“Can gas leaks kill you?”

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Had a few searches hit our website with people asking if natural gas leaks can kill you.  YES, THEY CAN.   They should be taken very seriously.  The big risk is fire or explosion–enough to lose your home and injure or kill everyone in it.  [Google “gas leak house fire” for recent examples]

If you smell gas, it’s a bad leak and should be fixed.  Note that propone can be even more problematic since it’s heavier and can settle and collect in low spots like basements.  If you notice a faint smell of gas, call the gas company or a qualified contractor immediately.  If you notice a strong smell of gas, get out of the house immediately and then call the gas company from a safe location.

This is not an alarmist plea to panic about using gas.  It’s what I use to heat my home, and its how most homes in the U.S. are heated.  It has great advantages as a heating fuel.  I much prefer it to oil, which is dirtier, smellier, and fouls equipment faster.  It also allows for much more efficient equipment.  But gas must be used safely, and leaks should be taken seriously.

That’s why you should have your home tested for gas leaks and combustion safety issues (such as proper drafting of fuel-burning appliances and carbon monoxide spillage).  This is particulary true if you’re changing your house–remodeling, adding windows, insulating and air-sealing, etc since you not only have the risk of bumping pipe and loosening joints, but you also change to dynamics of how the house operates.

Take gas leaks seriously.  And insist that anyone working in your house take them seriously, too. 

Thanks,
Mike

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One Response to ““Can gas leaks kill you?””

  1. Some sobering home maintenance statistics « GreenHomes America Says:

    […] this to the discussions of carbon monoxide, gas leaks, and moisture problems. Professional maintenance just doesn’t save you money and protect your […]

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