Natural Gas Alarms Frequently Asked Questions
Common Questions About Our Alarms And Gas Safety
Q. How many natural gas alarms should I have in my home?
There should be a gas alarm installed in every room that has a gas appliance (i.e. gas water heater, gas dryer, gas oven, etc.) Early detection of natural gas leaks is important to saving lives and preventing property damage.
Q. Where should I install my natural gas alarm?
A natural gas alarm should be installed indoors in any room that has a gas-fueled appliance. This can include a stove, furnace, water heater, gas fireplace, or a gas dryer. It should be installed on the wall, within 12 inches from the ceiling. Although it is important to install natural gas alarms in rooms where gas appliances exist, it is recommended that a natural gas alarm be placed as far away from these appliances as possible, preferably more than 10 feet (3 meters) away. This should help reduce "unwanted" nuisance alarms, which can occur if a natural gas alarm is placed directly next to a gas source.
Q. Where should I avoid installing my natural gas alarm?
A natural gas alarm should not be installed in the peak of a cathedral ceiling. Natural gas detectors should not be installed directly above or near sources of water or humidity such as a sink, cooktop, dishwasher or shower. Natural gas alarms should not be installed in a damp or very humid location, such as a bathroom. They should not be installed next to a door or window, a ventilation fan, a room return, or an HVAC duct. They should not be installed in an area where the temperature will drop below 32°F (0°C) or exceed 122°F (50°C). The natural gas alarm should not be installed in an area that is dusty or dirty, or where organic solvents and silicone vapors exist. The natural gas detector should not be installed outside.
Q. What is the benefit of installing natural gas alarms near the ceiling?
Natural gas is lighter than air and accumulates at the ceiling level. Detection can occur earlier when alarms are installed higher in the room, giving residents more time to react appropriately.
Q. What does lower explosive limit (LEL) mean?
TThe lower explosive limit (or LEL) refers to the lowest concentration (by percentage) of a gas that is capable of producing a flash of fire in the presence of an ignition source. For methane, the LEL is 5% volume in air, which corresponds to 100% LEL. The natural gas alarm is designed to sound off when detecting methane concentrations as low as 10% LEL, or 0.5% volume in air.
Q. What is the battery life of the DeNova Detect wireless natural gas alarm?
Current wireless products have a 6-year battery life, however, a 10-year battery product is in development.
Q. Why are natural gas alarms needed when residents can just smell the gas leaks?
While a distinctive odor is added to odorless natural gas, there are a number of factors that may affect residents' ability to smell gas leaks. These may include diminished sense of smell, olfactory fatigue or the odor being masked or hidden by other odors that are present, such as cooking, damp, musty or chemical odors. In addition, certain pipeline and soil conditions can cause odor fade-the loss of odorant so that it is not detectable by smell. Evidence also shows that consumers are reluctant to report until the odor is very strong and potentially dangerous. The only way to be sure of a gas leak is to utilize a quality natural gas alarm, installed correctly near the ceiling.
Q. Will my natural gas alarm detect carbon monoxide?
No, the natural gas alarm will not detect carbon monoxide. The natural gas alarm is designed to detect methane, which is the main gas component of natural gas. Please install a separate carbon monoxide alarm to protect against any carbon monoxide dangers.
Q. Is pressing the test button the only way to test my natural gas alarm?
Pressing the test button allows you to check if the device is powered on, as well as check the performance of the speaker. While this may be the only way for you to manually test the natural gas alarm, internally the natural gas alarm is performing self-tests that check a variety of sub-circuits in the natural gas alarm, including the temperature and humidity sensor, and the methane sensor itself. If something is found wrong with one of these sub-circuits, the Trouble (Yellow) LED will begin to blink 3 times every 10 seconds, and the audible alert will beep 3 times and say “Detector error” once every minute.
This natural gas alarm should NOT be used as a short-term testing natural gas alarm. In other words, you should not test it by intentionally leaking gas, either via a stove, a pilot light, or any other gas source. Not only is this not the intended operation of the natural gas alarm, but this can cause a very dangerous situation that could have otherwise been easily avoided.
Q. What are some common sources of natural gas leaks?
Some common sources of natural gas leaks include gas stoves, furnaces, laundry dryers, water heaters, and other gas appliances commonly found in the home. Another source of a gas leak could be outside gas leaks that migrate indoors through your basement.
Q. Is natural gas heavier than air?
Natural gas is lighter than air. This means that if there is a natural gas leak, the gas will rise towards the ceiling. This is why the natural gas alarm should be installed within 4 to 12 inches of the ceiling.
Q. Are the DeNova Detect natural gas alarms listed?
Yes. The ML-310 is listed by UL1484 certification and the 807NIT is certified by the FCC.
Q. What communications platforms are DeNova Detect natural gas alarms compatible with?
Our products are compatible with Itron's Gen5 customers. Future products will also align with expanded wireless communication networks that include Senet using LoRaWAN.
Q. How often should I replace the battery in my natural gas alarm?
The natural gas alarm is designed so that the battery will last the entire lifecycle of the product. Therefore, if your device begins to issue a Low Battery Alert, you should purchase a new natural gas alarm rather than attempt to replace the battery. The battery used in the natural gas alarm is not available for purchase at retail.
Q. When is it time to replace my natural gas alarm?
The natural gas alarm should be replaced when the End-of-Service-Life (or EOL) Alert activates on your device. When this happens, the Trouble (Yellow) LED on the device will begin to blink twice every 10 seconds, and the audible alert will beep twice and say "Please replace detector" once every minute. This will occur approximately 6 years (model: ML-310) or 7 years (model: 807N) after device installation.
Q. Why does my natural gas alarm chirp approximately once every minute?
If the natural gas alarm is beeping approximately once every minute, this means that the battery is low. You will also see the Trouble (Yellow) LED on the device is blinking once every 10 seconds, and the audible alert will beep once and say “Low battery” every minute.
Q. What does the "Power LED" do?
The Power LED (green) tells you if the natural gas alarm is on. To check if the natural gas alarm is on, hold the Test button for less than 3 seconds, then release. You will hear the natural gas alarm beep once, and the Power LED will blink for 3 seconds.
Q. What does the "Trouble LED" do?
The Trouble LED (yellow) tells you a few different things with the natural gas alarm. If the Trouble LED is blinking once every 10 seconds, this means the battery is low. If the Trouble LED is blinking twice every 10 seconds, this means the device has reached its end-of-service-life. If the Trouble LED is blinking 3 times every 10 seconds, this means there is a detector error.
Q. What does the "Alarm LED" do?
The Alarm LED (red) tells you if methane gas has been detected at a concentration above the alarm threshold. In the event of a natural gas alarm, the Alarm LED will blink once every 2 seconds until the gas leak conditions have been resolved.