And can say yes to one of these:
If that’s you, please let us know and we’ll sort out your free gas safety check with a certified Gas Safe registered* engineer and if they spot anything that’s faulty or not safe when they’re there, they’ll disconnect your gas supply before they leave.
If not, you can always arrange your own gas safety check; just make sure you use an engineer who’s on the Gas Safe Register.
*the Gas Safe Register replaced CORGI as the gas registration body in Great Britain and the Isle of Man on 1 April 2009.
What’s carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning got to do with gas?
If your gas appliances haven’t been properly installed or looked after, they can produce deadly carbon monoxide. It’s created when there’s not enough oxygen in the air to completely burn the fossil fuels like gas, coal and wood.
Carbon monoxide is an odourless, colourless and poisonous gas that can escape in your home without you knowing. You can’t see it, taste it or smell it, but it can kill quickly. It can also cause serious long-term health problems, such as brain damage. The people most at risk are children, pregnant women and anyone with breathing or heart problems.
It’s easy to mistake carbon monoxide poisoning for something less serious as the symptoms are similar to that of the flu, food poisoning, viral infections and tiredness. The main symptoms are:
You’re most at risk from carbon monoxide poisoning when you’re asleep, as you might not notice the early symptoms.
You should watch out for these tell-tale signs too:
If you think you or someone else might be affected by carbon monoxide poisoning, you should get out into the open air and get medical help straight away.
Here are our gas safety tips:
It looks and acts like a smoke alarm, but instead of detecting smoke; it makes a sound when it detects carbon monoxide. You can buy one for under £20 at your local DIY store or supermarket; they’re really easy to fit too!
We suggest that you do not buy a ‘black spot’ detector as they only change colour when they pick up carbon monoxide, they won’t make any noise, so won’t wake you up when you’re asleep.
Always check that yours is officially approved to EN 50291 standards before you buy (this replace the British Standard BS7860 in April 2006). It must also have a British or European approval mark on it, like a Kitemark. You should always read your alarm’s instructions too so you fit, check and service it the right way.
You cannot always tell that something’s wrong just by looking at your gas appliance but you should follow the steps in the next question if you spot any of these things:
Do these things straight away:
There are a lot of places you can get help and information on staying safe with gas in your home. We’ve put some of them here, and the Citizen’s Advice Bureau can tell you about others.
Telephone: 0800 1696565
(You’ll find the contact details for your local Citizens Advice bureau (CAB) there)
Energy Savings Trust
Telephone: 0300 123 1234
Energy Supply Ombudsman
Telephone: 0330 440 1624
Royal National Institute for the Blind (RNIB)
Telephone: 0303 123 9999
Action on Hearing Loss
Telephone: 0808 808 0123