PEX pipe is not the same as PE piping, and the two are frequently confused. Polyethylene, or PE, is a flexible plastic polymer that is ideal for piping in wells and other cold-water supply lines.
PEX stands for polyethylene that has been cross-linked. It’s made of polyethylene, a material with a stronger link between the polymer chains that make it up. PEX is now suited for both hot and cold water applications as a result of this advancement. It can also be utilized in some gas applications, depending on the building code.
PEX and PE are more flexible and have a significantly greater pressure rating than typical gas lines, thus they suit those requirements. They are, however, made of a soft material that could be damaged by nails, rodents, and other objects. As a result, in your location, either may not be permitted for use as a residential gas line. Even when the utility provider is able to install it, plumbers and homeowners are not always able to.
Is PEX suitable for natural gas lines?
Yes, but it’s crucial to define your intended usage before ordering polyethylene pipe for your project because the names PE and PEX are commonly used interchangeably.
There isn’t a single PE pipe I’ve seen that can’t be utilized for both natural gas and propane.
The difference in pressure between natural gas and propane at the house meter, measured in inches of water column, is less than one pound.
The majority of my clients were unaware of this.
In today’s world, we live in a plastic world, and plastic pipe is a fantastic product for natural gas and propane installations.
If you’re planning a DIY project involving gas piping, just make sure you purchase the correct material.
Then type in “PEX pipe” and take a look at the various applications for PEX pipe.
What kind of natural gas tubing is used?
Steel, black iron, polyvinyl chloride (PVC), high-density polyethylene (HDPE), and copper are the most popular materials used to build gas piping. Some of these materials are prohibited by some utilities, so check with your local utility to see what is permitted in your region before installing any. If you employ a professional to complete the task, they will be familiar with the local regulations.
Flexible Corrugated Stainless Steel Tubing
Corrugated stainless steel tubing is flexible and easy to install, and it works well in compact spaces and areas with a high risk of natural disasters. Flexible corrugated stainless steel tubing can crack over time, despite its ability to reduce damage. This material should only be used for indoor gas piping.
Galvanized steel gas pipes are both energy efficient and long-lasting. Galvanized steel pipes are suitable for water supply lines since they may be used for both interior and outside gas lines. Because it is labor-intensive compared to other materials, this material is commonly found in older homes and is not used in new structures nowadays.
The most frequent material used to manufacture gas pipes, both inside and outside, is black iron. The substance is durable, heat resistant, and can be molded into an airtight seal. Black iron, on the other hand, can corrode and its sealant erode over time. Consider contacting a professional for routine maintenance if your gas pipes are constructed of black iron.
Because PVC gas pipes are sturdy and corrosion-resistant, they’re ideal for underground outside gas lines. Although PVC pipes are a cost-effective option, some places do not allow them since they can break during installation.
HDPE pipes, like PVC pipes, are appropriate for buried outside lines. Although these plastic pipes are flexible and affordable, they can be damaged by subsurface material such as rocks and tree roots.
Some towns do not allow copper gas lines, therefore their use is limited. Copper pipes have severe code requirements that limit their use due to their estimated life of 20 years.
Is SharkBite suitable for natural gas?
Is it possible to use SharkBite fittings for purposes other than potable water and radiant heating (e.g., air, gas, oil, etc.)? No. SharkBite fittings are only approved for use with potable water and radiant heating systems.
Is PEX a gas-resistant material?
I looked over a few Chemical Resistance Charts for PEX tubing. The hydrocarbons in gasoline, as well as the alcohol additions, appear to have no long-term effect.
Is it possible to utilize plastic pipe to transport natural gas?
The most extensively utilized plastic piping material for natural gas distribution is polyethylene (PE) gas piping. PE’s inertness to both the external soil environment and natural gas has been widely demonstrated.
Is it possible to utilize a plastic gas line inside a house?
Utility companies have been distributing natural gas from transmission lines and terminals to customers for decades using plastic tubing buried in the ground. Because it does not corrode and does not require anticorrosion protection, this material is more durable than steel or copper. It may be found as easy as metallic pipe when buried with a tracer wire. Because plastic does not operate well under these pressures, high-pressure natural gas transmission lines are still made of steel (greater than 500 psi).
Is it possible to use a flexible gas line for the furnace?
Many furnace gas valves used to be directly attached to the flexible gas line connector. Installers have recently started extending black piping from the gas valve to the furnace cabinet’s outside.
The International Mechanical Code’s Section 304 INSTALLATION is changed by adding Section 304.12 as follows:
304.12 Gas valve installation Black Iron Pipe shall be installed at the gas valve and extended a minimum of two inches beyond the casing of the gas furnace and gas rooftop unit, and connected to an approved listed flexible gas connection.
It appears that extending black pipe is an AHJ-only technique, and that a flex line routed through a furnace casing to the gas valve may be permitted unless otherwise modified.
Check out the images. Please leave a comment. I’m looking for something in the code that’s as specific as the ordinance in San Antonio.
I’m looking into it because an inspector was reprimanded for failing to require the black pipe. The expert who testified against the inspector merely stated that his opinion was incorrect.
Is it possible to utilize copper wires for natural gas?
Nothing, including copper, is corroded by natural gas. Corrosion is a chemical reaction that occurs when metal and oxygen come into contact. Any corrosion would be caused by the oxygen in the normal air that is mixed in with the gas. Heat and moisture can also hasten the rusting process. Is it conceivable that the pipe was clogged by humidity or water? Sorry, but I don’t have any information about gas pipe specifications! I strongly advise you to use whatever material is current under California law. Natural gas leaks aren’t something you want to take lightly.
Is it possible to utilize a flexible gas line for a fireplace?
Let’s clear some things up if you’re wondering what all the fuss is about flexible gas lines. Corrugated stainless-steel tubing is used to make flexible gas lines (CSST). These stainless steel pipes are incredibly flexible and are usually coated in a distinctive yellow casing, though they can also be black. Natural gas may now be delivered to your fireplace, furnace, stovetop, and any other natural gas-powered appliances thanks to this ingenious redesign of the classic black steel pipes.