your stove, or in your fireplace, then you know the benefits a natural gas line can give your home. However, it also comes with its own set of risks. Gas leaks can happen no matter the time of year, and this can create a stressful and hazardous environment in the home. As such, gas line repair is no laughing matter. Residential gas lines are usually safer than industrial lines because of their small size. However, this does not mean that you can ignore a gas leak is you suspect you have one.
As a homeowner with an in-home gas line, you should familiarize yourself with the potential causes and effects of a gas leak. If you know the signs to look for and the steps to take in the event of a gas leak, you’re far more likely to keep your family and your home safe from the potential dangers. If you live in the Stryker, Bryan, and Napoleon, OH area and are concerned that you may need gas line repair, call the natural gas plumber experts of Woolace & Johnson at 419-546-8424.
Potential Gas Leak Dangers
Natural gas is toxic when inhaled by people. Small levels of exposure cause relatively small problems like a headache or nausea. If natural gas isn’t burning properly, it can release carbon monoxide into your home. This will cause similar effects as the gas leak itself. It can cause dizziness and flu-like symptoms, but these will happen faster. If exposed to natural gases or carbon monoxide for extended periods of time in small, poorly ventilated areas, it can reduce the amount of oxygen available to breathe and cause you to suffocate. Large amounts of natural gas in small spaces can also explode in the proper conditions. Despite the risks that are accompanied by a leak, natural gas is safe to use. You just have to keep an eye out for the signs that you have a gas leak. For more information from a natural gas plumber or gas plumbing services in Woolace & Johnson, call the certified plumbers of Woolace & Johnson at 419-546-8424.
Signs Of a Gas Leak
The best way to keep yourself, your family, and your home safe from the potential dangers of a gas leak is to know the signs that your natural gas line is leaking. If you encounter any of the following, you should consider shutting off your homes gas line and contacting specialists to conduct a home natural gas line repair.
- Strong Sulfur Smell Natural gas is naturally odorless. Because gas leaks carry dangerous side effects, gas companies put an additive in the gas to make it easier to detect a leak. If you smell sulfur or rotten eggs, you may have a gas leak.
- Dying House Plants Natural gas can kill your plants. The lack of ventilation in a house with a gas leak disrupts the plants natural oxygen producing process.
- Sickness in Family / Pets If the people and animals in your household are suddenly all getting sick, you should consider the possibility that it is a gas leak and not a shared virus or illness. If your pets are affected sooner and faster than you are, a gas leak is very likely.
- Higher Gas Bills If your gas bills have been getting steadily higher and higher while your gas consumption has remained steady, you likely require gas line repair. A hole in your natural gas line means you’re a hole in your pocket.
Gas Leak Prevention Tips
There are steps you can take to minimize the potential for a gas leak in your home.
- Proper Ventilation If you have gas appliances in your home, make sure there is enough space around them so air can flow. Areas where gas can accumulate in the event of a leak can be extremely dangerous.
- Annual Inspections The best way to keep your gas lines from breaking down and leaking is to make sure professionals check the integrity of the system every year. Ensure they check every appliance and line connected to the gas line in your home.
- Fire Extinguishers This may seem like a basic step, but a fire extinguisher can mean the difference between a line that gas line that very briefly catches on fire while leaking, and a gas line that explodes while leaking. Inspect the extinguisher as often as you can, and ensure to refill it or replace it if you ever have to use it.
- Chemical Storage Keep all flammable and combustible chemicals and solvents away from gas appliances. This doesn’t help prevent gas leaks, but it does help minimize the potential damages to your home in the event of a leak.
- Get a Carbon Monoxide Detector You can get a device that plugs into the power grid of your home with a backup battery for power outages. The cheapest carbon monoxide detectors cost approximately $20 per unit. Given their usefulness in detecting dangerous quantities of natural gas and carbon monoxide, they are one of the most cost effective ways to minimize the hazards of a gas leak on your family and your home.
What should you do if you decide you may have a gas leak? If you experience any combinations of these symptoms, you should memorize the steps to take to help verify and fix a gas leak. If you smell the additive in the gas, then you need to evacuate your home or business. Make sure you find anyone who is inside, and get them to go outdoors. As you leave the building, leave all doors open behind you to help vent the gas from the enclosed space of your home to the outdoors.
Gas is far more dangerous in an enclosed space, and less likely to react or cause negative reactions in people when outside. If you feel like the leak may not be too severe, you can open windows to help it vent the natural gas outdoors, as it is less likely to explode if there is nothing keeping it in a confined space. If you have access to your gas, turn it off. Blow out any pilot lights if you can. The flame from a pilot light combined with a gas leak can cause an explosion. Once you and everyone else is outside, call your 911 and someone who can diagnose and repair a gas leak.
Emergency services can assist in evacuating the area while trained professionals look for and repair the leak. If you have a gas leak in Stryker, Bryan, and Napoleon, OH and need certified gas plumbers to fix it, contact Woolace & Johnson at 419-546-8424. We’re available for 24 hours a day to respond to emergencies like natural gas leaks in the home and emergency gas line repair.