Today, in Nigeria, we see various homes using gas cylinders to store their cooking gas – Liquid Petroleum Gas, LPG.
It’s a preferred option to the alternative fuels for cooking like kerosene, coal and firewood. Apart from been cheap, it’s a lot easier to use and lasts longer. No wonder it’s on a higher demand in Nigerian homes.
Sadly, a lot of Nigerians do not know that gas cylinders expire…
Research has shown that 90% of cooking gas are in expired gas cylinders. Most homes even have gas cylinders over 30 years old and counting…amazed?
When a gas cylinder expires, it can cause leakages of the gas in it and as a result of that, an explosion occurs leading to loss of lives and properties.
For example, if a 12kg gas cylinder explodes, it’s capable of bringing down a two-storey building as stated by the Standard Organization of Nigeria, SON.
It’s recommended that cooking gas cylinders should not exceed five years. Once the gas cylinder is past the expiry date, you should stop using it.
But then, most people using gas cylinders hardly remember when it was purchased – sad but true!
How then do you check for the expiry date of your gas cylinders?
For cylinders storing cooking gases, the expiry dates are in form of codes mentioned on one of the metal strips that connect the body of the cylinder to the hand. The following steps would help you to decode them easily:
- Check the inner side of the strip. The strip has any of the alphabets from A to D painted with it along with a number. These alphabets represent the month it expires and each alphabet is divided into four quarters.
- A – January to March, B – April to June, C – July to September, D – October to December.
- Besides each alphabet is a number. This number represents the year the cylinder is due to expire.
So for example, let’s say you checked a cylinder and you see the inscription “A21”, this simply means that the cylinder will expire on March 2021. In other words, it means that starting from January of the year 2021, you should have started making preparations for the purchase of a new cylinder!
Don’t have plans for a new cylinder in your budget? Not to worry! There is a grace period of three to four months after the expiry and this should help you in making quick decisions to purchase one.
It’s important to note that a lot of distributors tamper with the expiry date as it is written with paint and can be easily scratched off, so next time you’re getting a gas cylinder, ensure to check the expiry date and stay safe!
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Stay safe always!