Got a modern gas fire installed in your home? Well, aren’t you lucky! There’s nothing quite like the feeling of curling up by a warm fire when it’s cost outside, is there?
Gas fires are an attractive feature to have in the home and a great source of heat, but it’s essential to be aware of the safety aspects too. Here we’ve shared a quick guide to the potential dangers of having a gas fire and gas safety tips to prevent them from appearing out of the blue.
Most safety problems with gas fires occur as a result of poor installation. If your gas fire isn’t installed in a suitable location or there’s a fault with its connection to the main gas supply, you could be at risk.
Never attempt to install a modern gas fire yourself. It’s work that should only ever be carried out by a qualified and experienced Gas Safe registered engineer. Check a heating engineer’s credentials and Gas Safe ID card before hiring them for the job.
Along with keeping those living in your property safe, having your gas fire installed correctly will be a requirement of your home insurance policy. If the gas fire is poorly installed and something goes wrong, your house insurance may be void, meaning you aren’t able to make a claim.
It’s a good idea to book an annual gas fire service with a Gas Safe registered engineer. During the service, the gas engineer will take your appliance apart to inspect each of its elements and ensure everything is in good working condition. They will then test your gas fire is burning correctly, check the safety features and ensure the chimney is clear for waste gases to be safely emitted.
Some heating engineers will also clean your gas fire as part of the gas fire check.
Having your gas fire service will give you the peace of mind that your appliance is operating safely. It also provides the opportunity for your gas engineer to identify any small problems and fix them before they become more serious and expensive. Your heating engineer will be able to provide advice and quotes on any follow-up gas fire repairs and gas fire maintenance that is required.
Keep in mind that a gas fire service is not the same as an annual gas safety check. It’s an additional service that provides a more in-depth inspection of your gas fire. If your gas fire is under warranty, you’ll likely require an annual gas fire service for the guarantee to continue.
Before booking a gas fire service, it’s wise to do a quick Google search for a local engineer. You can do this by typing in something like ‘gas fire service near me.’ This should bring up local heating engineers who you can gather quotes from to get a better idea of the gas fire service cost. As a guideline, you should be looking to pay around £45-£60.
If your gas fire isn’t installed correctly or there’s a serious fault, it could potentially produce carbon monoxide – a very poisonous gas. It’s known as the silent killer, as it is completely odourless and can, therefore, go unnoticed.
Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include:
If you believe your gas fire is leaking carbon monoxide and you experience any of these symptoms, you must seek medical attention immediately. Carbon monoxide poisoning can be fatal, so the sooner you are seen by a medical professional, the better.
One of the best ways you can identify a carbon monoxide leak is to have a carbon monoxide detector installed in any room that contains a gas appliance.
Other signs of a carbon monoxide leak include:
If you believe there’s a carbon monoxide leak in your home, you need to leave the property immediately. If you’re able to safely switch off the gas appliance and leave windows and doors open then do so. Once outside, call the gas emergency number 0800 111 999 to report a suspected carbon monoxide leak. They will then visit your property to investigate and resolve the problem. Do not return to your home, until you’ve been told it’s safe to do so.
We’d always recommend putting out any type of fire before going to bed or leaving the house. The problem with leaving a gas fire burning is the deadly threat of carbon monoxide poisoning. Always switch off your appliance to be safe.
If you have young children, you need to be extra vigilant when using a gas fire in your home. A glass window on a modern gas fire can reach temperatures of 200°C within minutes of turning your gas fire on. At this temperature, burns can occur with just the slightest touch. Install a safety screen to reduce the risk of a child burning themselves on the gas fire and make sure there’s a lock on the door.
Teach your children the importance of fire safety and encourage them to keep away from the gas fire. Never leave them unsupervised with a gas fire lit.
Regular servicing and gas fire maintenance are both essential to good gas fire safety practice but as you’ll know, they often don’t come cheap. One way you can potentially save money is by taking out gas fire protection. If you have an existing home care policy, check the terms and conditions to see if you’re already protected.
We hope you’ve found our gas safety tips useful. If you have any questions or want to find out more about our customisable boiler, heating and home care plans, get in touch with the Hometree team on 0330 912 4843. Alternatively, get a quote online.
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