With cooler temperatures just around the corner, Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) is offering customers a free in-home safety inspection of their gas appliances. Inspections help ensure that gas appliances are operating safely and efficiently, which helps reduce risk and energy consumption. Last year, from October-December, PG&E gas service technicians performed 102,543 safety checks and/or pilot relights throughout the company’s 70,000-square-mile service territory.
During the inspection, a local gas service technical will examine all natural gas appliances, including gas furnaces to check for leaks, and relight pilot lights. The entire inspection can take anywhere from 15 minutes to 45 minutes depending on the number of appliances and their location.
In general, properly installed and maintained natural gas appliances produce very little to no carbon monoxide and do not pose a threat to safety. However, we shouldn’t take for granted that all gas appliances are in perfect working order. Unlike natural gas, carbon monoxide is odorless and can often go undetected. The best way to ensure that appliances are operating safety is to have them inspected by placing a call to have a free inspection scheduled.
To help provide peace of mind and confidence in the safe use of their gas appliances, PG&E suggests that customers schedule and inspection by calling 1-800-743-5000. PG&E’s gas service technician will check for leaks and will verify a blue flame, which indicates complete combustion and that the appliance is in good working condition. A lazy, yellow or white flame indicates that the appliance is not functioning properly and could pose a safety risk.
Home Heating Safety Tips
* Install carbon monoxide detectors to warn when concentration levels are high.
o As of 2011, all California single-family homes are required to have carbon monoxide detectors.
o Make sure all carbon monoxide detectors are installed near sleeping areas and common areas.
o Replace the batteries at least twice a year.
o Check expiration dates – most carbon monoxide detectors have a shelf life of only five to seven years.
* Never use products inside the home that generate dangerous levels of carbon monoxide, such as generators, outdoor grills and propane heaters.
* Never use cooking devices such as ovens or stoves for home heating purposes.
* When using the fireplace to stay warm, make sure the flue is open so that the byproducts of combustion can vent safely through the chimney.
* Make sure water heaters and other natural gas appliances have proper ventilation.
* As part of customers’ gas service, PG&E representatives are available to inspect gas appliances and make sure they are working safely.
* Click here <https://www.pge.com/en_US/residential/save-energy-money/resources/winter-tips/winter-tips.page> for more winter heating safety and savings tips.
If you detect carbon monoxide in your home, you should get out immediately and call 911. If a PG&E customer ever smells the distinctive “rotten egg” odor of natural gas in or around their home or business they should immediately call 911 and PG&E at 1-800-743-5000.