All gas appliances and flues need to be checked regularly. Faulty gasworks can cause gas leaks, explosions, fires and carbon monoxide poisoning. Landlords are legally required to have a Gas Safe registered engineer complete annual safety checks. You can find a registered engineer in your local area through the Gas Safe Register. We suggest you crosscheck them against the Buy With Confidence scheme, which provides a register of businesses that have been vetted and approved by Trading Standards. If you rent, you should ask your landlord to see the Gas Safety Certificate.
Properties that use gas for heating, hot water and/or cooking or those that burn solid fuel, including wood-burning fireplaces, should also be fitted with carbon monoxide (CO) detectors. You can purchase these from most hardware shops. For more safety advice, you can get in touch with the Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service.
If you smell gas (typically a rotten egg smell) or your CO alarm sounds, stop using all appliances, switch them off and open the windows and doors to get fresh air into your home. Turn off your gas supply at the gas meter if it’s safe to do so. Leave the building immediately and call the National Gas Emergency Number on 0800 111 999 to report the problem. Don’t return until the source of the gas leak or CO has been identified and the air inside is clear.
If you feel unwell, visit your doctor or call 999 in an emergency and tell them you may have carbon monoxide poisoning. Some of the symptoms include:
Don’t forget about your electrical system and electrical appliances. Misusing products, for example by overloading sockets, or using damaged items increases your chances of a house fire or suffering an electric shock. Have them checked to ensure they are safe to use. Tradesmen registered with Buy With Confidence are a good place to start looking. You may also want to register your appliance with The Association of Manufacturers of Domestic Appliances to receive notifications of any safety repairs or recalls.