AccuServ Heating and Air Conditioning

Is It Always Serious If I Smell Gas?

December 11, 2019

If you smell gas in your home, you might not be sure how serious it is without knowing the source. If your home’s boiler, fireplace or central heating system runs on gas, any one of them could be the site of a gas leak. It could also be coming from another source, such as your garbage, sewage or piping, or a dead animal somewhere in your home.

So smelling gas is not always serious, but you should treat every instance as if it was serious. Gas leaking from any of these systems usually smells like rotten eggs or sulfur, which can also come from an issue with your home’s electricity. An electrical issue that produces this smell can be as dangerous as a gas leak.

Here is what you can do to determine if your appliances are leaking gas, and what to do if you think they are.

Signs Your Home Has a Gas Leak

If the smell of gas is somewhat light (or if you think the smell might be something else), you can try to locate the source of the gas smell in your home.

First, rule out any system in your house that uses gas — your furnace, water heater, gas fireplace, oven or stove, and so on. Go to those appliances and see if you can detect any of these signs that they have a gas leak:

  • Smell of rotten eggs and sulfur coming from your furnace, boiler, gas fireplace
  • Sound of hissing coming from the area
  • Dead patches of grass on your lawn where your gas line is
  • You feel dizzy, tired, nauseous, and have a headache while you’re inside your home

If you detect any of these signs coming from your gas appliances, there is a good chance that you have a gas leak and need to take immediate action.

If you don’t smell gas but are experiencing those symptoms, there may be dangerous carbon monoxide building up in your home. Leave now and contact emergency services.

What To Do When You Smell Gas

If you smell gas, particularly if you find that the source is your furnace, you should immediately leave the home and contact emergency services. Whether the source is a gas leak, a carbon monoxide leak, or an electrical issue the potential for a serious issue is too great to ignore.

Here is a list of steps to follow if you think there is a gas leak:

  1. Immediately evacuate everyone in the house
  2. Do not use anything that can produce a spark or flame
  3. Open windows and doors as you got to provide ventilation
  4. Turn off your gas meter if you know where it is
  5. Call emergency services to inform them of the issues
  6. Tell your neighbors in case they might be affected as well
  7. Wait to be told it is safe to return to your home

Once gas service to the home has been cut off, our repair experts should be able to inspect the furnace or other home appliances to determine if it is the source of the leak. If you have any immediate concerns, call emergency services right away and get somewhere safe.