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My boiler smells of gas - What should I do?

My boiler smells of gas – What should I do?

If you’ve read our other blogs over the years, there’s always useful advice about the health of your boiler and the technology that can improve your life. But this one is a little different – it’s about what to do if your boiler smells of gas. If you’re here because you can smell gas around your boiler, read on.

First things first – if you smell gas, and you’re sure you haven’t left a ring of your hob or a gas fire turned on without it being lit, there must be a leak somewhere.

If the smell is stronger close to the boiler, there’s a good chance that the leak is either in the boiler itself or with the pipework connecting it. It’s vital that you act fast.

1. DO NOT smoke or switch on lights or electrical items

There’s always the risk of a spark whenever a switch is activated, and in a room filled with gas, that could cause an explosion. Smoking and vaping are also risky, so don’t do it until you’re outdoors and far away from where you can smell the gas.

2. Open windows and doors

Open as many windows and doors as you can around the house. Letting gas out and fresh air in makes the risk of explosion much smaller.

3. If you can, isolate the gas

The main gas valve is usually located next to the meter, and should be easily visible. If your meter is in a locked box, open it up and switch off the valve.

That will stop any more gas from entering your home. If you don’t know where the meter is, it is usually on an outside wall, under the stairs, under the kitchen sink or in the garage. Don’t waste too much time searching for it though – go straight to 4 if you can’t find it.

4. Call 1800 205050

This is Gas Networks Ireland’s 24-hour emergency number. They will be able to send out an engineer to locate the leak and make sure it’s made safe. Ideally, you should phone using a mobile phone far away from the smell, or from a neighbour’s phone.

Remember, just because you think your leak is coming from the boiler, it doesn’t necessarily mean that’s the case – it could be coming from beneath floorboards, from pipework or even from a neighbouring home.

The engineers will have the correct tools to detect the leak. On the rare occasions when you can’t reach them, you can call 999 or 112 if you think there’s a risk to life.

5. If you need a new boiler, call the experts

The emergency gas team will only trace the source of the leak and make it safe. Actually fixing or replacing it will be the responsibility of the owner of that part of the system, which could be you, your landlord, the local authority or Gas Networks Ireland, for example.

If the fault is traced back to your boiler, it’s time to get a new one. There are very good reasons to replace your boiler even if it isn’t leaking, but if there’s a fault, it becomes essential.

At Duffy Heating, our engineers will be able to advise you on the size and type of boiler you need, and to fit it safely, quickly for a good price.

Why not walk through our boiler estimator tool to find out what you can expect to pay?

Published: 13 December 2021

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