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Background

I want to move my electric dryer. This involves moving the exhaust vent. This question is about where I can safely terminate the vent duct on the exterior of my home.

I already understand the requirements to use 4" rigid metal ducts, and the maximum lengths of ducts, and that bends in ducts deduct from the length calculation.

Again, my question is about exterior termination of the vent.

Research

The only building codes I could find regarding dryer vent termination were the International Residential Code, which says:

  • Exhaust ducts shall terminate on the outside of the building.
  • Exhaust duct terminations shall be in accordance with the dryer manufacturer’s installation instructions.
    • If the manufacturer’s instructions do not specify a termination location, the exhaust duct shall terminate not less than 3 feet (914 mm) in any direction from openings into buildings.
  • Exhaust duct terminations shall be equipped with a backdraft damper.
  • Screens shall not be installed at the duct termination.

Question

The easiest location to place the vent is right next to my home's gas meter. My questions are:

  1. Is it safe to have my dryer vent exhausting next to (22" away from) the gas meter.
    1. Would a gas leak at the meter be exacerbated by hot-moist-linty air?
  2. Is it legal to have my dryer vent exhausting next to the gas meter.
  3. What constitutes a building opening? There is a non-opening window nearby, does that count as an opening? Edit: It's not a window per se, it's made from glass bricks.

Glass brick

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    M1506.2 Exhaust openings....3 feet (914 mm) from operable and nonoperable openings.... So you have to be 3 ft. Away from even a non-opening window. – Tester101 Jun 28 '15 at 15:06
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    As for venting near a gas meter. I'd think that as long as the exhaust isn't blowing on the meter, there shouldn't be a problem. Obviously you're not going to want to exhaust behind the meter, but it's probably not a problem being near the meter. If it were me, I'd contact the gas company and ask them. – Tester101 Jun 28 '15 at 15:13
  • thanks, that's a good idea about contacting the gas company ... although I don't know who I should talk to there – Walter Stabosz Jun 29 '15 at 2:27
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  1. An opening under the building code would typically be a door or a window.

  2. If you have a gas leak, the dryer vent nearby doesn't significantly increase the hazard of the gas leak, because the hazard of a gas leak is massive.

On the other hand, blowing hot moist air on a piece of equipment is more likely to create maintenance issues and routing a new installation is typically pretty easy, it's probably worth a little extra trouble to avoid venting directly onto the meter.

  • I edited the question a bit to add more details ... 1. the window is built from glass bricks, so I'm not sure if it qualifies as a window. 2. the vent would be 22" away from the meter, not right next to it. Also, there really isn't anywhere else I can put the vent exit, the other wall exits underneath a deck. – Walter Stabosz Jun 29 '15 at 2:25
  • Glass masonry would typically not be considered an opening under the model building codes and hence can be used in the construction of fire rated partitions. See: pittsburghcorning.com/specifications-and-details/cad/… – ben rudgers Jun 29 '15 at 15:01

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