Natural gas furnaces are efficient, affordable, and relatively easy to maintain. However, when you have a gas furnace, there is always some potential for gas leaks. A leak may develop in the furnace itself or in the gas lines leading to the furnace. Unfortunately, these leaks can cause illness and home fires. If you know the key signs of a gas leak, you can call a gas heater repair company before disaster strikes.
Occasionally the pipes that carry natural gas into and through your home will develop tiny cracks or holes. Because the gas inside the pipes is under pressure, it comes out of these cracks very quickly, often making a hissing noise.
These hissing noises may be tough to hear when your furnace is running, so wait until your furnace is off to listen for them.
People often say natural gas smells like rotten eggs, but this is not quite accurate. Natural gas does not have a scent at all. However, gas companies add sulfur to the gas before sending it out to homes. The sulfur does smell similar to rotten eggs or dirty gym socks. If you’ve noticed a suspicious stink in your home, then you may have a gas leak — especially if the smell is strongest near your furnace.
If you don’t already have house plants, consider investing in a couple. Not only are they attractive, but they also serve as helpful indicators for gas leaks. Natural gas tends to seep into the soil that indoor plants are potted in. As it does so, it interferes with the plant roots’ ability to absorb water and nutrients from the soil. This causes the plants to wither, then die.
If you’re confident your house plants are getting enough water and sun, and yet they are still dying, then have a heating contractor come take a look.
Inhaling natural gas is not good for your health. While brief exposure to natural gas may not cause any symptoms, spending an extended period of time in a home with a gas leak can cause you to become ill.
The key symptoms of natural gas exposure mimic those of the flu and include:
Sometimes pets will develop these symptoms before their human owners. If your pet is unexplainably ill, consider whether a gas leak might be behind their illness.
If you do notice the above signs of a gas leak, leave your home immediately. Call both your local gas company and a 24-hour HVAC service. A technician can come inspect the furnace and associated gas lines for leaks and make any necessary furnace repairs.
Are you looking for reliable heating and air contractors in Philadelphia or the surrounding area? Contact H & H Heating and Air Conditioning. We offer furnace repairs, tune-ups, installation services, and more.