Actions for the smell of gas in the boiler room: what to do when a characteristic odor is detected

Alexey Dedyulin
Checked by a specialist: Alexey Dedyulin
Author: Vladislav Bratsuev
Last update: December 2019

Have you ever filed in a situation where a suspicious smell appeared from a gas boiler? If it seems, then it does not seem! Gas is widely distributed for domestic purposes.

More than once we saw in news programs how his leak became the cause of poisoning, asphyxiation, and even explosions with victims. The correct actions for the smell of gas in the boiler room will help you avoid the listed catastrophic and negative situations.

We will talk about how to identify a leak and pinpoint its cause. You will learn how to proceed if the entry of blue fuel into an enclosed space is detected. Our recommendations on the proper operation of gas equipment and the prevention of leaks will ensure the safety of you, households, and property.

Signs and causes of gas leakage

The most common gas in use is methane; it is supplied through a gas pipeline. Since natural methane is odorless, it is odorized - supplemented with gaseous compounds that do not affect “combustibility” and flammability. But thanks natural gas odorants we can sense the presence of gas in a confined space.

A sharp characteristic smell is the first sign of gas spreading through the room. Gas can be heard in some cases. Each gas supply system operates under pressure. If you leak, you can hear a whistle or hiss.

Natural gas burns
Natural gas is odorless. To detect leakage, odorants are used - additives with a characteristic unpleasant smell of rotten eggs

Gas is completely invisible to human eyes. However, this will not be a problem to visually identify the leak. To begin with, we must assume where the gas comes from. If the intended place is chosen correctly, then when smearing it with soapy water, bubbles will appear.

It is harmful to breathe gas vapor - the head starts to hurt immediately, dry mouth and a feeling of suffocation appear. That is why in case of unreasonable deterioration of well-being, the first thing to check is gas equipment. It often happens that a gas leak is a real cause of poor health.

The exit of gas from pipes in most cases causes not domestic, but professional shortcomings associated with poor-quality installation of equipment.

Consider the main reasons why a gas boiler may smell like gas:

  • Improper equipment operation.
  • Internal connections of the boiler loose.
  • The nut of the connecting gas hose was loose or the thread was worn on it.
  • Crack in the rubber hose.
  • The boiler installation technology has been violated.
  • The boiler is malfunctioning.
  • The gas tap has already worked out its time, so the supply of blue fuel does not completely shut off.
  • Deterioration of a sealing ring in the gas valve.
  • The gasket in front of the gas hose is torn or loose.

Repairing a gas boiler on your own, alas, is not always possible. Yes, if the malfunction is noticeable and simple, there are no questions. However, only a foreman from a gas supplying organization with whom a contract has been concluded for servicing and supplying gaseous fuel can cope with a complex breakdown.

Leak detection

The method for determining the leak location is extremely simple. All you need to do is dissolve the soap in water and whip up the foam. A brush is taken, the solution is applied to the suspected problem areas. First of all, gas pipes, faucet and connection points between the boiler and the meter are checked.

At the point of leakage, the solution will begin to foam. With a strong leak, there will be many bubbles. If the bubbles inflate slowly and they are small - look for other places gas leak. Yes, there was a depressurization, but you need to check all the equipment. In the place of depressurization, a characteristic whistle may be present.

Gas pipe is on
At the point of leak, gas can ignite from the slightest spark. You can’t strike matches or a lighter, even turn on the lights or just a flashlight - the gas will explode. If there is no way to shut off the fuel supply, leave the room immediately and call the emergency

If there is a smell in the boiler room, it is imperative to identify a malfunction of the gas boiler. If the pungent odor comes from the boiler itself, you will have to find out what is wrong.

If there is a strong smell in the back of the boiler, there may be a problem in the shut-off valve. If the boiler is turned off, but the smell is present, it is most likely the source is the hose and its connection.

If the smell intensified when removing the boiler cover, then the problem is a possible depressurization of the internal gas pipeline.

Leak identified: what to do?

Natural gas can be a serious threat. He himself has neither color nor smell, but is characterized by psychotropic effects. A person may not pay attention to a new smell and not take timely measures.

What to do if it smells threateningly gas from a gas boiler? The main thing is not to panic. Hasty, hasty actions can lead to serious, often irreversible, consequences.

Window in a boiler room with a gas boiler
Plastic windows contribute to the rapid accumulation of gas. Their airtight seals interfere with the natural flow of air from the street. When leaving home, be sure to leave the windows ventilated.

Basic procedure for a gas leak:

  1. Shut off the gas supply, if possible.
  2. Open all windows and doors to ventilate the room.
  3. Do not use electricity or open flames in a gassed room.
  4. Leave the danger zone.
  5. Report hazard gas service.

People should be taken out of the building, and take care of pets. Only after leaving the danger zone can you call the emergency service.

Gas shutoff

Your actions depend on where the gas comes from.If the cause is an extinguished fire and an open gas control valve, this is the easiest option. You just need to shut off the gas supply. If the pipeline is damaged, the valve is shut off, through which gas flows into this pipeline.

Compulsory ventilation

The boiler room should be quickly ventilated to prevent the formation of an explosive mixture. If an explosion does occur, then open doors and windows will help reduce damage.

After making sure that the gas is no longer flowing, it is enough to ventilate the room for 30 minutes. This time is enough to replace the air with clean air.

Do not ignite electricity, do not allow sparks

Even an electric spark can become a source of ignition. This is enough to ignite the gas in the room, followed by an explosion. To prevent this scenario, after detecting a gas leak, you can not only turn on, but also turn off electrical devices and pull the plug from the outlet.

Gas boiler exploded
Household gas explodes if its concentration in the room reaches 5-15%

Please note, each time you turn it on or off, small sparks appear in the places of contacts. If a light is burning in a gas-fired boiler room, it is safer to leave it on than off. Shutting down may cause sparks.

Such situations can occur in kitchens, since wall-mounted gas boilers are often installed here. The refrigerator is the most dangerous from an electrical point of view. The fact is that in it the compressor periodically turns on and off. The process is accompanied by a spark. It is safest to turn off the electricity in the whole house or apartment.

Alert Center Awareness

When informing the alarm center, the following information should be provided:

  • What happened (smell, explosion, visible damage).
  • Where the smell of gas is noticed or where the accident occurred (in the basement, indoors, in the boiler room).
  • The presence of taps to shut off the pipeline leading to the leak.
  • What electrical equipment works indoors.
  • The presence of sources of open flame (stove or fireplace).
  • When the leak was detected.
  • Your contact details.

If, after shutting off the gas supply and ventilating the room, the gas concentration has not decreased, it is urgent to evacuate people from the house.

Gas boiler inlet taps
A gas tap (yellow) shutting off the supply of blue fuel is usually located immediately near the boiler. Your task is to quickly block it, and not look for a leak +

No matter how strange it may sound, there are many people who, due to negligence or ignorance, light matches. They argue their actions with a desire to discover the place where the gas comes from. If the methane concentration is too high, even an explosion is possible.

It doesn't matter when you detected a gas leak day or late night - call the emergency service. If the valve is closed, but the gas continues to flow, all people must leave the room before the emergency workers arrive.

The damage caused by a gas accident is hundreds of times more critical than a fire. Unconscious actions of one person more than once became the cause of the destruction of apartment buildings.

Resolving the problem and further threats

Work with gas equipment should only be carried out by a competent master of gas facilities, certified to work with gas equipment. DIY gas boiler repair is not recommended. Depending on the place of depressurization, a way to eliminate the leak is selected.

Repair gas boiler
Gas pipe defects cannot be repaired by yourself. Using a tool can spark a spark and cause an explosion

In the event of a leak on the threaded connection, it should be untwisted, the remaining sealant, gaskets and winding should be removed. Old gaskets and rings are replaced with new ones.

After assembling the compound, a check is carried out using a soap solution. If a leak is detected in the hose, it must be replaced.

Standard boiler faults

The smell of gas appears when it is incomplete combustion. There may be several reasons:

  • Incorrect installation of the nozzles (yellow or red flame).
  • The air supply adjustment (yellow or red flame) is down.
  • Faulty fan operation sensor (boiler operation lock).
  • Too low operating fan speed (boiler shutdown).
  • Heat exchanger clogged (operation blocked or too low heating).

When repairing a gas boiler with a gas leak, special care should be taken to manipulate parts and assemblies.

Safety Prevention

Accidents must be prevented, otherwise the consequences will then have to be eliminated.

Compliance with the rules of prevention is the key to safety:

  1. All gas appliances should be purchased intact with warranty from the manufacturer. Appropriate certificates must be attached to the equipment.
  2. If you need to install or configure a gas boiler, always contact the gas workers, with whom you should conclude an agreement on equipment maintenance and gas supply. Masters must have permission to work of this type.
  3. The master servicing the unit must periodically inspect gas equipment.
  4. Gas equipment must always be clean.
  5. Check the condition regularly chimney gas boiler and the performance of the smoke exhaust system.

To prevent leakage, buy a gas leak detector. The gas analyzer instantly reacts to the appearance of a toxic substance in the surrounding space.

Gas Leak Detector
Domestic gas analyzers are distinguished by sensitivity equal to gas meters. The assortment presented to the consumer has stationary and mobile devices, devices with sound and light alarms

The gas analyzer is installed in the boiler room or in the kitchen near the gas column or boiler. More expensive models are equipped with a function to automatically turn off the fuel when the gas concentration in the room is exceeded. The slightest leak is detected by sensors, after which the gas supply to the combustion chamber is blocked.

The owners of the gas boiler are responsible for the general condition of the equipment. They can clean all components from soot, for the care of which you do not need to disassemble the case. It is impossible to replace the instruments yourself; all work must be carried out by fitters and gas workers from the gas supplying organization.

The owners are responsible for the safety of operation between scheduled maintenance of gas equipment. Maintenance should be done every 36 months. For used equipment covered by the warranty, maintenance is recommended every year.

Conclusions and useful video on the topic

An effective way to detect gas leaks:

If you have at least a hundredth boiler in a row, always read the instruction manual. Perhaps the manufacturer came up with something new. The best repair method is to call a gasman. Blue fuel jokes are bad. Do not save on qualified service. Excessive frugality can turn sideways.

Do you want to share your own experience in detecting a leak and taking timely actions that prevented catastrophic consequences? Want to share useful information on the topic of an article? Write comments, please, in the form below the block, post photos and ask questions.

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