Using propane gas to heat your home or to run other appliances in your home is safe to do. However there are some precautions that you need to take to ensure that you use it correctly and safely.
First, what is propane? Propane is a gas that is shipped to your home as a liquid. You can get frostbite from touching propane in a liquid state. When the propane is delivered to your home and pumped into your tank it changes to gas vapor.
Propane is environmentally friendly. It is non-toxic and will not harm ground water or soil.
Have you ever opened up a propane tank and catch that horrible smell? Propane in its natural form is odorless and colorless. For safety reasons that smell is added to propane so it will alert you if there is a propane gas leak. The smell has been described as a skunk spray or rotten eggs. If you don’t want to rely on your nose for a propane leak, you can purchase a propane leak detectorand install it in your home as an added measure of safety.
If you do smell propane leaking or the alarm has gone off, follow these steps:
- You will want to keep all sparks and flames away from the area. The means put out any cigarettes and turn off any open flames. Do not turn on your lights, because that can cause a spark and ignite the propane in the air.
- Get out! Leave the building immediately.
- Turn the gas supply off. If it is safe to do so, turn off the main supply valve to your tank.
- Once you are away from the area, you may then report the leak to your propane dealer immediately. If they are not available, call 911 to dispatch the fire department to your home.
- Do not try to go back into your home until a qualified responder says that it is safe to go back in.
- Have your propane dealer then check your appliances and tank before using them again.
- You must remember that propane gas is heavier than air. If there is a leak, it will tend to accumulate near the floor.
This procedure should be taught to all members of your family. Using common sense will help prevent many problems with the use of propane gas in your home.
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