An undiscovered gas leak is a frightening thought for any homeowner. If gone untreated, a leak can lead to a number of health issues for you and your family, including nausea, headaches, or even irregular breathing.
The best prevention is to educate yourself on the warning signs so you know what to look for if you suspect a problem. If you find an issue, it’s imperative you call a professional right away.
To help you out, we’re going over how to detect a gas leak on your property. Understanding the warning signs is the best way to keep your family safe and prevent costly bills.
A Strange Odor
A gas leak is often associated with an unusual odor. The best way to describe it is a rotten egg or sulfuric smell.
This natural gas smell is caused by mercaptan, an additive the utility company uses to create an odor that’s easy to detect. Otherwise, the gas is odorless.
It’s important to note that some people don’t pick up on the smell, so it’s important to understand additional warning signs.
Listen for a Hissing Sound
Another good indicator of a gas leak is a hissing sound coming from the line. This could mean you’re dealing with a significant leak. You’ll want to get a professional involved immediately.
You also may hear a hissing sound coming from your HVAC system. This is an indication of a refrigerant leak or a faulty compressor. You’ll need to turn off your AC and call a technician.
The Bubble Test
If you suspect a gas leak but aren’t positive, you can perform a simple test to confirm the issue.
First, create a mixture of equal parts water and soap. Then, use a brush to apply the mixture to your gas line, ensuring you cover all fitting and connections.
If there’s a gas leak, you’ll notice tiny bubbles forming in the area where gas is escaping.
Higher Gas Bills
It’s easy for a small gas leak to go unnoticed. Although you may not notice any strange smells or sounds, gas could be escaping very gradually.
When this is the case, you’ll most likely begin to see your gas bills increasing. If this happens, either perform the bubble test or call a technician in to confirm.
Dead Plants and Vegetation
Gas leaks don’t only happen inside your home. They can also occur underground somewhere on your property.
If you notice plants and vegetation suddenly dying in a given area of your lawn, it’s possible you have a leak. This happens as a result of natural gas restricting the amount of oxygen available your plants.
If you have a garden, your vegetables may change color if natural gas is present in the soil underneath them. You’ll need to have your gas line inspected right away.
Understanding How to Detect a Gas Leak
By knowing the warning signs, you’ll have peace of mind your family and home are protected. Now that you understand how to detect a gas leak, it’s a good idea to perform regular checks. If you discover an issue, play it safe and call an expert.
We provide a full range of leak detection services throughout Southern California. Contact us today.