8 critical home repairs you can't ignore

Natural gas leak

You know you've got a problem when:  A rotten egg smell permeates your home. (Natural gas is odorless, but your utility company puts mercaptan in it so that you can tell if it's escaping.)

What causes it: Something as small as a pilot light that's out, or a gas burner on the stove that's not completely off, or something as big as a broken gas main leading to your house or running through your backyard.

The worst that can happen: An explosion and fire that destroys your home.

Fix it yourself? Not a chance. This is as dangerous as it gets. If a quick check of the stove doesn't reveal the source of the gas, get out of the house. You can open windows on your way but don't turn on anything electrical.

Who should you call? 911, which will dispatch gas company technicians to find the source of the leak.