Millions of Americans use natural gas as their primary fuel source for heating their homes and other purposes. There are more than a handful of good reasons why natural gas is popular, but the most notable of all is the fact that gas-powered equipment is energy-efficient. Whether you use it for your on-demand water heater, kitchen purposes, clothes dryer, or the gas-powered fireplace, natural gas is and will always be reliable.
But if there is one notable drawback in using natural gas is the inherent danger it poses when there is a leak. Fortunately, there are several safety precautions and strategies you can take so as to ensure the operation and use of gas-fired equipment is guaranteed safe. Let us have a look at what those safety measures are.
1 – If you suddenly smell something like rotten eggs, the first thing you should do is take everyone outside and then call 911 or the fire department.
The smell of rotten eggs, along with the sound of escaping gas is a clear sign of a gas leak. There are things you cannot do or else risk blowing up your house or ignite a fire. This includes using your mobile phone and other electrical devices and switches. The most important thing to do is get outside as fast as you can and be sure to leave the door open. Natural gas producers intentionally placed a distinctive smell to it so that leaks can easily be detected.
2 – Maintenance is crucial.
All appliances and equipment that utilize natural gas must be regularly serviced. It is obviously the most critical precautionary measure you could take. As a homeowner, it is your responsibility to be aware of the signs of a malfunctioning or problematic system, but it does not have to reach that point though. With regular maintenance from a licensed and qualified natural gas technician, you ensure that your system operates in the most efficient manner. But maintenance is not just about ensuring efficiency. Doing so also means that minor problems with the equipment are detected early and fixed as soon as possible, thereby avoiding costly repairs or replacements later on.
3 – Do you know where your natural gas shut-off valve is?
It may be one of the most obvious things you should learn, but you’d be surprised to know that many homeowners who use gas are not even aware where the shut-off valve is. If there is an emergency like a gas leak, you must shut the gas off right away, but how will you do that without knowing where it is? Also, be sure you have a wrench or screw driver within reach in case of an emergency.
4 – Invest in a carbon monoxide detector.
The use of natural gas for heating and others can lead to carbon monoxide poisoning once there is a leak. Unlike natural gas itself, carbon monoxide is doubly dangerous because it is odorless and invisible. It does not blow up or cause fire, but if it builds up indoors over time, it can reach dangerous levels, which in turn could poison you and your family while you’re asleep. But with a carbon monoxide detector installed, an alarm sounds whenever the level inside your home reaches the point of danger.
5 – Remove all obstructions.
Finally, be sure that no combustibles or any other thing is in contact with your equipment that uses natural gas. The last thing you want is to start a fire because you place something near or in contact with hot surfaces. When it comes to anything that produces heat, there always is a possibility of fire, so do not be confident enough since anything could go wrong at any minute.