Appliance Safety

Safety is our #1 priority at Hawkins County Gas.  We strive to make our customers feel comfortable and safe at all times.  In the event of an emergency, call our 24-hour emergency line at (423) 272-8841 or (423) 357-8585.  If your call is not answered please dial 911 and report your emergency.

NATURAL GAS AND PROPANE APPLIANCES SHOULD ALWAYS BE:

  • Installed by properly trained and qualified personnel.

  • Installed in accordance with installation instructions and applicable building codes.

  • Converted from natural gas or propane use only by qualified personnel according to instructions.

  • Operated and maintained according to manufacturer's instructions.

  • Inspected regularly to ensure proper operation.  We recommend annual inspections and cleanings of heating systems, vents, flues and chimney by a professional service provider.

Appliance safety points to consider between inspections include the following:

  • Be aware of your water heater's temperature setting.  Settings over 125° F can cause severe burns.

  • Ensure proper air flow or clearances are maintained for your gas appliances in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions.

  • Change air filters regularly in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions.

  • Keep paper, fabric and flammable fluids away from pilot lights, open flames and any surfaces that may become hot when the appliance is in use.

  • Educate family members about all surfaces that may get hot when the appliances is in use, including vent pipes.

  • Never allow children to play with or adjust appliance controls.

  • All service or repairs for your gas appliances should be made by a properly trained and qualified personnel.

When selecting a natural gas or propane appliance, please remember that there are special considerations for installations in bathrooms, bedrooms, garages, and more.  Please contact us if you have any questions or concerns.  Our trained professionals are always happy to make recommendations that could help prevent any potential problems.

Bathrooms

The installation of natural gas or propane appliances inside bathrooms comes with many code restrictions to ensure safety.  For example, an unvented heater installed in a bathroom must be wall-mounted and cannot exceed 6,000 BTUH.  There are other restrictions like this, so please contact us with your questions or concerns.

Bedrooms

The installation of natural gas or propane appliances inside bedrooms comes with many code restrictions to ensure safety.  For example, an unvented heater installed in a bedroom must be wall-mounted and cannot exceed 10,000 BTUH.  There are other restrictions like this, so please contact us with your questions or concerns.

Clearances

Natural gas and propane appliances need proper air flow to operate correctly.  Each appliance is labeled with the necessary clearances to insure proper air flow.  Clearances around each appliance, vent, exhaust, combustion and/or make-up air system MUST BE maintained for safety reasons.

Filters

Filters are an integral part of the operation of some natural gas and propane appliances, such as furnaces and dryers.  Filters should be cleaned regularly and replaced as necessary in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions to insure proper operation of the appliances.  Clean filters not only help keep you safe... they actually save you money too!

Flammables

It's important not to overlook the importance of safely handling and storing flammable products.  DO NOT use or store flammable products (gasoline, solvents, paints, or adhesives) in the same room or area near a gas appliance or other potential source of flammable vapor ignition.

Garages

Installing natural gas or propane appliances in garages comes with various code restrictions that must be followed to ensure safety.  For example, unless an appliance is listed as flammable vapor ignition resistant, it must be installed so that the source of ignition is at least eighteen inches (18") above the level of the garage floor.  This reduces the risk of gasoline or other flammable vapors from being ignited by the main burner or pilot flame.

Unvented Heaters

Unvented natural gas room heaters are a wonderful source of efficient, supplemental heat, but they CANNOT be used as the sole source of comfort heating in a dwelling.  Need more advice on how to safely choose and operate an unvented heater?  Feel free to contact us.  As always, we are here to help you.

Vents & Ducts

Vents and ducts are integral to the safe operation of some natural gas or propane appliances.  If the use of vents or ducts is necessary for the installation of an appliance, they MUST remain clear, complete and unobstructed.  NEVER block, shorten, or remove any vent pipe or duct work associated with a natural gas or propane installation.

Water Heater Reliefs

Each water heater is equipped with a temperature and pressure relief valve, sometimes referred to as a "T & P Valve" or a "pop-off".  These valves are designed to relive any over-pressure in the tank in the event of a malfunction.  It the "T & P Valve" is leaking, it should be inspected by a trained professional because it may be an indicator of a larger problem.  Water heater "T & P Valves" SHOULD NEVER BE REMOVED AND PLUGGED as this can lead to dangerous over-pressure of the water heater. 

Water Temperature

Children, disabled people, and the elderly are at high risk of being scalded by water from an improperly adjusted water heater.  Water temperatures over 125° F can cause severe burns instantly from scalds.  Always feel water before bathing or showering.  Please check the manufacturer's instruction manual carefully before setting the temperature of any water heater.