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Old 10-11-2013, 09:59 PM   #1
jho
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Extending gate and fence


Hello everyone! I hope I'm in the right forum. I am thinking of taking on a project tomorrow, and know of all the tools needed to complete the job. I just have a few questions on whether I'm safe doing it without having to pull any permits or have companies come out to mark gas/electric lines.

My wife and I have a fenced in backyard with a gate on the driveway, and our side entry door is on the outside of the gate. Our objective is to have the side entry on the inside of the fenced in area, so that we don't have to put on our boots in the middle of winter to walk our dog out the door to the gate, to let her into the backyard. Moving the gate up would eliminate that hassle, where we can just simply open the door to let her in/out.

I understand that code says the posts need to be 43 inches deep into the ground here in Michigan, and gas/electric lines are typically 24 or so inches deep. My driveway, which is a single car width driveway, runs right up the side of my house, and the holes I would be drilling for the posts are on the other side of the driveway. These holes will be about 5 feet away from my neighbor's house, but a foot away from my driveway. I only have two holes I need to drill, each 7 feet (in a line) apart. What are the chances I'm going to hit a gas/electric line? I'm a handy guy, have painted houses for over 18 years and now own a painting business, but haven't done much of this kind of work. Any and all help would be appreciated! I'm heading off to bed now, but will be back on first thing in the morning to respond to anyone who may need more info to give more accurate, sound advice.

I can post pictures tomorrow if that would be more helpful.

Thanks much!

John

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Old 10-12-2013, 04:28 AM   #2
Bill Kearney
 
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Extending gate and fence


The correct course of action is to call the local utility and have them come out and mark where the lines are going. Around here they call it 'Miss Utility'. There are some ways to make an educated guess about where lines might be running. Like if there's a meter on a nearby wall, or there's a shut-off in a line to/from the building. But bear in mind things like gas lines can be run off a tee connection, so a line might come straight from the main and then tee off to two different houses. We had that in our old place, it ran straight up the driveway from the street and then split into a tee about 30' back, feeding both houses. When we recently rebuilt it we had them move the line to avoid the chance of needing to break the driveway ever again.

So you really do need to call first before digging.

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Old 10-12-2013, 07:39 AM   #3
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Extending gate and fence


Thanks Bill. I believe here it's 1-800-MISS-DIG, to get the utility companies to come out. Also, would I have to pull a permit? And not being a licensed contractor (not required for painters here in Michigan), can I even pull a permit or would I have to get a licensed contractor to do it?
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