If you smell gas at home, you might just have an issue. You’ve probably got a gas leak. I’m not referring to gasoline here, but I’m going to suggest (with my tongue strongly in my cheek) that if you smell gasoline in your home’s living room, you might want to consider parking your vehicle outside or in your garage. Seriously, however, there’s no laughing matter in your home’s gas smell.
Gas is used as a fuel in contemporary households to run a lot of distinct devices. Gas is most commonly used by home heating devices like furnaces and boilers. The heaters of gas-fired waters are very prevalent. It can be used as a cooking gas such as with ranges or cook-tops, heat or decoration fireplaces, and other uses such as dryers for clothing. It is, after all, an effective fuel and in most geographical places are easily accessible in some form. In prevalent residential use, two kinds of gas are natural gas and liquefied propane (LP) gas. Each one has its own characteristics and in different respects each one is unique. Let’s look at the two distinct gas kinds.
Natural gas is a fossil fuel-based on carbon, typically piped by a public utility provider straight into a home. It is heavier than air, which means it will dissipate into the environment easily if it leaks.
LP gas is also a fossil fuel-based on carbon. It has more energy accessible per unit measurement than natural gas and can easily switch to a liquid state. LP gas is about 1.5 times heavier than air… which implies that if it leaks, it sinks to the point of the ground or grade and collects (more on that later) in small fields.
It should be noted that both natural gas and LP gas are nearly odorless in their natural states (conditions). Processors of both products add a chemical called Methyl Mercaptan to the gas blend to allow individuals to easily detect gas leakage (using their nose). Methyl Mercaptan was characterized as smelling like rotten cabbage or rotten eggs. Listen… it’s crucial! If you’re smelling rotten cabbage, and you’re pretty sure you don’t have any rotten cabbage lying around, that odor should trigger an instant alarm to go inside your head. If you think that inside your home there is a gas leak, there are a few things you need to do… and fast.
There are a few things to do as well.
• Panic… you’re well-being relies on maintaining a clear head and doing what you need to do in a timely way systematically. If you freak out as quickly as you smell gas, you’re not going to think clearly
• Light a match or cigarette lighter… this may seem like a no-brainer but, well, it has occurred and the findings have not been pretty• Do not run any electrical equipment that include light switches, equipment or even your hard-wired telephone… any potential for any electrical spark should be avoided entirely
• Do not conn. In the event of natural gas or in the event of LP gas, the primary gas valve is generally situated at the gas meter• Call the gas business or gas provider from your cell phone or from a neighbor’s phone. The utility company often has a 24-hour emergency telephone number that you can call, especially in the event of natural gas, and many LP gas providers also have such an emergency number. This number should be held in a place that is easily available and accessible.
Recall my mention of LP gas is heavier than air? And it’s going to gather in small fields or rooms? I think that merits a little more emphasis. Because LP gas is gathering in small fields, you need to be specifically aware of this reality. For example, if your home has a cellar and there is gas leakage in that region, then the gas may accumulate in sump pits or other small regions where ventilation is not easily achieved and some kinds of electrical appliances are usually found down in the cellar. We have already created that it is not a healthy mixture of gas and electric sparks. There’s no need to be afraid… just be aware. There’s a reason, a very nice reason, why an LP gas tank is not permitted to be stored in a boat’s hull… it’s because a boat’s hull could be filled with gas and ignited, leading in another one of those circumstances where the result is simply not pretty. Again, be smart… be educated… be conscious… be conscious.
As a Raleigh Home Inspector, and during the performance of any Raleigh Home Inspection (of homes, of course, served by gas), our customers have often trusted that they are afraid of gas; I can’t tell you how often that fear has been shared with me. My response, always, is that there is no reason to fear gas at all. Gas should be respected, though; in reality. Gas requires consideration from you. However, only if they are under-educated and under-prepared should one be afraid. With regard to gas, respect necessarily involves a few fundamental general security principles.
First, educate yourself. Any and all gas-fired appliances must be correctly maintained… the equipment on the market today is intended, tested and approved for that fuel. If the equipment is well maintained, it should provide secure and trouble-free service for any fuel-related problems by experts in accordance with the suggestions of the manufacturers.
Second, prepare yourself. It’s of the utmost importance for you to be educated about the potential safety-related issues of any of your home’s complex systems and appliances… which just makes good sense, wouldn’t you agree? Just as it’s wise to have a formal safety/evacuation plan in place in the event of a fire, so it’s clever to have a plan for what you’re going to do if you smell gas at home and are prepared to perform it at any moment. It is suggested that all home occupants engage in a training drill to guarantee that when brought into action, the plan is efficient. Practice is said to make it perfect… and you know it does. You’re going to want your plan to be as near as possible to being completely executed, which implies it needs to be practiced and rehearsed.
In conclusion… you should be able to locate a gas leak and understand what you are going to do if you smell gas inside your home. You should be familiar with all the gas-fired machinery in your home, respect the fuel without worrying about it, and have a formal and easily executable plan in case your built-in olfactory sensory, gas detection, and alarm system (that’s them) is used. You’re going to feel comfortable and confident that you’re ready for what might be an emergency. Your life… and your loved ones ‘ safety… may rely on it very well!
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