Problems with your natural gas line can put your family at serious risk, especially in the event of a leak. Don’t wait until it’s too late! Contact us right away if you notice any signs of a leak.
HOW TO DETECT A GAS LEAK
Gas leaks are uncommon, but they can and do occur here in the GTA. If you have one or more gas-fired appliances (such as a furnace, air conditioning, boiler, water heater, fireplace or stove range) or your home is connected to a utility gas line, you and your family should know how to recognize the signs of a possible gas leak.
Gas leaks can be difficult to detect. Pure natural gas is invisible and has no odour. However, if you know what to look for, it is possible to detect natural gas by smell, sound or its effects on your property.
Here are some signs of a possible gas leak:
- Rotten egg smell
Here in Ontario, our utility providers add a harmless chemical (called mercaptan) to make the gas smell like sulphur or rotten eggs. This smell is a telltale sign of a leaking gas pipe inside your home.
- Heavy petroleum-like smell throughout the home
Don’t discount an odd smell just because you don’t use natural gas! Strong oil, kerosene or petroleum-like odours are another possible gas leak sign.
- Discoloured vegetation on any part of your lawn
If the leak occurs where the gas line runs under your lawn, you may notice patches of dead or stagnant grass. You may also see bubbling mud, standing water or a rotten egg smell in the same spot.
- Hissing sound or unusual noise
Listen carefully in the area surrounding your gas appliances. If you hear whistling, hissing or blowing, it could be the sound of gas escaping..
- Natural gas leak detector
Some carbon monoxide detectors are also equipped to detect natural gas. However, you should not rely on a CO alarm as a natural gas detector unless you are absolutely certain the device has this function.
WHAT TO DO IN THE EVENT OF A PROBLEM
Suspect a leak? Don’t hesitate to take these important precautions right away:
- Get everyone out of the home and into to fresh air immediately.
- Immediately call 911 if anyone is experiencing a headache, fatigue, vision problems, shortness of breath or loss of consciousness. These can be symptoms of exposure to natural gas. Note that you should never use your mobile phone inside the home if a leak is suspected – move to fresh air first.
- Place an emergency service call to your utility company and public agency about the potential leak.
- It is never safe to try to repair a natural gas leak or find the source of the leak on your own. The only measure you should take on your own is cutting the gas supply off, but only if you know how to do this.
- Do not start any vehicles or motors, turn appliances on or off, use phones or electronics, or light a flame near the suspected leak.
WHAT ARE SIGNS THAT IT IS TIME TO REPLACE OR REPAIR YOUR GAS LINE?
Gas lines should never be left in a state of disrepair. A damaged line gas line can not only result in a leak, but also increase the risk of fire or explosion. Keep an eye out for the following signs of a damaged gas line:
- Signs of visible damage to the intersections of your gas lines
- Noticeably twisted, fractured, or dented lines
- Less heat being generated by your gas-fired furnace or heater
- Higher utility costs for the same amount of usage
Call us today if you suspect your line is in need of attention. Our plumbers and gasfitters can be at your home in as little as 4 hours in an emergency.