Gas safety at home

It's easy to use gas safely at home if you take care

Natural gas has a distinct odour, and to help keep your family safe, it’s important to be familiar with the smell. Gas safety depends on many things, including the gas user taking care. Only ever use licenced plumbers / gas fitters to carry out work on your gas pipes and appliances - never undertake that work yourself. When this work is completed, you should ask for a certificate of compliance for the relevant gas works or installation.

NSW Fair Trading provides guidance on gas safety and efficiency. For further information contact:

  • Your gas retailer - please refer to your latest bill for contact details
  • The NSW Master Plumbers Association -1800 424 181, or
  • NSW Fair Trading - 13 32 20

Hints for maintaining and using gas appliances

Gas appliances need regular servicing

  • Burners in water heaters or space heaters can become blocked with dust or lint, and then block up the heat exchanger and flue passageways
  • Air filters, air ways and fans can become blocked by lint and dust, leading to overheating and burner problems
  • Safety controls can wear out and fail
  • Have your water heater, space heater or central heater serviced by a licensed gasfitter at least every two years. Always follow the manufacturer’s service plan and keep a record of the date of service.

Remove clothing and paper from around gas appliances

  • Items such as clothing and paper left close to or on gas appliances are fire risks.

Take care with flammable products around the home

  • Do not pour petrol near a gas appliance or flue outlet – petrol fumes could be ignited by the appliance flame
  • Do not fill your mower with petrol near a gas appliance or flue outlet
  • Do not spray aerosols near operating gas appliances – the flammable gas in aerosols pressure packs can be a fire hazard
  • Don't store chemicals or pressure packs on or near a gas appliance – heat may cause them to react or explode
  • Never use or store flammable materials such as petrol, mineral turpentine, paint or combustible cleaning solutions near a gas appliance
  • Turn off any pilot burners before using tile adhesive or solvents near a gas appliance

Don't get distracted in the kitchen

  • If you have something on the stove and get called away, turn off the burners or take a wooden spoon with you to remind you what you've left behind. Never leave frying chips unattended, as the oil may boil over and start a fire.

Operate gas appliances correctly

  • Use gas appliances only for their intended purpose and according to manufacturer’s instructions
  • Never tamper with safety valves or other fittings and do not use excessive force to open or close gas control knobs
  • Never use an oven to heat a room or as a clothes dryer
  • Turn your radiant gas heater off when you leave the house or go to sleep
  • Always supervise young children near heaters or any gas appliance
  • Clean your oven, grill, hot plate and range hood regularly to prevent the build up of spilled fats and burnt foods and reduce the risk of fire
  • Take care when using lawn mowers, brush cutters or digging in the garden so you do not damage gas pipes, or your gas meter assembly.