Gas leak repair can provide safety and security for your family and business. When natural gas is properly utilized, it is both safe and clean. It allows each of us to enjoy the economic benefits of hot water, cooking, warmth, etc. Without it, life just wouldn’t be as enjoyable.
When a gas leak develops, this useful commodity can turn into a danger for anyone who is in the building. How you handle a situation when a gas leak develops can mean the difference between a inconvenience and a catastrophe.
Signs of a Gas Leak
The first give away that you have a gas leak is the smell of sulfur, or rotten eggs. This is due to an odorant that is required in natural gas called mercaptan. Without it, natural gas is odorless so it would be nearly impossible to detect. If you notice this distinct smell, there are some other give aways that can help solidify your suspicion. These examples don’t occur with all gas leaks, but they do sometimes appear. There may be a hissing/ whistling sound near the gas appliance or gas line. With that, if it is outside, sometimes there is dead or discolored grass near the leak. It is especially important to get your gas line checked if you notice exposed piping after a natural disaster.
Gas Leak Repair | Steps to Take
When someone smells or suspects a gas leak, your first priority is safety. No matter if you are in a residential home or a commercial business building, your actions will be similar.
- Open windows and do not use light switches, electrical appliances, any type of phone, or garage doors
- Get everyone out of the building and far away, then you can use your phone to call for help
- For help, either call 911 or your local utility company. If your utility company is not responding, call the fire department
- The response to this call will most likely end up with either your utility company, or the fire department coming to turn your gas off at the meter
- They will let you know if/when it is safe to return, but will not allow the gas to be turned back on until the leak repair is complete
How Gas Lines Become Damaged
There are two main reasons that gas lines can spur a leak. The first being that both time and usage can corrode gas lines, making them more susceptible to cracks and breaks. Improper installation and environmental factors can also cause pipes to rust or get damaged. The second reason a gas leak can occur, is related to faulty, misused or improperly installed gas lines or appliances. It is important to have your gas line and appliances professionally installed and that you are extremely cautious when moving an appliance so that you do not alter the gas piping.
A gas leak repair is not a simple and straight forward process if you’re not familiar with the procedure. If your gas line was “yellow tagged” then they may not have turned off the gas. However, they told you to have it repaired ASAP. Although, if the gas is off, your utility company will allow only a licensed gas repair business to fix it. The gas company will then complete the necessary repair, test it, turn your gas back on, and verify that all the gas appliances are working properly.
On the other hand, being “red tagged” means that your gas was turned off and your meter booted. If this is the case, only your utility company can unlock your meter after a permit is obtained. Once the gas line is repaired, it will be put on test and your jurisdiction will make a proper inspection. If the gas line passes inspection, your gas will be turned on and officially safe to use again.
This process could take up to three to five days. With that being said, three to five days can feel like an eternity if you don’t have hot water, heat, cooking appliances, etc. This waiting can be avoided if you hire a specialist that has experience and knows how to speed up the process with an emergency permit and inspection.
Gas Leak Repair | Who to Call and Why?
Except for the owner of the home, only licensed individuals are legally allowed to fix your gas line. As the owner, you can do the work personally, but we strongly discourage it. The fire department and utility company cannot make recommendations for gas leak detection and repair, which unfortunately leaves you on your own. Who you call for your gas leak repair will determine your experience, and the reliability of the gas line.
When searching for a gas company that can complete the gas leak repair, ask friends and family for references, Google it, or see who the Better Business Bureau recommends. Once you have narrowed it down to a few companies, make sure to read reviews and check that they are licensed. By completing these steps, you are ensuring that you will have a qualified and reliable company making your home/business safe again.
The Gas Connection has completed thousands of gas leak repair projects in the Denver Metro area, bringing them back to their original safe condition. Often times, we even have these repair jobs completed in one day. We accomplished this many repairs by gaining the trust from our local utility companies, jurisdictions, and inspectors for the past 39 years.
We would like to earn your trust as well and prove that we can be there in your time of need. No matter if you are looking for a gas leak repair or a free inspection, we make sure to use the most cost effective, efficient and professional methods used in the industry today to complete your job.