Installation of gas detection instruments
The first step in properly placing gas detection instrumentation is to identify the areas with the most natural gas. Because natural gas has no color or smell, uncontrolled concentrations in the air can quickly become very dangerous. For many facilities, enclosed or poorly ventilated areas near industrial equipment should be the primary concern when installing a gas detection system. If gas can leak from anywhere in the room, it is necessary to monitor the entire room with multiple gas detection instruments.
When monitoring combustible gases, it is important to know the density of the gas of interest. Propane and gasoline gases are more dense and heavier than air, which means that gas detection is most beneficial near the floor. Low-density gases such as natural gas are lighter than air and have been known to collect near the ceiling of buildings. With this in mind, it's best to mount fixed gas detectors within a few inches of the ceiling.
Consider the ventilation area
Does your building have open windows or exhaust pipes? While good ventilation is necessary to reduce gas concentrations in buildings, drafts can affect the performance of gas detection instruments. When installing a gas detector, be sure to place it away from fresh air ducts or door and window openings.
Determine your monitoring limits
Fixed gas detectors are designed with a sensor that continuously measures the gas concentration. Just like your nose, these sensors can only detect what's within their range. If you can determine where the leak is most likely to occur, you should place gas detectors strategically to cover the entire area. When detecting gases, there are several things to keep in mind such as gas density, expected leak source (i.e. seals, valves, etc.), gas flow, and expected ignition source.
Protect against natural gas leaks
Installing the correct gas leak detection instrumentation starts with understanding your working conditions and the characteristics of the hazardous gases nearby. By identifying the leak source and physical characteristics of your building, you can invest in a gas detection system that meets your needs.