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Risks of unsafe appliances

Unsafe gas appliances can put your life in danger

In order to stay fully gas safe in your property, you’ll need to be mindful of these potentially dangerous consequences of having poorly maintained or faulty gas appliances.

Gas leaks

Gas leaks can occur from faulty appliances and pipework. Whilst gas is not poisonous like carbon monoxide (CO), leaks can lead to fires or explosions. A distinctive odorant is added to the gas to make it detectable – you can usually smell this briefly any time you turn a gas hob on. If you think you can smell gas, take action and call your regional gas emergency number which can be found on our what to do in a gas emergency page.

If you have any signs of damage or corrosion (rust, green discolouration) on your gas pipework or you suspect a gas leak, make sure you contact a Gas Safe registered engineer to check it out – it could cause a leak if left unchecked. Any such check should involve a tightness test to ensure there are no gas leaks and a visual inspection of the installation to check that it is in good condition.

Fires and explosions

By its very nature gas is highly combustible. Safe appliances burn gas in a controlled manner to help us heat our homes and cook our food. Should gas leak from a faulty appliance or pipework, it can spread quickly and there is a risk of it accidentally igniting causing a fire or explosion, with potentially devastating results.

Carbon monoxide poisoning

Find out more information on this on our CO poisoning page, but carbon monoxide poisoning is another potentially deadly consequence of having poorly maintained or unsafe gas appliances in your home.

If you think you smell gas or suspect carbon monoxide poisoning take action and call 0800 111 999 (England, Wales and Scotland) immediately. Find out more information on what to do in a gas emergency including your regional emergency numbers. Remember – one of the best ways to stay safe is to ensure that your gas appliances are serviced regularly and checked once a year.