What Should you do if you Smell Natural Gas Inside or Outside your Home?

The first thing you should do if you smell Natural Gas is to call 911 or the emergency number of your natural gas distribution company, at a safe distance away from the leak (see below for a list of companies).

How to detect a natural gas leak:

  • Smell: natural gas distribution companies add mercaptan to the gas to give it a distinctive, pungent, onion or rotten egg smell (gross right?) to help detect the smallest of leaks
  • Hissing sound
  • If the pilot light is out
  • Dead or dying vegetation in the surrounding area around your gas meter
  • Unusual soil movement or abnormally dry or hard soil.
  • Bubbling water in wet or flooded areas
  • Damaged pipes, valves or connections to gas appliances
  • Damaged appliances such as your furnace or water heater


If you think you have a natural gas leak inside your home:

  • Go outside immediately
  • Open the doors and windows to let in fresh air
  • Do not touch any lights and appliances

If you think you have a natural gas leak outside your home:

  • Turn off BBQ’s or put out campfires immediately
  • Keep the doors and windows to your home closed to prevent the gas from going into your home
  • Do not smoke, or use lighters or matches

**Do not use phones, camera or any other electronics in the vicinity of the leak.

Natural Gas Distribution Companies 24 hour FREE Emergency Service Numbers:

ATCO Gas & Pipelines Ltd. 1-800-511-3447

AltaGas Utilities Inc. 1-866-222-2068



Alana Kitchen
Alana Kitchen
Alana Kitchen, founder of Who To Call Inc. Taking care of a house with three boys I always needed a good drywaller on speed dial. When I moved to Calgary I quickly discovered it was an Olympic sport to find home service businesses that provided the quality service and advice I was looking for. This experience inspired Who To Call – a website dedicated to helping Calgarians find quality home service repair companies. Sign up to post your project and find quality companies today!
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