Every year, we hear news reports about deadly explosions, never thinking that it may also happen to us. But how do these explosions happen? What are the signs that appear right before things go horribly wrong, and what do we do if there’s a gas or water leak? In this article, some of Anta Plumbing’s finest Toronto plumbers will explain how to keep your family and home safe.
How Do Gas and Water Leaks Occur?
With global warming on the increase, natural disasters are more common than ever. Homeowners face risks such as severe storms, floods, and tornados. In winter, snowstorms can lead to frozen pipes and power outages. Man-made emergencies, such as carbon monoxide poisoning and fires can also occur. Knowing what to do in an emergency situation can help keep your family and home safe.
While prevention is the best defense, it is not always possible. Your best bet would be to install carbon monoxide detectors on every level of your home, and to change the batteries at least every 6 months. A carbon monoxide should be installed near every bedroom, to ensure that it can be heard by all.
It’s also important to know where all the utility mains are located, and how they are operated, as this is crucial to household safety. Knowing how to do this can help decrease the damage to your property in the event of an gas or water leakage emergency. Educate each member of your household on the location and operation of all main electrical, gas and water switches.
In the Event of a Gas Leak
Once your gas has been shut off, it can take a few days to restore it, therefore, you should only turn it off if you detect a gas leak. A gas leak can be detected by observing spinning wheels on the gas meter, and by the the rotten eggs smell that is so distinct of carbon monoxide. Proper handling of gas is crucial to preventing explosions during a gas leak. Here’s how:
1. Shut off the main valve, which should be next to your gas meter, by turning it one-quarter turn using a crescent wrench.
2. Open all doors and windows.
3. Avoid using any matches, candles, lighters or any other open flames, and do not switch on any appliances or electrical switches.
4. Do NOT turn the gas back on, but call the local gas utility company right away.
In the Event of a Water Leak
Every year, we attend to water leaks that caused thousands of dollars in property damages. Water leaks can happen when a hot water heater fails, or when a frozen pipe bursts, for instance. It is crucial to avoid water coming in contact with electrical wiring, as it may cause electrocution. Whenever there’s a major leak in your home, shut off the water supply right away. Here are the steps to take:
1. Close the main water shut-off (the red and yellow wheel), which is usually located in the garage, basement or alley.
2. If the water level is rising rapidly, shut off your electrical supply too, in order to prevent water entering your outlets.
3. Call Anta Plumbing right away.