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What Does a Gas Leak Smell Like?

If you have a gas furnace, you know these systems can provide fast, effective heating during the coldest months of the year. When your furnace’s flame sensor detects the presence of a flame, it opens the gas line and proceeds to ignite the gas. The furnace’s combustion chamber releases heat, which is then sent to the heat exchanger, where the air is heated up to your desired temperature.

There are many benefits to gas furnaces. However, there is one problem these heating systems can experience that others don’t — gas leaks. Carbon monoxide detectors can help indicate there is a gas leak inside your home, but what if you don’t have one of these devices installed? How can you know there’s a gas leak present?

Believe it or not, you can usually tell there’s a gas leak in your home due to the smell the gas produces. But what does a gas leak smell like? Fortunately, there is a distinct odor you can watch out for.

We’ll review how to identify a furnace gas leak smell in more detail below.

Can a Gas Leak Affect Your Health?

Before we discuss furnace gas leak smells, it’s important to understand how dangerous this issue can be. In some cases, natural gas leaks can be identified through hissing sounds, dead plants inside your home, and various health problems.

Use this guide to see how a gas leak can negatively impact your health:

What Does a Gas Leak Smell Like in a House?

A gas leak inside your home is cause for concern and should be handled like an emergency. Unfortunately, identifying a gas leak can be challenging for homeowners with furnaces that operate on natural gas, especially if they don’t know what to look out for.

So, what does a gas leak smell like? If you suspect you’re dealing with this problem, you’ll want to be mindful of rotten egg smells inside your home. This is because utility companies put an additive in natural gas called mercaptan that gives it that distinct, rotten egg odor. Mercaptan is a harmless chemical added to a natural gas supply so that homeowners can easily identify a leak.

What Should You Do if Your Furnace Is Leaking Gas?

Sure, it’s important to know what a gas leak does smell like, but what should you do to keep your family safe? First and foremost, if you suspect a gas leak inside your home, you should evacuate the premises immediately. Staying inside your home can put your health at risk.

Once you’ve safely exited your home, you’ll want to call your gas company or a local HVAC expert for assistance. An experienced furnace technician can provide you with the necessary repair or replacement to get the situation under control.

It’s important to mention that not every furnace gas leak smell is dangerous. For example, if you only notice the rotten egg smell briefly when your furnace starts a heating cycle, this typically isn’t cause for concern. Instead, this smell could be from the pilot light or electric ignition igniting the gas.

However, if you constantly smell gas near a furnace or the smell permeates throughout your home, don’t hesitate to treat the situation like an emergency. Call for help as soon as possible.

Keep Your Furnace Running Safely With Arlinghaus

So, what does a gas leak smell like? As you can see, gas leaks can be easily identified due to their distinct rotten egg odor. If you notice this strange furnace gas leak smell inside your home, contact Arlinghaus for an emergency service. We offer comprehensive furnace repairs to ensure your household remains comfortable and safe all season long.

Our residential HVAC contractors are committed to providing top-quality services in Erlanger, KY, and beyond. We specialize in everything from indoor air quality solutions to water heaters.

If you’re looking for a team that specializes in all things HVAC in Hamilton County or the surrounding area, contact us today to schedule an appointment!

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