Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) offers free in-home safety checks to help customers prepare their gas appliances for the upcoming cold weather months. These checks include relighting pilot lights for customers who turned off their heaters or other appliances during warmer months. The goal is to ensure safe and efficient operation of gas appliances, reducing the risk of carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning. CO is a silent, odorless, and invisible danger.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, over 400 Americans die from unintentional CO poisoning annually, with more than 100,000 emergency room visits and over 14,000 hospitalizations. PG&E has responded to over 6,100 suspected carbon monoxide incidents in 2023.
PG&E’s Senior Vice President of Gas Operations, Joe Forline, emphasizes that one of the best ways to prevent dangerous CO levels is to ensure appliances are safe. The free safety check identifies any issues that might affect safe operation and includes pilot light inspection and relighting.
Schedule your free inspection
To schedule an inspection before the winter months, visit www.pge.com/pilotlights for a free and convenient appointment, reducing wait times on the customer service line. You can also call 800-743-5000 to schedule.
Winter Gas Safety Tips
- Install carbon monoxide detectors to warn when concentration levels are high.
- All California single-family homes are required to have carbon monoxide detectors.
- Carbon monoxide detectors should be installed on every floor, near sleeping areas and common areas.
- These devices should be tested twice a year, and batteries replaced if necessary.
- Check the expiration date – most carbon monoxide detectors have a shelf life of five to seven years.
- Never use products inside the home that generate dangerous levels of carbon monoxide, such as generators, outdoor grills, or propane heaters.
- Never use cooking devices such as ovens or stoves for home heating purposes.
- When using the fireplace to stay warm, make sure the flue is open so venting can occur safely through the chimney.
- Make sure water heaters and other natural gas appliances have proper ventilation.