Gas Safety Week 2021: Why is gas safety so important? 13 Sep 2021
Getting your gas appliances checked by a professional is really important all year round, not just during Gas Safety Week because it could mean the difference between a warm home and a fatal accident. Below are all the things you need to know to keep your home safe and warm.
What you need to have checked?
You need to get any appliance that uses gas in your home checked for damage or faults. Appliances such as boilers, flues, gas ovens and gas fires should be looked over by a registered safety engineer.
They will check the gas pipes to make sure there are no leaks, and check that the appliance is working as it should. The engineer will also make sure the appliance is suitable for the room it is in, and that it is correctly ventilated. The flues that take the carbon monoxide away and out of your house will also be checked to make sure that they are safe for use.
What are the risks of not getting your appliances checked?
There are 3 main risks of having faulty gas appliances, all of which could have a devastating effect on your health or home.
Gas leaks from faulty pipes can cause illness if left unattended to. Symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, headaches and weakness can all be symptoms of gas poisoning.
Carbon Monoxide is produced when the gas is burned and if it leaks into a room that is not well ventilated this can be fatal.
Fires and even explosions can happen if gas does leak from appliances. If a room fills with gas and there is a spark the gas could ignite with potentially fatal consequences.
What do I do if I smell gas?
To keep yourself safe you will need to know the emergency procedure if you do smell gas. Follow the steps below to make sure you stay safe
- Get fresh air immediately; open doors and windows to ventilate the rooms.
- Turn off the gas emergency control valve at the meter if possible.
- If there are any flames, extinguish them, and make sure not to use any electrical appliances including lightswitches, as these can cause the gas to ignite.
- Find the relevant National Gas Emergency service number for your area. A list can be found online, we recommend keeping it handy by a door if possible.
- If the attending emergency operative identifies an issue with any gas appliances, follow their advice concerning the use of the equipment. Where advised, contact a Gas Safe registered engineer to fix the appliance and check it’s safe.
If you are feeling unwell make sure to contact your doctor to get checked out.
Finally, here are some top tips to keeping your home safe.
- Get an audible carbon monoxide alarm. This will alert you if CO is too high in a room with gas appliances and could save your life. It is a legal requirement for landlords to provide a carbon monoxide alarm in any toom used as living accommodation where solid fuel is used.
- Get your gas appliances checked once a year to make sure any problems are caught and fixed early.
- Only use registered Gas Safety engineers to carry out work on your appliances, and make sure to check both sides of their ID card on arrival.
- Only use gas appliances as they were intended, to minimise risk of damaging or causing Gas leaks.
- Know the emergency procedure above to make sure that in any situation you are able to get out and get help safely.