53

The other answers here are good from a technical point of view about how to verify a leak, but to answer the question of "how to convince a plumber", I'll second a comment by @manassehkatz: call the gas company. Any time I've suspected a leak the gas/energy provider has been very quick to send someone out with their own tester (not just a soapy ...


26

Your gas dryer vents its combustion products outside along with the moisture from your clothes, so it is vented to the outside. Your oven doesn't vent out mostly for sake of having limited combustion. There are ventless heaters available. However you run it, though, any natural gas burning device will create water vapor and carbon dioxide. If it ...


26

If the water on the floor is from the water heater I would fix that problem before I do anything else. If it is coming from the tank then it probably needs replaced. You can raise the tank as high as you want but if you do I would also replace the copper flex water lines and the flexible gas line. Once those lines get older, the flex gets hard and rigid and ...


18

I speak as a former engineer for a utility that provides both gas and electricity. Gas lines are typically metal or plastic. If plastic, they're very likely thick enough to withstand most hand digging with a shovel. Laws typically require hand digging within some distance (18" in my state) of a marked line. If you do find a gas line with your shovel and ...


17

You have to use a lot of liquid detector and large leaks can blow right through without making bubbles; however, typically a leak this large would be easily detected by the Mark-I human sensors you were born with. The general rule is- big leak=big bubbles, small leak=small bubbles, tiny leak=tiny bubbles. Remember that the odorant (mercaptan) will remain in ...


16

You are looking at a union, with an elbow to the left and a valve to the right. Put one wrench on the biggest "nut". Put the other wrench on the smaller "nut" immediately to the right of it - you'll notice both of them are more worn than the other ones. Hold the smaller one still while unscrewing the larger one. Here's a cutaway view, if this image link ...


16

Try to fan the area with fresh air to the point the detector detects nothing then immediately use the detector to zero in on the area where the gas begins to appear. Try using saran wrap to isolate the detector around each joint. Try a bottle of leak detector fluid. Sure it's overpriced soap but in this case the $5 may be worth while. Try being generous ...


14

...natural gas...   ...I'm not sure what the different parts are here... Those two statements together equal "call a gasfitter". Removing the appliance will leave the gas line unsupported, and that will lead to failure at the supported end off to the right. The cap you want to install must be properly sealed or it will leak. Maybe now, maybe later. If ...


13

No gas shut off for either line, flex is not suitable for a stationary appliance unless it's approved CSST, duct tape on the flue, draft hood is crooked, pressure relief should terminate in a conspicuous location, those flex lines, globe valve, saddle valve, crooked seismic strap, it's old, it's leaking, plus all the problems not visible from the picture. ...


12

If you have threaded iron gas pipe coming into the house, expect a MUCH MUCH larger job that it looks like if you do that - you have to start at the loose end of that pipe and back every joint out, one at a time, until you get to the siding. The typical way of handling that situation with solid siding (clapboards, shakes, etc) is to cut a notch in the ...


11

There is a reason most countries regulate gas-related equipment strictly, because they don't want buildings to explode. If there is no electricity or gas involved, fix it! If it's under - let's say - 50 Volts, go on! If it's 110-230 V, watch out, but you'll be probably okay. If it can leak gas, and fill up the inside of a building, or kill everyone through ...


10

This appears to be a simple misunderstanding of how a gas dryer works. The gas dryer creates heat by burning air and the gas together, then blowing the heated air and combustion mixture through the clothes and then out the dryer vent. In other words, the combustion gases are vented to the outside, per code, along with the moisture from the clothing. Since ...


9

Yes, it is a typical for the gas stovetops to light all of the burners even when only one is needed. Note that this applies to stovetops that do not have a standing pilot light. The oven often will have its own ignitor that operates independently of the stovetop. The reason for this may be in order to reduce the complexity of the stovetop design. With all ...


9

The thermopile in your fireplace puts out millivolts, nothing near the 120V the light switch was designed for. It's probably just a matter of finding a switch with a low enough on resistance. A generic low voltage switch from a electronics store, or ripped out of a toy, would probably do it (for example a 12V SPST). Really here the smaller the better, but ...


9

There are two types of tubing most people think of, when you say "flexible gas tubing". The first and more common, are flexible gas connectors. These guys are typically 3-6' long, and are used to connect appliances to the gas piping. They are only to be used as a short link between the fixed piping and the appliance, and so are considered a "...


9

The possibility of the natural gas line transmitting the fire is extremely close to zero. Yes natural gas requires air, about 20% mixture of gas and air (more air than gas). Getting that mixture in a closed pipe, along the entire pipe, would near impossible without some pre-mixing first before the fire. Also if fires could be transmitted via the gas pipe ...


9

You haven't mentioned whether this is natural gas or propane. If natural gas, then use the analog dials (or digital read-out) on your gas meter. Hopefully your meter will have a dial or indication for a small unit like 1/2 cubic foot. Attempt the following only if you're familiar with procedures for re-lighting any pilot lights your appliances may have. Shut ...


8

It is (very) surprising that the gas company (Xcel) says "everything's fine." This document from a different gas company certainly calls out non-blue flames as an issue that needs to be resolved. As does this site. And Xcel themselves. Happening on all appliances does seem a bit less likely to be "and suddenly the air adjustments on all three went whacky" ...


8

You would need to find out who the authority having jurisdiction is. Often time, it is the city, county, or township where you are located. In some cases, it might be the state as well (in MN for electrical, for example). The wording is a little ambiguous, however. They could mean: You (the owner) pull the permit, but put down that the contractor is doing ...


8

Just an experienced digger answer here... I worked for landscaping companies in my teens and while some of the lawns were marked, many were not. Basically you want use a tipped shovel - not a straight edge and dig down around 45 degrees and about 10 inches down at a time, one shovel full. Not fool-proof as anything can happen but if you do this you are 99....


8

First convince yourself. Soapy water can be tricky - you may not see small bubbles in hard to observe places. The right amount of soap in the water is tricky as well. Try to hear the leak. You may need to ask people in the house to go out and/or stay quiet for a while and/or turn off noisy equipment (heating, washing machine, etc). You may also need few ...


7

Sounds like a liability issue. If they hook it up and the line breaks or leaks, they can be held liable. They probably want a gas flex line (something like this) installed between the copper and appliance. If I were you, I'd get a gasfitter out to have one installed and hook up the appliance (which means future deliverers will install it). You don't want to ...


7

99% sure this will be a thermostat that needs batteries. A fairly common approach to getting "smart" features without changing from old two-wire (heat only) mechanical thermostat wiring. I've lived with several variants - the batteries and method to get to the batteries can be less than obvious, depending on the design. If new batteries don't solve it, then ...


7

No, that's not a valve. It looks like a drain, as might be useful if the fitting had been installed in a fire sprinkler or steam line, or functionally just an odd-ball tee fitting.


6

You need a 3/8" female NPT x 3/8" male flare thread adapter. Any good hardware store or plumbing shop.


6

A gas pipe is filled with nearly 100% flammable gas—at least under normal conditions. Propane and natural gas need to be mixed with air (or oxygen) to be combustible. The ideal combination for natural gas is 1 part fuel (by volume) to 9.7 parts dry air. A mixture of more than 15% (1 to 6.67) natural gas is not combustible! So, no. Under normal ...


6

Being in the plumbing industry most of my adult life, if you are going to go to the trouble of raising the heater just a few inches, you might want to look at relocating the heater entirely. I have never seen a "smitty pan" save a home from a major water leak.


5

A ground joint union has an angle cut (ground) into the union where the two sections mate. This provides more surface area at the joint, and allows the joint to seat more easily. This is in comparison to a flat faced union, which does not have an angle ground at the mating surface.


5

I had the same problem when converting mine. The pipes have been subjected to repeated extreme heat and cooling cycles and will be difficult to unthread. Your best bet is to soak with penetrating oil (slide some cardboard under prior to spraying so you don't soak the bricks). Soak repeatedly and tap the pipes frequently to help the oil penetrate into the ...


5

A gas line is usually either iron or steel (older installations) or HDPE (i.e. plastic used in newer installations) and either one can be damaged by careless excavation. Often the steel/iron lines have been buried for a long time and have been weakened by corrosion both internally and externally. HDPE does not corrode but is fairly soft and can be cut by a ...


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