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How can I check that my gas system is safe?

Tragic accidents regularly remind us of the importance of respecting basic safety rules when heating or cooking with gas.

Using certified professionals  to install, maintain or inspect your installation is essential. But this is not enough. Some basic safety rules must also be respected.

1. Get to know your installation

Make an effort to locate the different parts of your installation. In particular, locate precisely where you can shut off the gas in the event of an incident.

Do you live in an apartment block? Mark your meter (with a label for example). This will also prevent you from accidentally cutting off your neighbour's gas when you go on holiday!

2. Keep access to your installation clear

Make sure you can access your meter and boiler effortlessly at any time.

3. Shut off the gas if you are away for a long time

If you are away for a long time and you are not intending the boiler to switch on, turn off the gas supply. On your return, check that all gas equipment is properly switched off before reopening the valve at the meter.

4. Keep an eye on the gas pipes

Check the condition of the fixed and flexible pipes, paying particular attention to the fittings, or get someone to inspect them.

5. Keep your gas installation properly maintained

As a reminder, in Brussels and two other regions of the country, periodic boiler maintenance is mandatory! Be sure you stick to the rules because, besides the risks, you are liable for a fine if you don't.

6. Check the condition of your gas cooker

Inspect your cooker regularly, paying particular attention to the nozzles, whose openings must not be clogged.  Flexible connecting tubes must not show any signs of wear or cracking.

If your gas cooker is an old model not equipped with a safety system which cuts off the gas supply when the flame goes out, seriously consider replacing it as soon as possible.

7. Check the condition of the gas flue

Check regularly that the gas flue is not blocked with foreign bodies. Have it serviced regularly.

8. Ventilate your home

Proper ventilation increases the efficiency of the heating and makes it possible to avoid the formation of carbon monoxide (CO) . The room that houses your boiler, in particular, must be permanently ventilated.

9. Install CO detectors

Carbon monoxide is invisible and odourless and causes too many deaths every year. Invest in a few CO detectors to install in the rooms where your boiler or water heater is located.

10. Do you smell gas?

Despite all your best efforts, you are never immune to a bad connection or another issue that can lead to gas leakage.

If so, do not hesitate to get out of the building immediately and call Sibelga at 0800 19 400 or the fire brigade.  Also read the procedures to be followed if you smell gas.

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