You may have noticed that your propane company mails you information from time to time to keep you informed about propane safety. You may recall finding a “Scratch and Sniff” test—allowing you to easily recognize the distinct smell of propane.
In its natural form, propane is odorless, but manufacturers deliberately add a chemical compound to give it a strong unpleasant smell. This odorized propane is usually described as something similar to the odor of rotten eggs or a skunk’s spray.
However, there are situations that may prevent you from detecting that telltale odor. Sometimes, conditions in your home – or in your body – can make it harder to pick up propane’s scent.
Commonly known as “odor loss,” this can be caused by:
With this in mind, it is important to take these two precautions for propane leaks:
Without question, propane is one of the safest fuels you can choose for your Tennessee home. But to stay as safe as possible, you should always pay close attention to the operation of your gas appliances. The best way to keep all your propane equipment running properly is to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for preventive maintenance. Be sure to consult your owner’s manuals for what’s required.
When appliances operate properly, propane burns with a blue flame. If you see yellow flames—or notice significant amounts of soot on any equipment–the gas may not be burning completely. This can create carbon monoxide. Contact your propane company or HVAC contractor for service if you notice a yellow flame or soot on your appliances.
You should also regularly check the outdoor vents of your appliances to make sure combustion gases flow unobstructed to the outdoors. Insects, birds and small animals have been known to build nests in vent pipes. To prevent any damage, use a broom or a soft brush to gently remove any obstructions you find in your vents.
You can read more safety tips here.
If you have questions or concerns about propane safety, be sure to consult with your local Tennessee propane company.