HVAC technician inspecting gas leak in home

Gas leaks can occur in your home without warning. While the smell of gas is the first clue something could be wrong, determining if you have a leak is crucial to keep your family safe. Here we review what to do if you think you have a gas link.

What Does Leaking Gas Smell Like?

First, it is important to recognize the smell of gas. Because it is naturally odourless, a chemical called mercaptan is added to the gas to alert people of a possible gas leak. The smell is quite distinct, very similar to the smell of rotten eggs. If you smell rotten or boiled eggs, this is a sign you could have a gas leak. While something such as turning on a gas stove or fireplace can leave a residue of the smell, a persistent smell is a warning something could be wrong.

How Do I Know I Have A Gas Leak?

If you smell rotten eggs, search your home for the following:

  • A hissing or whistling coming from around your gas line
  • Damage to the gas line or the connection
  • A white cloud, blowing dust, or bubbles in standing water in your basement or around your home
  • Plants that are dying
  • A natural gas smell in the furnace room or around your gas water heater

These are tell-tale signs you need to call a professional right away.

Gas or Furnace Gas Leak Symptoms

You or your family might also be experiencing physical symptoms from a gas leak. A slower leak can see a buildup of issues including:

  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Irritation in the eyes and throat
  • Feeling very tired
  • Issues breathing

Your pets might also be acting sickly from exposure to gas. Because high levels of gas might lead to unconsciousness or even in the worst cases death, you should leave your home immediately and call for help.

Interested in learning more about the warning signs of a gas leak in your house? At Dows ClimateCare, we are happy to help educate. Give us a call today.

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How To Tell If Furnace Is Leaking Gas

To check for a leak from the furnace, your first clue is the smell becoming stronger in the furnace area along with a hissing sound. If the smell is not overly strong, or you don’t hear hissing, mix a cup of water with a tablespoon of dish soap, and put it in a spray bottle. Spray it on the pipes and see if it bubbles. If it does, there is definitely a leak.

How To Check For A Gas Leak In A Water Heater

You can use the same test for your water heater as you do with your furnace. As well, if the water heater gas valve is leaking it might either need to be replaced or tightened. In this case, your best bet is to leave it to the professionals and have them check the possible gas leak, water heater control valve, and any other potential issues such as if the gas from the hot water heater is leaking from the bottom.

Who Do I Call If I Have A Gas Leak?

As soon as you suspect you have a gas leak follow these steps:

  • Stop what you’re doing
  • Tell everyone to stop using their cellphone or landline
  • Don’t create a source of ignition such as smoking, lighting matches, or operating electrical switches
  • Get everyone outside, including your pets
  • Leave the door open
  • Call 911

Do not go back into the house until you are told it is safe.

The professionals at Dows Climate Care can determine if they need to come in right away or if simply turning off the system and coming the next day would be best. For all of your HVAC needs contact our experts today!

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