It is everyone’s worst nightmare and some us – including me – will have already experienced this.
You return home from work and ‘think’ you can smell gas. You then shout on your partner/parent/child/husband/wife/pet dog to see if they can also smell it. They can’t! Then, half an hour later (after you’ve switched lights on and off at least 10 times and used the hob!!) they CAN smell it!
If you’re still alive (and just to be safe), you call Transco, who send an emergency engineer out to test your system. The engineer will carry out what is known in the industry as a ‘tightness test’ and does indeed detect a leak.
Usually at this point (to the disappointment and dismay of many homeowners), the engineer will disconnect the faulty appliance and ‘cap’ the gas, meaning you are unable to use your gas supply until the source of the leak has been fully detected and repaired.
So, now you have no smell of gas (hooray!), but you also likely have no heating and in some cases no hot water or stove (decidedly not hooray!).
So, what now? Well, if you’re in Edinburgh and the Lothians, you should call the Gas Safety Guy (or another qualified, reputable Gas Safe Registered Engineer, of course) who will perform a full trace and repair, isolate the location of the fault in your system and put it right.
We have performed several of these repairs in recent months and in a lot of cases gas leaks from pipes which are coming under some sort of strain (pipes located under floorboards perhaps being put under pressure, or friction with other pipes, or pipes in places like coat cupboards or utility rooms with high traffic being knocked by other objects).
The issue you may have is that these kinds of jobs are difficult to quote for accurately – it is very tricky to determine how long it might take to detect the source of the leak. But, what price peace of mind?
If you do ever smell gas in your property (or think you do), please please just call Transco, even if it is just to put your mind at rest.