PG&E is disingenuous about:
1. Their manual shut-off valve at the meter. They tell us: “if you smell gas after a quake, go out and turn the gas off at the meter.”
Problem: at the end of my in-home consults, I check this valve with the special tool or a regular crescent wrench. Over 70% of the time, I can’t budge the valve. Without a special plumber’s pipe wrench, most homeowners would be out of luck. PG&E knows this is a problem, but does nothing about it, unless you call.
Advice: check your manual valve. Call PG&E if it’s too difficult or impossible for you to make it slightly move, and tell them they need to come out and replace or repair the valve. It’s their responsibility. Get your neighbors, family, and friends to do the same. In the image above, the yellow arrow is pointing to the manual shut-off valve.
2. Fire hazard if you’re not home when a major quake hits. They just blithely presume we’ll be home to turn our gas off if there’s a gas leak after a quake. What if we’re not home?
Problem: PG&E doesn’t recommend installing automatic gas shut-off valves to solve the problem of not being at home. Their official position on installing these valves? “Neutral.” No position. Really? Even after their horrible track record of promoting safety?
Advice: Make sure you and your neighbors have automatic gas shut-off valves installed.
Our prices for automatic gas shut-off valves: $245 – $285, depending upon location.