Kramer Plumbing and Radiant Heat has been working with gas lines throughout Alberta for many years now, and I have been gas fitting for over 25 years.
Gas lines in Edmonton are used pretty much for the same sort of appliances as in other parts of the country. The appliances may be different as gas burns at different rates based on the altitude of where you life. Edmonton is considered high altitude, so if you are buying an appliance off the internet you may have to change the orifices and the rating plate to make the gas fixture burn properly.
City of Edmonton Permits
When running gas lines for a new, future, or existing fixture you will need to get a permit from the City of Edmonton. If you are hiring a gas fitter in Edmonton or a plumbing company in Edmonton you will have that person or that company get the permit for you. You can only pull the permit if YOU are doing the work. If someone claims to be a gas fitter and wants you to pull the permit then most likely they do not have the proper qualifications to run your gas line. This is not the time to save a couple of 100 bucks, having your gas line installed properly is important for you and your family and could cause problems later on down the road.
Material For Your Gas Line
Depending on the job you are doing will dictate what material you are allowed to use. Your gas fitter might be using black iron, plastic tube, gastite, gastrac, or copper tubing. Some of these materials are required for underground gas lines and others just speed up the job. For instance gastite and gastrac is much more expensive that black iron but the time to install is much faster, making the job about the same price. But if you are installing a gas line below 6 feet then you would have to install the gastite inside a sleeve, which now makes black iron a better choice. You would have to paint the black iron afterwards to protect from rusting.
Your gas fitter also has to pay attention to the flow rate differences for each type of material. A half inch black iron pipe can carry natural gas further than copper or gastite can. This means that if your gas line has a certain load to carry for a certain distance you may have to run a larger pipe for some material as compared with other materials.
Sometimes the existing pipe was sized for the existing load. Which makes sense, but if this happens and you want a new stove or cooktop or other gas appliance installed then we have to go back to within 2 feet of the meter to make sure we have enough gas for the required load. That is why it is important to always get a quote from your plumber before you go out and buy your new gas range or cooktop. If you are going to switch from electrical to gas and you get a $700 quote over the phone you might be in for a surprise when they show up and have to run the pipe back to the meter to allow for the proper load.
Gas Line Inspection
After we complete your gas line installation we will call for an inspection from the City of Edmonton. Once again the type of material used will dictate what happens here. If we had to use black iron then we will have an air test on the line for the inspector to see, if we used gastite then we will do a hookup and soap test under the pressure of the gas.
In either case the inspector will look at the line to make sure the installation was done properly and according to the gas code. (CSA B-149) Once all requirements are met the inspector will place a green approval sticker on the line. If the line fails then a red sticker will be placed on the line and changed will have to be made.
If you live on a farm or acreage outside of Edmonton and Sherwood Park you might not be on natural gas, you might instead have to be on Propane. If this is a deciding factor for you before you buy a home you should look further into what is required to keep your home working on Propane. There are two big differences with natural gas and propane. The first difference is natural gas is piped into your house from the mains under the road while Propane is trucked in the a tank that is sitting in your yard. The second difference is the temperatures where the gas turns into a liquid. Natural gas turns into a liquid at -160 C while propane turns into a liquid at -42 C. This can really cause problems on a very cold night. Something to think about.
Mercaptan is used in both natural gas and propane to give the gas an odor. Without this you would not be able to smell any leaks that you might have in your house. Just so you know, our noses are very sensitive to smell but become very desensitized quite quickly. If you do smell something call your provider right away and if you are having an appliance installed make sure the gas fitter you hire does not use the smell or flame method to check for leaks. The only safe way to check for leaks is with a soap test with approved soap.
If you need a gas line installed in your house or commercial property please give us a call at 780-264-0878
Kramer Plumbing and Radiant Heat