Gas leak? Here’s what to do
Ensuring safety in the house is essential. There are simple things that people take for granted in their homes that could be very disastrous. Natural gas ranks among the top of the safest and also cleanest forms of fossil fuels. However, a gas leak is among the top life-threatening situations that can happen in your home.
A gas leak can cause gas poisoning and also results in great losses if the amount is too much to explode when ignited. It is therefore important to be aware of how to detect a gas leak, signs of gas poisoning and also how to react in the event of a leak.
This guide provides you with everything you need to know about gas leaks and how you can keep yourself safe.
Steps to take if you suspect a leak
The first thing that you need to have at your fingertips is the precautionary measures to take in case of a gas leak. Your safety should be the priority if you think you smell gas in your house. Therefore, there are things that you should immediately do and also avoid others.
- First, ensure that you don’t smoke or light matches and cigar lighters inside the house. That is because once the gas has leaked, it just needs a slight ignition to cause an explosion.
- Avoid turning on any electrical device in the house. That is because turning on these devices causes a spark that would ignite the leaked gas. Avoid turning on the lights too since it can also cause an explosion.
- Make sure that any naked flames such as candles stay off if they are on before the leaked gas can cause an explosion.
- Last but not least, ensure that all the ventilation areas are free of obstruction and that all windows and doors remain open. Doing this allows the free flow of fresh air and let out the gas. Another important thing should be to turn off the supply of gas at the meter until the leak has been rectified.
- You must also evacuate the house immediately and call for help from your plumbing company.
What causes gas leaks?
Occurrences of gas leaks in homes are relatively rare. But they cannot be ignored because when they happen, they can be fatal. There are some common causes responsible for most for most of the gas leaks. Amongst the major causes of gas leaks include:
1. Old and Corroded Pipes
The gas system installed several years ago may have pipes corroded or even damaged from physical pressure of molds. Openings on the pipes may, therefore, occur leading to a gas leak. Activities such as house renovations may create holes in the piping system resulting in the leak.
2. Incompetent installation
Installing a gas system and appliances that use gas requires the services of a professional gas fitter. If a mistake occurs during this process, gas may ooze out of the pipes into the surrounding. Proper and quality material used is necessary to avoid any incidence of a leak.
3. Poor maintenance
You need to have the gas system maintained as recommended by your plumber. Failure to observe the maintenance schedules may cause the cause gas leaks due to faults or worn down parts.
Signs of gas poisoning
Sometimes gas leakage may not be detected through smell especially if the leaking points have minute openings. Gas may be leaking in your house and result in poisoning especially due to insufficient burning which causes carbon monoxide. The good news is that there are common signs of gas poisoning recognizable before there is a severe effect on your health. Here are the common signs of a gas leak:
- Dull headache is one of the most common signs of gas poisoning. It usually occurs regularly especially when you are indoors. Having this kind of headache on frequent occasions when in the house can alert you to possible gas poisoning from leakage.
- Another sign that may give you a hint on gas poisoning includes body weakness. You often feel fatigued during most times of the day. You may not have had a rough day or skipped a meal, but your body senses that it is being worn out.
- Dizziness can also be a major sign of gas poisoning. This will usually happen after spending some time in the area with gas leakage. If you experience this feeling regularly, you might be a victim of gas poisoning.
- Another common indicator that you might be inhaling poisonous gas from gas leakage includes nausea and vomiting. Although this happens with people having several health conditions including pregnancy, it also may be due to poisoning. Furthermore, gas poisoning may also cause shortness of breath. A person experiences difficulties in breathing during this time. This feeling is usually very uncomfortable and can be fatal to people with existing breathing problems.
- Another major sign of gas poisoning includes this result due to an insufficient amount of oxygen reaching the brain of the victim. Gas poisoning interferes with the level of oxygen in the blood, which in turn affects the functioning of the brain. Although not permanently, individuals experiencing gas poisoning exhibit intervals of confusion and problems in coordination.
- In severe conditions, a person may be affected by blurred vision which is also a result of insufficient blood supply into the brain cells. Sometimes people also lose consciousness when the amount of gas they inhale from leakage is in excessive quantities.
If you experience one or a combination of these signs, it is important to immediately seek medical assistance. Furthermore, investigate the cause by inspecting your facility for gas leakage and acting accordingly.
Gas leaks can result in property damage through the explosion, the health risk from burns and also gas poisoning or death. To avoid any of these risks, make sure that your gas system should be checked regularly to replace any damaged or old pipes. Appliances that use gas should often get inspected for proper functioning. If you are looking for a Plumber in Noosa, contact Absolute Plumbing & Gas Solutions for an appointment. They are some of the best gas fitters around the Sunshine Coast, Tewantin and Sunrise Beach amongst other Noosa suburbs. With these gas fitters, value for money is a guarantee.