Having had very recent experience of smelling gas it’s really important to be gas safe at home. One of the days last month, hubby had gone upstairs to bed and after half an hour I thought I could smell something. I wasn’t sure what I could smell as I’d had the windows open and it had been barbeque weather so there was an unusual aroma in the air but I got up and walked towards the kitchen and the smell got stronger. We’d knocked the gas on, on the cooker by accident and it had filled the kitchen. So scary!
Carbon monoxide leakage can prove fatal so it is vital you ensure the gas appliances in your home are functioning correctly. Why not follow some of the following tips to keep yourself out of harm’s way?
Call in an expert
If you have boiler cover then you may be entitled to a free check-up on your appliances by a Gas Safe Register approved engineer. Only professionals on this list are approved to carry out such work so make sure that anyone coming to your home has the right credentials by asking for identification and jotting down their serial number. It is also important to check they have the skills required to do the specific job you need carrying out as all work is different. Annual checks should make sure everything is working as it should be, harmful emissions are leaving the home and your appliances – such as your gas cooker or fire – are functioning as efficiently as possible.
Get a carbon monoxide alarm
If you want a little extra peace of mind on top of your annual boiler service then a carbon monoxide alarm could provide it. They can be purchased from your local DIY store and will make you aware if gas is detected in your home. It is worth remembering that carbon monoxide is almost impossible for us to detect as it is odourless, colourless and tasteless , so make sure you remain as safe as possible. There are, however, some symptoms to be aware of, such as breathlessness, nausea, dizziness and loss of consciousness.
Only use appliances for their intended purpose
It may seem obvious to some but it’s not advisable to use an appliance for anything other than its intended purpose. As an example heating a room with a gas oven or using a barbeque indoors could be dangerous.
If you suspect something is wrong or are suffering from any of the symptoms then don’t sit in silence as this could prove deadly. The National Gas Emergency Service should be your first port of call and can be contacted on 0800 111 999. It is also wise to switch off appliances and ventilate the room as best as possible by opening doors and windows. If you suspect the problem has affected your health then contact a doctor immediately and explain the situation.
Always call an expert
No matter how handy you are around the home it is never worth trying to fix a gas appliance yourself. Perhaps surprisingly the Gas Safe Register found that a third of people would attempt to resolve a problem on their own. If work is not carried out by a qualified professional then it may result in carbon monoxide poisoning, leaks, explosions or fires so don’t take the risk. It is also worth finding out where your gas pipes are located so you don’t accidently damage them while conducting other DIY work.
Disclaimer: This is a guest post