Gas ap­pli­ance checks not car­ried out reg­u­larly

Hinckley Times - - NEWS -

HOME­OWN­ERS in the East Mid­lands are putting their lives at risk by leav­ing gas safety on the back burner.

Re­search from Bri­tish Gas found that 40 per cent of home­own­ers in the re­gion last checked their gas ap­pli­ances two or three years ago, or can­not re­mem­ber when.

Only one in four said they had car­ried out a safety check on their gas ap­pli­ances in the past 12 months.

More than a fifth said an an­nual safety check was a low pri­or­ity in re­la­tion to other house­hold bills such as main­te­nance costs.

A quar­ter of all those sur­veyed were un­aware of any health risks as­so­ci­ated with not tak­ing the an­nual check, or do not be­lieve it is life threat­en­ing.

Bri­tish Gas rec­om­mends get­ting all gas ap­pli­ances checked by a Gas Safe-reg­is­tered en­gi­neer once a year, and ser­viced ac­cord­ing to the man­u­fac­turer’s in­struc­tions.

The checks pick up prob­lems such as faulty boil­ers, which can cause gas leaks, ex­plo­sions and car­bon monox­ide poi­son­ing.

Ex­po­sure to car­bon monox­ide can be fa­tal and can cause long-term health prob­lems in­clud­ing brain dam­age.

It is known as the ‘silent killer’, be­cause the gas is odour­less, has no taste and is in­vis­i­ble, some­thing one in ten sur­veyed did not re­alise.

Three in ten home­own­ers in the East Mid­lands do not have a car­bon monox­ide alarm in­stalled in their home, de­spite the fact that they can be eas­ily pur­chased.

Symp­toms of poi­son­ing in­clude headaches, dizzi­ness, nause and breath­less­ness.

Signs an ap­pli­ance may be leak­ing car­bon diox­ide in­clude stains, soot or dis­coloura­tion on or around your boiler, fire or wa­ter heater.

A yel­low or orange pi­lot light on a boiler is an­other po­ten­tial sign of a car­bon monox­ide leak.

It’s also im­por­tant to make sure there are no block­ages in your chimney or flue, and to keep clear air vents in doors, walls and win­dows.

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