Is a gas line partially outside the house okay to feed a fireplace?
October 22, 2019 7:46 AM   Subscribe

We are thinking of converting our wood burning fireplace to gas. Our house is 100+ years old and utilities are oddly configured, so the contractors have suggested piping outside and then along the house and back in (a total exposed run of 15 feet or so). They say it's normal and the internet seems to agree. Gas-fireplace-havers or contractors of Metafilter: do you have or install outside gas lines? Do you have any issues with it? I don't have to do this project so I want to be sure it's an appropriate choice.
posted by AgentRocket to Home & Garden (17 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Best answer: The gas line for my stove is run outside. No issues.
posted by something something at 8:04 AM on October 22, 2019

Best answer: Is your gas meter mounted on the side of your house like mine? If so you already have above-ground outdoor gas lines.

But this sounds like botch work, the kind of thing the cable company does because they're in a hurry. Get a second opinion maybe?
posted by fritley at 8:11 AM on October 22, 2019 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Gas mains being outside the house are mandatory now in Ontario construction, for whatever that's worth.
posted by mhoye at 8:13 AM on October 22, 2019 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I'm looking into doing this for a fireplace and this is what our contractors suggested (in Massachusetts)
posted by jessamyn at 8:16 AM on October 22, 2019

Best answer: We run our stove off of propane, and the tanks and part of the line are outside. It hasn’t been a problem.
posted by leahwrenn at 8:31 AM on October 22, 2019

Best answer: My last house [in Rhode Island] was this way when we bought it. We pulled out that line, but it wasn't weird or dangerous or anything -- we just didn't want it.
posted by wenestvedt at 10:27 AM on October 22, 2019

Best answer: Mine is outside. I’m still alive.

So far.
posted by HotToddy at 11:08 AM on October 22, 2019

Response by poster: Ok, 7 for 7. GAME OOOOOOOOOONNNNNNN!

Thanks, everyone.
posted by AgentRocket at 11:18 AM on October 22, 2019

If a gas pipe is going to leak, far better that it's not surrounded by wall cavities that could allow an explosive concentration to form. Outside is as well ventilated as you can get. And unlike with water, there's no issue with freezing.
posted by flabdablet at 12:14 PM on October 22, 2019 [2 favorites]

I'm in Colorado where it often gets below 0. I've had no problems with that same set up here for over 20 years.
posted by BoscosMom at 12:23 PM on October 22, 2019

I just had my house renovated last year. The line to our fireplace is all outdoors.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 1:04 PM on October 22, 2019

If the exterior piping will be alongside a driveway, you could consider guard posts to reduce the likelihood of the pipe getting damaged by someone backing into it.
posted by lakeroon at 1:08 PM on October 22, 2019 [1 favorite]

Mine is outside. It’s fine.
posted by slateyness at 1:12 PM on October 22, 2019

My parents have this. As a bonus, they installed a gas grill and tapped into the line — no more propane tanks.
posted by curious nu at 1:14 PM on October 22, 2019 [1 favorite]

If the gas is propane there might be an issue if you get a really really REALLY cold day as the melting point of propane is about -42 so you could get liquid propane in the gas line. I really doubt that this would happen, but it is a possibility. On the other hand I think most natural gas lines are not propane and instead mostly methane and a bit of ethane, which would mean that you're not going to have a problem unless it gets down to -88 for the ethane and -162 for the methane. If it gets that cold you have completely different problems to worry about before you care about the gas line liquefying.
posted by koolkat at 12:56 AM on October 23, 2019

Response by poster: UPDATE: the fireplace was installed in less than 2 hours and the pipes are totally unobtrusive and we have used it every day and it is freaking great.
posted by AgentRocket at 7:28 AM on November 13, 2019 [2 favorites]

« Older Music that’s “a little bit metal”   |   styrofoam plant Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.