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Old 08-29-2014, 12:22 PM   #1
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I am going to be upgrading to NG (still at the road) on Van island BC. I will be trenching myself and running lines but will bring in the trades person at the end to complete all connections.
I am looking to immidiately hook-up furnace (60k BTU), and next year I would like to put in NG On-Demand water heater (two bath/dw & wm), and bbq.
I was wondering what size meter I should request for this. The manifold is going to be approx 30' from meter before connecting with end users. Is 2lbs a pretty safe bet for a 1200sq ft home? What other info are they going to want?

Also I'd like to get a head start on the plumbing of this. I used to be good with math, but when I looked at the charts I came to a conclusion that I would require a 1.5" line run to the manifold, which I'm sure can't be correct. Any direction from anyone?
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Old 08-29-2014, 12:28 PM   #2
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Do they allow you to do the trenching etc?

I have never heard of that. Usually they bring the service to the house from the road. You would need to know how to trench and bury it to code etc etc.

Total up the BTU's of the furnace/BBQ/water heater and then you know.

Make sure you have a licensed gas fitter who is willing to take out the permit for the furnace etc. Very rare that DIY gas work/installs happen in Canada. Very few fitters will hang their tag on a DIYer job. I won't as we are legally responsible forever.

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Old 08-29-2014, 12:53 PM   #3
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They charge $450 to dig a trench and lay the pipe, or they charge $25 to lay the pipe if I dig it out for them. I can dig a 30' hole 24" deep for $425. It s a long weekend, nothing better to do.
Very true. Incredibly hard to find a fitter, and although I don't blame the pro's, I find it hard to believe that "under the table deals" are becoming increasingly hard to find. It comes from too many people in the past that paid cash and still expected a warranty.
I do have a fitter lined up, but he is 2 hours away, and would rather not travel.

Anyways, back to my original thought. What is the actual unit of measure for the meter (is it ft*lbs/sec, or...) Obviously BTU or Joule doesn't convert over to weight (lbs) all that easily (or ever)
Edit: I'm planning to pull homeowner gas permit (little harder to get but doable after I study gas code for a few hours so I can hopefully answer any questions inspector has), than that way there is no liability on the fitter, it'll be on inspector hopefully. (and no I know I can't learn your job by reading a book)

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Old 08-29-2014, 01:53 PM   #4
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One reason the under the tables deals are become more rare is liability . Whether they offer a warranty or not they are liable for work. In the case of gas fitters the consequences of something going wrong are often catastrophic. Even if you pull the permit , the gas fitter is still liable.

I do some of own work, but I value my family too much to mess with any gas line that is more than the short hose for my propane grill .
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Old 08-29-2014, 02:20 PM   #5
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Check with your local gas authority.

In Manitoba there is NO such thing as a homeowner gas permit. Electrical for small stuff yes. Plumbing yes.

BC has some high level rules with fitters and proper apprentices etc and seriously follows the code to the T so I doubt they let DIYers take out permits. Whole different world up North than in the US.

The gas co decides on the meter size etc and unless you are doing a Commercial job they use a standard meter. We don't size it for them. They run high pressure to the meter anyway and then drop it down. Only difference I see is the size of the actual pipe after the meter. With a on demand water heater you have to run a full 1" pipe to it and not branch into it for the furnace. Then a separate one for the furnace but you still go off the same meter.

I don't do many of them and my plumbers do the water heaters and sizing that stuff.
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Old 08-29-2014, 02:59 PM   #6
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Beautiful, Thanks for the help. Gonna try and make it into permit office, I've got the homeowner gas application in hand, so going to talk with them and see.
I will brush up on the rules that are applicable to me from the library (hopefully), but likely I will be on again in the coming weeks and looking for some input. Cheers
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Old 08-29-2014, 04:13 PM   #7
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I cannot tell you the rules or walk you thru it. You need the Gas Code book and info on what the local inspectors like. It can vary from inspector to inspector or jurisdiction with certain ways they like things done. That is why there are Pros in your area who know.

Good Luck
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Old 08-29-2014, 05:42 PM   #8
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Gas meter is usually by cubic foot.
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Old 08-30-2014, 12:25 PM   #9
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Homeowners are allowed to pull permits in BC, but you need to check with your local inspector from the Safety Authority as some simply will not allow it. As for paying someone else to do the connection, no can do (if you can even find someone willing to do it, because they'd be taking responsibility for the job you did).


From the gas safety act:

"Homeowner may perform work under a permit
24 (1) A homeowner may apply for an installation permit to perform regulated work with respect to gas equipment in a fully detached dwelling if

(a) no person is being paid to do, or assist the owner in doing, the work, and
(b) no part of the dwelling is rented to any person."

It sounds like you'll need a 200 series meter (max. 300 cu. ft. @ 7" wc/350 cu. ft. @ 2 psi), but that's info the planner at the gas company will need before they'll schedule the install. They'll also need to know the delivery pressure you, or your gas fitter, will require. Your choices are 1.75 kPa (7" water column), which is lower pressure and will require larger diameter piping, or 14 kPa (2 psig), which can use smaller diameter piping, but will require regulators before the appliance to reduce the pressure. The meter installed may be in cubic feet or cubic meters, but this makes no difference other than when clocking the meter to determine appliance input.

OP's gas company allows the customer to dig their own trench from the meter location to the property line. The planner will give him the requirements, and the week of installation. If the crew shows up and it's not ready or not to spec, they pull the job and the customer will have to reschedule. If all is good, they install the line and meter. Many customers do just that in my area due to many installs being quite long and they can save a bit of money.
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Old 08-30-2014, 01:03 PM   #10
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Thanks for showing up. I was hoping you or How our other BC guy would. There is no way that would go on in MB but Provinces do vary.

The kicker is whether the inspector will allow it and IMO most are so anal and full of themselves and their perceived authority/ego that they won't or he will have a very miserable time getting it right.

Not worth the hassle IMO.
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Old 09-03-2014, 01:22 PM   #11
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Thanks for everything guys, Especially Benny. Sorry about the long delay, it was a busy outside work weekend. Gas company is booked and I'll have it all dug out for when they arrive (cost $25 vs $450 for them to dig it). Worth a bit of sweat.
Going to be installing the 2psig with regulators...haven't considered whether I can source those locally or not.
I spoke with the inspector yesterday and he seems very willing to give assistance (provided I ask the right questions). Will be dropping application off tomorrow now that I've got a full printout/schematics for him (i forgot the venting on the first run, and realized this as I walking to the front door of SA, stayed for the talk though).
Cheers
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Old 09-03-2014, 01:40 PM   #12
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These are the types of jobs that If a contractor knows about "risk management"-Its just not worth doing.

The customer may know the risks and accept them....but the contractor will be dealing with the "heirs" after the customer blows himself up.
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Old 09-03-2014, 02:41 PM   #13
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Personally I would NEVER hang my ticket on any job anyone else did. Only time I did was when my Apprentice did the work right beside me and I saw him do the joints etc.

I have dealt with the Dept of Labor and their Pro mechanical Engineers and lots of nasty business when CO poisoning or other issues happen. You are totally helpless and unless you have $$ for a lawyer it is an awful feeling. Like the Spanish Inquisition it is. Almost like you are guilty until proven innocent. Not worth doing IMO.
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Old 09-03-2014, 03:12 PM   #14
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Wow that sounds crazy to me that there would be a clause in the code regarding homeowners doing gas work, I mean you can do gas work in Ontario in your own house but if it doesn't have a gas tag on it then the homeowner is liable, and I'm with yuri I would never put my license on a DIY job.

As for the size of your gas line 1 1/2" would be far too high for a 1200sq ft house unless you're planning on having 3 fireplaces, 2 big bbqs, a pool heater and a stove in addition to your furnace and water tank. How many appliances are you putting in?
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Old 09-03-2014, 03:22 PM   #15
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Technically a smart guy could do gas piping and there are plumbers and steam fitters and others that would have no problem. The issue is when you bury a line and there is a leak for whatever reason later then the fitter may be responsible. Where I am the gas co supplies the meter up to the house and they are responsible. Saying a leak will never happen is wishful thinking and when it happens the Inquisition starts and it is BAD.

With high pressure to the meter and a 1 1/2" line from the outlet of it and a 1" line dedicated only for the tankless water heater and another 1" for the rest it should be OK.

Even with a regular meter we ran 275K furnaces and another 35K water heater with no problem on 1". As long as the line is under 50 feet it was OK.

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Last edited by yuri; 09-03-2014 at 03:25 PM.
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