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Old 05-09-2009, 05:28 PM   #1
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PVC line on natural gas line for BBQ


Sorry if this is in the wrong category, but any help is very much appreciated:

Our natural gas, built in BBQ got old. We bought a new one.
When I pulled out the old one, I noticed the pipe coming out of the ground looked like PVC, but was yellowish in color.
The plastic pipe transitioned to the usual corrugated looking flexible line with the flared end that is used for example in water heaters. The transition was a strange looking metal pipe which I could not see how it joined the plastic.
When I put the new BBQ in, I smelled gas. Couldn't tell where the leak was since the opening for the BBQ in the block wall structure used to make the built-in was barely enough for me to fit in.
Nonetheless, I went in after taking the new BBQ out, and cut the PVC looking pipe below the transition point. So, now I had the corrugated line with the metal transition piece in hand and could look at the transition. It looked like the PVC was somehow stuck into the metal pipe. I took it to Home Depot of course. The guy said the plastic was NOT PVC and PEX. He recommended going to a plumbing supply place which I did. They told me it was NOT PEX but indeed PVC even though the color was yellow.
He said they do not make the union/transition any more. They had the PEX transition (metal to pex) but not the same with PVC as in the piece I had in my hand. He said I was stuck?!!
Well so that's why I am writing.
1- Has anyone ever seen PVC used for natural gas? The BBQ was put in when the house was built in 1990 or so and I suspect the had a permit and it passed code.
2- If PVC is usually used, can I just get a PVC piece to put on the pipe out of the ground to join it to say a short galvanized bushing which can then be transitioned to the corrugated flexible pipe with flared end and simply use that? What are the issues? There is already a couple of PVC joints in the pipe out of the ground (and used to be one where I cut it). The union will be about two feet below the BBQ bottom (where it used to be). Is there an issue about heat getting to the plastic pipe and possibly the joint?

I already tried this joint (PVC union which threads into a galvanized bushing which then can be adapted to the corrugated flexible line) using now a valve (I bought separately) at the end of the flared end which usually goes to the BBQ and turned on the gas and observed no leaks (I shut off the valve to mimic the case when BBQ is there with its valve). But I am hesitant to put the BBQ back in.
Again, any help is appreciated.
Thanks

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Old 05-09-2009, 10:10 PM   #2
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PVC line on natural gas line for BBQ


There is yellow plastic ( as I call it) pipe that is approved for gas below ground only. You can buy special fittings to go from this to steel.Usually, You will have to purchase it from someone that supplies this type pipe to gas utilities. You may find it at a plumbing supply house.. Not box stores

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Old 05-09-2009, 10:58 PM   #3
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PVC line on natural gas line for BBQ


Why are you messing with this?

The yellow pipe is Polyethylene. It's not for the DIYer at all. Stop messing with it. Get a licensed plumber to come look at it. You'll be lucky if he can use what is left of your handy work and not have to run a new line.

Once again, this is NOT PVC. Don't try to kludge this together. Get a professional that knows what they are doing.
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Old 05-10-2009, 09:12 AM   #4
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PVC line on natural gas line for BBQ


Kenmac and Double A,
Thanks for the replies.

As I mentioned the person at home depot also said that it was not PVC, but when i took it to the plumbing store they said it was not PEX but rather PVC. He showed me the PEX stuff (which again is the same thing as polystyrene - PEX stands for polystyrene x-linked). Polystyrene cannot be glued using the PVC glue yet I tested some of the yellow stuff I had cut and it glued to other PVC pipe.
The adaptor Kenmac mentions is exactly what I was looking for and they did not have it for PVC. The guy said that they used to make it for PVC but not anymore given the use of PEX now. This line has been there for almost 20 years now.
I wonder if I have to rip up the entire outdoor cement that the gas line runs under (about 15 feet worth) to the valve on the wall which is itself on a metal pipe (like you see on the gas meter). The plastic line goes under the cement it looks like as I see no transition to a metal before it goes into the soil).

By the way, in my line of work, I work with highly explosive gases, but we do not use plastic piping except for short litlle lengths and I have lots of experience with those, but I am at a loss at the PVC usage (again not PEX, but I don't even understand the philosophy behind using PEX either).

Thanks again.
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Old 05-10-2009, 09:20 AM   #5
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PVC line on natural gas line for BBQ


Get a plumber in there.... You DON'T glue that stuff. you need the correct fittings designed for that and only that.. don't even play with it unless you want a gas leak. It is used commonly underground for gas.
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Old 05-10-2009, 09:50 AM   #6
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PVC line on natural gas line for BBQ


How large is the line ? You maybe able to turn the gas off , cut the line & insert copper tubing through the line where it goes under the concrete
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Old 05-10-2009, 10:13 AM   #7
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PVC line on natural gas line for BBQ


The connection you were wondering about is a speciallty item and needs to be done by a licensed person.
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Old 05-10-2009, 10:55 AM   #8
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PVC line on natural gas line for BBQ


Guys thanks again for the replies.

For others who may come across this issue:
Again this IS INDEED PVC.

It is NOT the other stuff (polyethylene- PEX, PE, etc ect) that needs the special connections. PVC was used 20 years ago (also found it at plbg.com forum as well). PVC cannot be bent , while the other stuff (PE) can and that's why it is used, due to its flexibility.

I found the web site that still sells PVC (colored yellow to set it apart from water lines in case someone is cutting into it). The web site is iplex.com. These go together with the usual PVC glues. Because it IS PVC. They sell those on that same web site as well. This PVC can withstand 15 psi which is plenty for natural gas.

They have gone away from PVC for gas in homes most likely because it could be confused with a water line. But for us with older homes we still have the PVC under our cement!!

Thanks again.
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Old 05-10-2009, 12:40 PM   #9
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PVC line on natural gas line for BBQ


You can do as you wish, but since codes change, and you are replacing part of the gas line, your insurance may not cover if there is a fire or explosion.
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Old 05-10-2009, 09:13 PM   #10
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PVC line on natural gas line for BBQ


Nikroo, where are you located?

iPlex.com.au is an Australian company. I still advise you to quit messing with this stuff. I don't care if you do customer service for an aspirin company. Your training does not qualify you to deal with a product you know little about, have not identified properly, and have not had identified properly.

You or someone with your same story has posted this question on several plumbing forums and it seems that you are picking and choosing the answers you like. Quick screwing around with your family's and your neighbor's safety and get someone out there that knows what they are doing.
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Old 05-11-2009, 05:51 AM   #11
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PVC line on natural gas line for BBQ


I have said it many times in this forum. don't fool around with gas. Get a professional in there to get it done.
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Old 05-11-2009, 06:01 AM   #12
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PVC line on natural gas line for BBQ


If you insist on continuing messing with it yourself, PLEASE be sure to make a video. It can be used it the future to show the explosive properties of natural gas.
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Old 05-11-2009, 06:42 AM   #13
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PVC line on natural gas line for BBQ


Quote:
Originally Posted by JDC View Post
If you insist on continuing messing with it yourself, PLEASE be sure to make a video. It can be used it the future to show the explosive properties of natural gas.
this reminds me of a little joke.
a guy was going to parachute out of an airplane for the first time and he was nervous as hell. So when he was on his way down he forgot how to open his chute. well he was fumbling with it when he looked off to his side and he saw a guy going upwards. so he looked at the guy and ask him
hey bud you know anything about parachutes and the guy told him no but do you know anything about natural gas lines.
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Old 05-11-2009, 07:23 AM   #14
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omg that was hilarious! thanks for the laugh!!!
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Old 05-11-2009, 10:31 PM   #15
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PVC line on natural gas line for BBQ


Quote:
Originally Posted by SULTINI View Post
OP, Read post # 6 again and consider what the question was.

Sounds like the way to go if you can.
Gas under concrete in our area must be sealed at both ends and vented so that no gas may build up under the concrete in the event of a leak. You can check with your local inspector for your local regs.

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