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Gas plumber in Austin explains what to do if you suspect a gas leak
November 24, 2021 at 4:00 PM
cooking gas tanks lined up

Gas leaks can be terrifying. Installed correctly, natural gas poses no significant threat to your family’s safety. However, if a leak occurs, the potential effects are often damaging and extensive, especially if not fixed on time. As a property owner, you need to know how to identify signs of a gas leak and what to do about it.

At Economy Plumbing Services in Austin, TX, we care deeply about the safety and wellbeing of our customers. That’s why we’ve decided to address this issue and share our insights on what to do if you suspect a gas leak. Let’s get to it.

Signs to look for if you suspect a gas leak

Physical signs

Natural gas is methane, which has an odor similar to sulfur or rotten eggs. Once you catch a whiff, try to follow it to pinpoint the source of the leak. Aside from the smell, other physical signs include:

  • Dead or dying houseplants
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Nausea
  • Irritations
  • Lightheadedness
  • Dizziness

Listen for a whistling noise

Gas leaks produce a high-pitched whistling or hissing noise. Locate where the noise comes from to make it easier for the gas plumber to find the leak. Don’t forget to wear a mask because the smell of methane is discomforting. Once you find the source of the noise, do not attempt to fix it or touch it. Call your neighborhood gas plumber to fix the leak and make sure no one is within the premises during the process.

Check the stove’s flames

Your stove or gas range emits blue flames because of the presence of oxygen around it. When there’s a gas leak, the stove’s flames turn red or orange. It means that there’s another gas present that affects the concentration of oxygen nearby. Methane only burns with the presence of oxygen. When methane burns, it releases carbon dioxide, which actively suppresses fire. That’s why the flame is not blue.

What do I do if I identify any of these signs?

First things first, try not to panic. It’s a scary situation to be in, that’s for sure. But panicking will not help matters. Here’s what you can do instead:

1. Get everyone out

Get your family or co-workers out of the building right away. A gas leak is a serious matter so don’t waste time second-guessing — just clear the premises as quickly as you can.

2. Don’t use any electrical devices

If the gas has been leaking for a while, it might take just a spark from the light switch or electric fan to set it off. It’s almost impossible to tell how extensive a gas leak is from the smell alone, so it’s always best to err on the side of caution.

3. Open the doors and windows on your way out

Make sure the doors and windows are wide open once you notice a gas leak. This prevents the gas from being concentrated within the property. Keep in mind that this does not eliminate the potential dangers of a gas leak, but it can help reduce the impact should it go off.

4. Call 911 and your local plumber

Dial 911 and explain the situation to them. There are safety protocols that they can walk you through. Call your local gas plumber as well to come take a look. These professionals have the equipment and technical know-how to safely enter the building and fix the leak.

5. Don’t go back in

Once you’ve called for help, stay outside and wait for them to arrive. Resist the urge to re-enter the building. Let the professionals go in and do what needs to be done.

Contact us for help

If you suspect a gas leak in your home, you can count on Economy Plumbing Services to come to the rescue. We are your go-to gas plumber in Austin, Texas. Our licensed service technicians can check for gas leaks and make the necessary fixes. We also provide a complete lineup of residential and commercial solutions, including backflow testing, maintenance, repairs, and replacements.

Call us now at (512) 649-2811 or reach us through our contact form to get started.