Gas Heater Health Check
Published in Plumbing Tips, 3rd Oct 2019
When should you get your gas heater checked?
Be sure to get all gas appliances in your home serviced regularly. Energysafe Victoria and the Victorian Building Authority advise doing this at least every two years. It’s a good idea to do it at the end of summer to beat the Autumn/Winter rush. If you have an older gas heater O’Shea Plumbing recommend that you consider having it serviced, and a carbon monoxide test carried out every year.
Use only an authorised gasfitter to carry out the work. It’s illegal (and dangerous) for anyone else to do it and you could also invalidate your home insurance.
The servicing of a gas heater includes –
- Checking that the heater is installed correctly and carrying out safety checks
- A general clean of the heater including the burners, fans and filters
- Checking the flue
- Burner pressure checks
- Checking the heat exchange
- Checking for correct operation of the heater
- Carbon monoxide tests.
Benefits of servicing your gas heater regularly
- Lowers your gas bill. Makes your gas heater operate at its premium efficiency
- Helps extend the life of your heater
- Helps prevent carbon monoxide poisoning.
Use your gas heater safely
- Check if your heater is affected by a safety alert
- If your heater is open flue, you should let some fresh air into the house when the heater is on
- Don’t use exhaust fans at the same time as your heater – this can draw CO into the room
- Never leave your heater on overnight
- Install a carbon monoxide alarm as a back-up measure
- If your heater is old, or hasn’t been serviced for several years, consider replacing it
- Never use outdoor gas appliances designed for outdoor use inside your home, caravan, car or tent
- Know the symptoms of CO poisoning and act quickly if you notice them.
Carbon monoxide – what are the risks?
Carbon monoxide (CO) is a gas you can’t see or smell. When it spills from your gas heater, it can make you very sick or even kill you and your family.
Any gas heater can spill CO – including old and new heaters, central heating units, space heaters, wall furnaces and decorative log fires.
To avoid the risk, ESV and the VBA recommend that all gas heaters are serviced at least every two years by a qualified gasfitter. A qualified gasfitter will inspect your heater and check its installation, including testing for CO leakage.