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3 Pitfalls To Avoid When Fitting New Gas Appliances

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Whether you're installing a new water heater, dryer, or stove, taking the right precautions to avoid leaks and hazards are important in maintaining a healthy and efficient gas heating system. Natural gas is an affordable and reliable way to power many of your home appliances, and when properly installed, can be a safe option that can serve your family for years to come. So when you're installing a new appliance into your existing unit or if you've decided to upgrade an older utility, there are three pitfalls you should be aware of before you get started with fitting new gas appliances.

Kinked Copper Pipelines

Kinked copper pipelines can be a hazard that can not only limit the flow of gas into your appliance, but also cause loose fittings and consequential leaks over time. Copper pipes are commonly utilized for home heating appliances and gas connections, but kinked or bent lines can cause unnoticeable leaks that are dangerous to use. Before you install any new appliance that has copper pipeline included or if you're fitting onto an existing pipe from a wall or gas unit, visually inspect the line for noticeable kinks. If you see kinks, don't try to unbend the pipe, as this can damage the soft metal even further. The best bet for a kinked copper pipeline is to install a new one.

Dated Fittings

Dated valves are prone to leaking over time and with heavy use, as older-style valves don't close as completely as newer ball-style ones do. So if you live in a home that still uses valves with metal levers that open and close the valve, switch out to ones that are ball valves and have rubber or vinyl coatings on the lever. Ball valves will prevent back flow and leaking, which older valves cannot ensure.

Non-Conforming Materials  

Trying to thread different types of materials together can often be accomplished with fittings you'd find in a hardware store, but connecting non-conforming materials can still cause unsafe conditions due to different rates of expansion and corrosion over time. Never connect copper to steel, even if you can find a fitting or make adjustments with teflon tapes or adhesives. Wherever possible, connect like materials with universal connectors to avoid poor fitting that can cause leaks and improper flow, even if you have to make upgrades to your dated pipes. If you have inflexible steel pipes, you should also consider upgrading to stainless steel tubing, so you can avoid leaks and breaks that come with corrosion.

Though some gas fitting can be safely accomplished on a DIY basis, if you aren't sure or aren't experience, you should always hire a licensed gas fitter. Only a gas fitter will be able to tell you if your system is safe and efficient for everyday usage after installation of your new appliances. Click here for more info.