Natural gas is odorless. Many gas companies include odors, such as a rotten egg-like smell, to warn homeowners of a potential leak. Doing so may have saved countless lives over the years. Homes with gas-powered devices typically have some smell during operation, but if you notice the stench growing stronger, you may have a leak on your hands. If you do not have a gas detector installed in your home, you need to learn the signs of a leak yourself.
First and foremost, if you suspect a gas leak, take a look around your home and switch off any electrical devices you have running. If possible, unplug these same devices, too. Once that is done, quickly work your way through the home and open as many windows as possible to increase ventilation. Once done, make sure everyone is out of the house, including animals.
If there is a strong gas leak smell, do not bother looking for the source. Leave that task to the professionals. The stronger the smell, the more powerful the leak, which can be harmful.
Once you’ve left the premises, contact emergency services and your local plumbing/gas company for assistance. While outdoors, do not start your car, a flashlight, or light a cigarette. Any electrical appliances may trigger a spark, which is the last thing you want during a gas leak.
If you’re unsure of who to call, always start with the local fire department. It’s best to have them on standby for potential danger than waiting for something to go wrong. They will notify the gas company, if you have not already.