If you have recently moved into a home that is heated with propane, you can benefit from learning some safety measures. Although propane tanks are, virtually, puncture resistant and the heating oil is unlikely to ignite if it leaks out, propane can still cause cause injuries or damage if it comes into contact with open flames. It can also cause painful burns to a person's skin if they touch it, since it is stored at such a low temperature.
Here are some basic warning signs when dealing with propane.
The manufacturers of propane add a chemical to give it a distinct odor. The scent resembles rotten eggs or sulfur. If you ever smell an odor like this, immediately check next to your heating source to see if there are any indications of burning. If you have an extinguisher and feel comfortable using it, douse any open flames with the agent inside of the extinguisher.
Do not attempt to turn off the heating unit, since the heat could cause injuries. Go outside and call your utility provider immediately. They will come to your home and inspect the premises. Once they identify where the leak is, they can start to repair the system.
It is common to get sick from time to time, but this usually occurs gradually and includes symptoms that you have dealt with in the past. If you suddenly feel out of your element and are experiencing dizziness, watering eyes, difficulty seeing, extreme headaches, or loss of muscle control, seek assistance immediately. You may have a gas leak in your home and these symptoms are classic signs of carbon monoxide poisoning.
Visible Damage Or Leaks
Be aware of your propane tank's surroundings and the lines that run to it. If you see heating oil leaking out of the tank or if part of the gas line looks broken, do not attempt to make repairs yourself. Touching the tank or line with your bare hands could injure you badly if propane is present on the surface. Move away from the tank and call your utility provider immediately. After they repair the system, continue to monitor the condition of your equipment by viewing it on a regular basis.
One more safety measure to consider is having a propane leak detector installed in your home. One can be purchased at a hardware store for a small fee. Being aware of your surroundings and how you feel, plus following all of the previous tips, will help keep you safe.