Gas Pipe Leaks
Gas line leaks are dangerous. Every year, property worth $133 million is damaged due to gas leaks in the USA. Around 17 fatalities are recorded every year from natural gas leaks. To reduce incidents of gas line leaks, each homeowner needs to know how to identify a gas leak and call a professional licensed plumber for testing the gas line and to repair the leak.
If you suspect a gas leak in your home, you need to take quick action. If you’re in the Tucson area, Wood’s Plumbing can help you with all of your gas pipe needs. Our experienced team of licensed plumbers will be glad to provide you with round-the-clock emergency service, so you and your family will always be safe from gas pipe leaks.
Are You Responsible for Fixing Your Gas Leak?
TThe answer to this question depends on the location of your gas supply meter.
Many older homes have gas meters located in the alley away from the house. In some instances, this means that you may have a fairly long piece of gas pipe between the meter and the house. If there is a gas pipe leak before the meter, then Southwest Gas is responsible for the gas line repairs. If a leak develops after the meter, then you as the homeowner are responsible for the repairs.
How to Identify and Fix a Gas Leak
A gas leak can happen anywhere in the gas system. The first step in fixing a gas leak is to detect the leak. If you suspect a leak, you should check common places like the fittings joining the pipes, the regulators and the gas shut off valves that are prone to gas leaks. You should also watch for some signs of gas leaks, like:
Rotten eggs smell
Though natural gas is odorless, when supplied to your home, gas companies add sulfur compounds to make leaks easily detectable. If you can smell an odor like rotten eggs inside the house, it may be a sign of a gas leak. Immediately turn off the stove or oven. If you still smell the odor after shutting down the stove, then you will need to call a professional to inspect the gas system and lines for any leaks.
When there is a gas leak, you will be able to hear the gas making a hissing sound as it comes out through the gas lines. If you hear such sounds, immediately check your gas line system to determine if there is a leak.
It is not easy to detect a gas leak through a rotten egg smell and hissing sound if the gas pipe lines are fitted outdoors. However, you can look for any physical or visible changes around the pipes. For example, if you notice the grass is dying near the gas line, it could be due to gas leakage.
Carbon monoxide detectors
Carbon monoxide detectors can help in detecting any gas leaks in the house. The detector will alert you if there is an accumulation of carbon monoxide in the house.
Higher utility bills
Gas leaks can lead to a rise in utility bills. If you notice an outrageous monthly utility bill, inspect your gas line pipes for any signs of a leak.
Why Gas Pipe Leaks Are a Problem
You should always take a gas pipe leak seriously. Not only will a leak have a very bad effect on your gas bill, but gas is highly explosive. Thus, any leak is dangerous and needs to be repaired as soon as possible. Gas leaks are normally relatively easy to identify because of the rotten egg smell that is added to natural gas so it can be noticed right away. Even if you are not sure whether you have a gas leak, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Most homes will eventually have modifications or remodeling. These modifications may include adding a patio, concrete slab, or concrete driveway. Often, if the gas meter is away from the house, these concrete additions are over the top of outside gas lines. If a leak starts in a pipe that is under concrete, it can form a pocket of gas, which can lead to an explosion. Modern building codes do not allow gas piping under concrete because of this potential danger. If you have this situation, and a leak occurs, the piping will have to be relocated, not repaired. This is another time you may want to consider being proactive rather than reactive.
If you need a professional licensed plumber, call Wood’s Plumbing today! We can fix your leaking gas pipe so you and your family stay safe. We can also test your entire gas system to ensure that it is in good working order. Our team is certified through Southwest Gas.