Split nut!

In this month’s blog, I thought I would share an interesting story with you from a recent call out I received.  I received a call from a home-owner who was concerned they had a gas leak after smelling gas out by their spa, but couldn’t see anything suspicious along the line.  The gas line ran along a wall by the spa and on initial visual inspection the line and the fittings and fixtures all appeared fine.  In my experience, it is more common for a gas leak to be in the fittings, where they may be loose and gas escaping.  Given this, I conducted a soapy water test on all the fittings and isolated the leak to one of the fittings.  The soapy water will bubble on a fitting that is leaking gas.

My first response on locating the leak was to attempt to tighten the fittings, however it was already extremely tight which was odd given it was leaking gas.  However, then I noticed it…. the actual nut was completely split through the underside causing it to leak and given it was hidden from my line of sight, not easily detectable.

As you can see in the picture, this was not a little split and gas had been leaking for some time.  In my experience, it not overly common for fittings or nuts to completely split as this one had done, but was a timely reminder not to ever ignore or just trust a “visual inspection” when determining whether you have a gas leak.

Energy Safe Victoria provide home-owners with a range of tips and recommendations for gas safety around the house, including inside (i.e. heaters, gas appliances) and outside (i.e. BBQ’s).  I encourage my customers to review the information provided on Energy Safe Victoria’s website and always call a plumber licensed in gas-fitting if you need any help with gas maintenance around your home.