- Gas leaks are not to be joked with, especially propane leaks. They are very flammable and toxic and can cause explosions. Thus, detecting propane leaks is a skill you must develop to avert danger. If you feel that your propane gas is leaking, immediately alert the appropriate authorities and vacate the premises.
How to detect propane leaks
There are sure signs that are present when your propane tanks are leaking.
● You begin to smell gas
Usually, there is a distinct pungent smell as propane gas is mixed with a compound that has a tangy rotten egg-like smell. This is done specifically for leaks.
● The gas finishes quicker
When your gas begins to finish faster than it usually does, suspect propane gas leaks.
● Gas burns less efficiently
You begin to notice weaker flames, less heat, and overall mediocre performance from the propane gas.
What to do when you notice a propane gas leak
Once you notice any of the above signs, there are things you must do
1. Do the bubble test
If you suspect a leak, there is a test you can conduct called the “bubbles test.” The first thing you do is switch off the propane tank, then use a special solution that detects leaks, or use soapy water instead.
The next thing to do is put the solution of soapy water between the connection of the cylinder valve and regulator outlet. Then slowly put on the cylinder valve. If you notice bubbles, there is most likely a leak.
To confirm, repeat the test. If the bubbles appear again, immediately shut the gas supply off and leave that area.
2. Take precautions
When the leak is confirmed, immediately put off all light switches and appliances to reduce any spark incident. Do not even use your phone in that area just to be safe.
3. Phone 911
You can call 911, the local fire department, or the company that supplies your propane. Ensure you do this after you and your household leave the premises.
4. Keep away till the leak is fixed
Detecting a propane leak and reporting it is just the very first step. Do your part by staying away no matter how much you want to come back.
5. Schedule a routine inspection after it is fixed
Even after the leak has been fixed, always remember to schedule another inspection to make sure the leak hasn’t reappeared. Also, this is a precautionary measure to ensure your safety.
Propane gas detector
Propane is a high-density gas heavier than air, so when there is a leak, it will collect close to the ground. So if you have a propane gas tank, it will be best to position the gas detector near the floor.
The sensor should not be located near a ventilation duct that brings air into the room since the air is not the same. Instead, it should be positioned closer to the ventilation outlet as that is more characteristic of the air in the room and will help in detecting propane leaks better.