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Is A Gas Heater Safety Check Necessary?
Do you have a gas heater in your residential or commercial property? If yes, this is an excellent investment because the appliance helps in heating your home or business. A gas heater is a more reliable heat source and offers a wide range of benefits when compared to other types of heaters. Anyway, it is always advisable to check your gas heater’s safety.
Gas heater safety is essential to ensure that your gas heater is operating perfectly, thus enhancing the safety of your entire property. This article looks at how to get a gas heater safety check. However, before going into that, let’s look at some of the significant advantages of investing in a gas heater in your property.
Advantages Of A Gas Heater
Although it depends on several factors, a gas heater is a more affordable option than an electric heater. Modern gas heating systems are more efficient and help save on your monthly electric bills.
Clean energy source
Gas is a clean source of energy. As such, the emissions feature primarily small amounts of carbon dioxide and water vapour. It produces less carbon monoxide emissions than wood or coal. Thus, when using gas heaters, you heat your property in a clean, safe, and environmentally friendly manner.
When you invest in a gas heater, you know that your gas lines are running underground. This means they are protected from other outdoor elements and are safe in the event of a storm. You will always have a constant flow of gas, guaranteeing that there is gas at all times.
Offers the right comfort
A gas heating system improves your home’s comfort. It can warm your home quicker than electric heat. You can rest and be sure of enjoying a cosy and warm property.
Improves your home’s value
With a gas heater, the value of your home is drastically improved. It acts as a great selling point since it makes your home more appealing to potential buyers. You sell the home faster at a high price.
How Does A Gas Heater Work?
Gas heaters work by lighting the burners located in their combustion chamber. When the igniter sparks or the light is lit, the resulting heat moves to the heat exchanger. This pushes the air through and raises it to the correct temperatures. The blowers send the air out through the gas heater ducts and into the various rooms in your house or business premises.
Why Is Gas Heater Safety Necessary?
Gas heaters produce CO (Carbon Monoxide) when heating spaces. This includes the central heating units, new heaters, and space heaters. That being said, a dysfunctional gas heating system is a common source of carbon monoxide poisoning in commercial and residential properties.
As a result, it is essential to ensure that a qualified gas fitter does the installation. You should also ensure that it is well maintained to avoid a gas leak and other issues. Unflued gas heaters have a high risk of leaking carbon monoxide that can cause loss of consciousness, shortness of breath, and other environmental health issues.
Inadequate room ventilation and operating exhaust fans at the same time can increase the unsafe levels of carbon monoxide in your room. The risk increases when you are operating a faulty gas heater or a blocked flue.
When Should You Have Gas Safety Checks Done?
It is advisable to have gas safety checks done regularly. You do not have to wait for signs to occur to call your gas fitter to do the safety check. Since a gas-powered heater generates warmth by burning fuel, regular inspection is necessary. You should have the heater checked yearly or when you detect an issue.
You should also ensure that you check the manufacturer’s guide to know how often the gas heater needs to be checked. An annual check-up ensures that your gas heater is working correctly and is safe. The best time to do a gas safety check is during the summer. This is necessary because, during the cold weather conditions, most people are doing safety check-ups.
During the summer, the demand is low, so you can have the gas heater checked at a lower cost. Regular check-ups ensure that carbon monoxide does not build up in your property. This goes a long way in ensuring that carbon monoxide poisoning never occurs on your property.
If you have a new property, you should invest in a carbon monoxide detector to quickly detect the presence of toxic gas when the sensor goes off. During the safety inspection, only ensure that licensed gas fitters do the job.
What Does A Gas Heater Safety Check Involve?
As mentioned above, a gas heater safety check should only be done by registered gas fitters. They test your heater to ensure that it is safe to continue operating in your home or business. The safety check ensures that the heater is appropriately set and well-adjusted to allow the gas to burn in the right way.
The check also ensures that the gas heater is right for the room that it is installed in. Moreover, they also check that the appliance is physically stable, fitted securely, and connected to the gas pipe. Your professional also checks that all the safety devices for your gas heater are working correctly and there are no issues with electrical safety.
They also check that all the air vents and flues are working correctly. A gas safety check up can also go to the extent of checking how the installation of the heater is done. In this case, the gas fitter checks that the installation was done correctly and to standard. They visually inspect the pipework to ensure it is intact. They also test the pipework to ensure that there are no leaks. Your professional performs a more specific safety check by undertaking additional detailed tests according to the manufacturer’s instructions. They analyse combustion exhaust gases to make sure that the heater is burning gas safely. The testing includes checking for signs of distress or heat, the effectiveness of the gaskets and seals.
Professional gas fitters also check the cleanliness of the heat exchangers. Depending on their work during the safety checking process, they might provide you with a gas safety record. If you live in a home or office with a shared flue, you should also ensure that your neighbours also have the property checked for the same.
Safety Tips When Using A Gas Heater
In addition to the regular safety checks, you should also ensure that you use the gas appliance in the recommended way. You should check all the safety measures required to ensure that it does not become a hazard in your home. Here are some of the safety measures to apply in the process:
Read gas heater safety instructions
Before you start using the heater on your property, make sure you go through all the instructions provided. Ensure that you also re-read the instructions to understand all the best practices to apply when using your gas heater.
Check that all the elements are okay
Another significant step to ensure that your gas heater is still safe for use is to check that all its components are working perfectly and connected. Check that the gas bottle is safely secured, there are no leaks in the pipes, and ensure the regulator is maintained well. Always check for signs of malfunction when using the heater.
Use the right heater in the right place
Make sure you are using suitable gas heaters in the right places. For instance, you should never use indoor gas heaters for outdoor spaces and vice versa. If you use outdoor gas heaters for indoor spaces, you expose yourself and your loved ones to carbon monoxide and increased fire risks. To reduce safety risks, you should never extend power cords and hoses through your doorways.
Light the heater and turn it off safely
When using your gas heater, make sure you light it up correctly. Start by turning on the lighter or match and then the gas supply. As you switch it off, you should first shut the gas off. Always remember that you should never move the regulator when the heater is still on.
Always use the heater in well-ventilated areas
Make sure you open your window from time to time to allow carbon monoxide to flow out and allow oxygen in. This is necessary because extended exposure to carbon monoxide is fatal.
Do not move the heater while using it
You should never move the heater when using it. This can lead to gas leaks or even explosions. To move the heater, first, turn it off and wait for it to cool down before you proceed to move it.
Keep a safe distance from the heater
No matter how appealing the warmth from the heater may be, always keep a safe distance from the appliance. Never use or store flammable chemicals near the heater when using it.
Do You Require An Annual Gas Heater Safety Check?
Although it might not be a legal necessity for homeowners to have the annual gas heater safety check, it is advisable to do it. You need regular safety checks because of the risks involved. All gas appliances emit carbon monoxide that is fatal. Regular safety inspections ensure that the gas appliance is in perfect working condition and less likely to be a health hazard.
If you are a rental provider, you must ensure that your properties are safe. Thus, you have to perform annual gas safety checks. You need a gas safety certificate that proves that all gas appliances used on your property are safe. To get this certificate, you should work with a qualified gas fitter to perform the heater safety check. It shows that all the gas heaters are inspected and the findings of the inspection.
Hire Professional Gas Fitters To Do A Safety Check
Performing a gas heater safety check is not an easy job. It needs to be done by a highly qualified gas fitter. Thus, you need to hire the best gas fitter in your area to do the job for the best results. They have the right tools and knowledge on how to perform a thorough inspection to ensure that your appliance is safe for use and there is no gas leak. After the safety check, you have peace of mind that the gas heater is safe for use.