To burn, natural gas must mix with the proper amount of air and be ignited by a flame or a spark. A properly burning natural gas flame will be a crisp blue color. If natural gas is burned without enough air, it may produce carbon monoxide which is a poisonous gas.
Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless gas that can build up when coal, wood, propane, kerosene or natural gas is not properly or completely burned. This can happen when a heater, stove or furnace is malfunctioning or when a charcoal grill is used indoors without proper ventilation. It can even happen when a chimney has not been cleaned or is blocked by something.
Carbon monoxide exposure symptoms
A person exposed to carbon monoxide may complain of dizziness, a headache, nausea, fatigue or other flu-like symptoms.
Ensure proper maintenance
Make sure all natural gas appliances are properly adjusted and that chimney flues, vent pipes and heat exchangers are not cracked, bent or closed.
Protect yourself from carbon monoxide poisoning by having your chimney inspected and cleaned annually, properly maintaining your natural gas appliances and installing a carbon monoxide detector.