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Gas Heater Fire Safety
When the temperature falls, gas heaters and warmers are there to help you survive through the weather. It is super convenient and makes things easier for everyone. However, as a gas heater is powered by natural gas, it requires a lot of care and concern.
If not handled properly, it can even blow up and be hazardous to your safety. Gas heaters are often the first choice for many people, but as they have safety issues, i.e., they can explode and cause terrible consequences, some people avoid them.
Gas heater explosions typically happen in winter or in areas where the weather is generally frosty because, of course, these are the areas where heaters are primarily used. In this article, you will examine the types of heaters that are safe, why some gas heaters end up exploding, and much more. Keep reading!
Why Are Gas Heaters Used In The First Place?
It might seem obvious that heaters are used to help families keep warm, but there are additional reasons people use heaters. Here are the most common reasons gas heaters are used.
Heating Up Cold Environments
Of course, heating units are typically used in cold environments, where people have trouble carrying on their routine activities because of the cold. For this purpose, multiple heating systems have been in use for years now. The only change you might see is in their manufacturing and quality.
Heating Water for Regular Use
You might also use these gas-based heaters to warm water for performing daily house activities such as showering or washing dishes. Gas heaters generally heat up water faster compared to electric heaters, which can be very important on cold mornings when you need to quickly take a warm shower.
Gas heaters may be your best option if you have higher heat requirements in your home. These heaters are not only handy and less expensive but are also environmentally friendly because they use a reliable resource to function. However, they do need proper maintenance once they are installed.
Whether you want to heat up your lounge, kitchen, or bedroom, these heaters can be your go-to option. You can also buy portable ones if you want something easy to carry.
Other than all this, gas heaters are helpful even at freezing temperatures where no other heating system comes to rescue. You can operate these from both bottled LPG gas and natural gas. Moreover, some heaters have a two-sided heat distribution system that warms your surroundings smoothly and evenly.
Other types of heating systems exist, but most do not bear much popularity. This is due to the lack of features and functions usually available in gas heaters.
Which Heaters Are Useful And Safe?
There is a long list of heating systems available on the market, and finding the perfect one isn’t an easy task. Some of the heating types may include electric heaters, wood heaters, patio heaters, and gas heaters. If you have any of these, you may admire how reliable and safe heaters can be. However, there is always room for mishaps, so don’t ever forget to be careful while using them.
Patio heaters are long pyramid and mushroom-like heating units that best suit your outdoor environment. These kinds of heaters come with propane tanks (a sort of fuel) which is highly expensive compared to natural gas. Furthermore, you need to change this tank repeatedly, which makes it hard to manage these types of heaters.
Another available heating option is known as the water heater, which comes in handy when you need to maintain a warm water temperature daily. Although heaters are primarily made to deal with cold, they also maintain your water temperature. Using these gas bottles is super-convenient and friendlier for you as they provide maximum output with minimum resources.
The different types of heaters each come with a few limitations. For example, water heaters are helpful in heating water solely. Patio heaters are not easy to operate because of the repeated replacement of their tanks. While gas heaters don’t have these particular limitations, they do need special attention.
Reasons For The Explosion Of Gas Heaters
Gas heaters are often the go-to option when you want to make your home warm and cosy when living in a cold area. Although they come with more benefits than some of the other available options, they can be problematic if not maintained properly.
You might have heard about them exploding because people usually ignore taking precautions and maintaining their heaters like they are supposed to. To know further about this, here are some reasons why gas heating units blast.
Usually, people do not pay attention to servicing their heating systems and then often find themselves in hot water (pun intended). If you do not check your gas heater at regular intervals, not only will this affect the functioning of the heater, but it can also result in the explosion of your unit at some point.
Well, this is one of the deadliest consequences of poor maintenance. Apart from this, a careless attitude towards the upkeep of any tool, machine, or equipment present in your home will turn it into mere garbage. For example, your heaters’ efficiency will not be as effective as it was before if you don’t get them serviced or cleaned.
Regular maintenance of the heating unit is crucial so that any problem in the system can be identified earlier and solved beforehand. Thus, it’s a good idea to hire a qualified gas fitter to check your heating system thoroughly at least every two years. Moreover, some gas heaters become too old to maintain anymore. Such a heater is nothing but a threat to your home as it can quickly turn into a ticking time bomb.
Usage in an Inappropriate Setting
Sometimes, inappropriate usage can also take you towards unwanted consequences. For example, people often make the mistake of using outdoor heaters inside their homes which is a huge threat to their safety. This is because these gas heaters do not have proper emission control characteristics as they were made to be placed in open areas.
They consume more oxygen and release harmful gases making it hard to breathe. At the same time, the carbon monoxide released by gas heaters ignites the process of combustion. So, the presence of this gas in your indoor setting will increase the chances of a sudden blast. Hence, this misappropriated use can become a source of significant destruction.
Obstruction in Ignition
Sometimes, your heater may take time to run. The delay or hindrance accumulates the gases in the chamber of the furnace. When you turn on the flame, in this case, the piled-up gases become a cause of the explosion. It can either happen due to a rusted furnace, erosion, or collection of dust. These factors spoil the activity of your warming unit and can make it catch fire.
However, you don’t need to run to the market every time you experience this delay as it is not so problematic one or two times. But if it’s a regular thing and you don’t pay attention to it at all, that would be hazardous. So, coming again to the most basic solution, get your air duct cleaned by a professional to be safe from explosions.
Most of the time, people ignore the smell of gas or fuel around them. Well, this is often a major mistake, especially when you have gas heaters around; every unusual smell matters. As such, if you are not aware of the severity of this situation, contact a professional right away instead of trying to explore things on your own.
This exploration can also immediately trigger the blast. Sometimes, you can also forget to close the gas emission points, which may ultimately end in an explosion.
Heat Getting Mixed with Explosive Fuels
Your heating system can also explode because of combustible fuels. Gas heaters produce these fuels to warm the surroundings. Their production is all good and unproblematic until it gets mixed with air or heat, as this mixing up can cause severe damage.
Make Heaters Safe For Yourself And Your Household
It is essential that you do all you can to make your heater safe, even if you think this is not completely necessary. Heaters are categorised into two kinds. One of them uses natural gas, and the others run on liquefied petroleum gas (LPG).
The former category is a significant source of pollution as the heaters consume oxygen in the environment, resulting in carbon monoxide, which can be harmful. Here are some tips to help you ensure safety with a gas heater.
Use Gas Detection Alarms
Carbon monoxide is a colourless and odourless gas that can cause nausea, headache, fatigue, and shortness of breath, etc. Despite this, exposure to the low levels of this poisonous gas for a long time can lead to impaired thinking and focus. You can figure out how the improper use of gas-based heating units causes damage based on these facts.
You can deal with this issue by installing carbon monoxide alarms in your homes so they can detect the levels of this poisonous compound. This provides protection and helps you relax. Some alarms can also detect fumes if the gas is leaked and ultimately generate a warning signal, keeping you safe from drastic circumstances.
Choose an Appropriate Location
Installing heaters at the right place matters to a great extent. You never know what thing present in the surrounding can cause or catch fire. So, take proper precautions and consult professionals before installing them in your home. Furthermore, if you are going to buy portable heaters, be careful where you place them.
Ventilate Your Home
Ventilating your home can also help reduce the levels of carbon monoxide or other gases present inside. Plus, remember not to leave your gas heater on overnight. People also often forget to turn off the heaters before leaving their houses, which is also dangerous.
Being a user of heating systems, it is important to be aware of the warning signals. Only then will you be able to ensure precautionary measures are taken to save yourself from any massive fire hazards. Plus, you must also know when it is the right time to pay attention to repairing your gas furnaces.
Ways To Prevent A Gas Heater Explosion
No one can control what’s coming. Because of this, it is important to be prepared for the worst-case scenarios. Taking preventive measures is the best way to avoid unwanted circumstances. Here are some solutions and ways to help you avoid these situations easily.
- Focus on regular maintenance of your appliances.
- Never use any outdoor heaters inside.
- Focus on the proper installation of your gas heater. Hire experienced and licensed professionals to do it.
- Remember to replace your damaged or old heaters because they can easily cause mishaps.
- Keep your gas heaters at appropriate places. i.e., away from all flammable objects.
- Check for any leakages regularly.
Is It better To Use Professionals?
Gas heaters are great machines to help you deal with cold and survive cold weather with ease. But at the same time, they might be hazardous if you do not take proper precautionary measures. Ultimately this can become a cause of an explosion and create unmanageable damage. However, the latest gas heater appliances on the market nowadays come with installed detectors.
So, if any fire risk is detected, they go off immediately, saving you from any hazards. The best thing is to avoid the worst cases, so don’t neglect reaching out to a professional for regular maintenance and inspection of your gas heater. But if an explosion does happen, make sure you have the proper tools to put the fire off immediately.