Do you have natural gas or Propane appliances? Did you know current Plumbing code requires CO (Carbon Monoxide) Detectors within 10 feet of all sleeping rooms? These requirements are in place to help notify you in case of an gas leak or emergency. We recently read an article published in Tennessee about fire & health statistics during the heating season. Some great points that stood out to us were: "In addition to fire risks, carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning can also result from improper home heating practices. CO, often called “the silent killer,” is a gas you cannot see, taste, or smell. It can be created when fuels do not burn properly. Sources of carbon monoxide in the home can include oil and gas furnaces, gas water heaters, wood and gas fireplaces, gas ranges and ovens, gas or kerosene space heaters, and wood stoves. A person can be poisoned by a small amount of CO over a longer period of time or by a large amount of CO over a shorter amount of time."
Some helpful tips provided in the article that our Texas customers should utilize are the following safety precautions:
If the pilot light of your gas heater goes out, allow five minutes or more for the gas to go away before trying to relight the pilot. Follow manufacturer’s instructions when relighting the pilot. Do not allow gas to accumulate, and light the match before you turn on the gas to the pilot to avoid risk of flashback.
If you smell gas in your gas heater, do not light the appliance. Leave the home immediately and call your local fire department or gas company.
CO alarms and smoke alarms should be installed on every level of the home. See the manufacturer’s instructions for exact placement and location.
All heaters need space. Keep anything that can burn at least three feet away from heating equipment.
Have heating equipment and chimneys cleaned and inspected every year by a qualified professional.
Purchase and use space heaters that have an automatic shut-off—if they tip over, they shut off.
Place space heaters on a solid, flat surface and keep them and their electrical cords away from things that can burn, high traffic areas, and doorways.
Remember to turn portable heaters off when leaving the room or going to bed.
Always use the right kind of fuel, specified by the manufacturer, for fuel burning space heaters.
Never use your oven to heat your home.
Burn only dry, seasoned wood in fireplaces and woodstoves. Never burn garbage or use flammable liquids to start a fire.
Make sure the fireplace has a sturdy screen to stop sparks from flying into the room. Ashes should be cool before putting them in a metal container. Keep the container a safe distance away from your home.
Install wood burning stoves following manufacturer’s instructions or have a professional do the installation. All fuel-burning equipment should be vented to the outside to avoid CO poisoning.
This article may have been published with Tennessee statistics but these concerns are just as valid to our great state of Texas residents.
Plumb Masters Inc. is a licensed Plumbing company qualified to help you inspect your home for such risks and concerns. It is very important to get these items looked at on a regular basis & as we near closer to the "cold" season and start using appliances that haven't been used in 9+ months, it is a good idea to have them inspected prior to the first use of the year by a certified and licensed company.
Please call or email us to book an inspection of your Plumbing and gas appliance needs to ensure you have no hidden dangers lurking in your home.