When the gas locker on Maximus turns out to be dangerous, surveyor Ben Sutcliffe-Davies pulls out a gas detector before continuing the survey

Detecting gas leaks on boats is important, especially as gas standards on boats were very different 40 years ago. Sadly the PBO Project Boat Maximus is going to require a whole new installation if we decide to keep gas onboard.

After discovering a faulty DIY gas locker and out-of-date hoses on the Maxi 84, marine surveyor Ben Sutcliffe-Davies insisted on getting his gas wand out before continuing with the survey below decks.

In this video Ben demonstrates how the battery-powered, one-handed £49.99 gas detector from Screwfix works. He positions it around the bilge and engineroom, using the flexible neck for hard-to-reach areas.

The TPI 725L combustible gas detector is a handy tool, available from Screwfix

“If any gas was flying around it would end up in this part of the boat,” explains Ben. “The bleeping hasn’t speeded up, I’m happy there’s no gas in the boat so we’ll carry on doing our survey now… I think it’s a great little piece of kit.” 

Ben mainly uses the gas detector on narrowboats, which he says are notorious for leaky gas lockers, but suggests it’s worth buying one for any boat with gas onboard.

He also recommends a company called Nereus, which sell gas alarms specifically for yachts that have a waterproof sensor for the bilge.

As well as having a dangerous gas locker, Maximus also has a gas oven that will need to be replaced. On the above video you can see the damaged hose, and hear Ben explain that it doesn’t have a thermal cut-out, meaning if the flame goes out gas could still leak into the boat.

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