Gas Appliance Conversion
Making changes to a gas appliance so that it can utilize a different type of gas is known as conversion. The technicians at First Choice Appliance are experienced with converting appliances from Natural Gas to LP (Propane) and from LP to Natural Gas; as well as installing gas appliances with either LP or Natural Gas. Give us a call at (208) 610-3770 if your gas appliance needs a conversion!
Appliance conversion usually involves the replacement of gas burner orifices, adjustment of Venturi valves, switching over, or replacement of gas pressure regulators, and adjustment of burner valve outputs.
Installing a new gas appliance
Before installing a new gas appliance, look at the model and serial label to determine that the appliance is made for the type of gas supplied in the home. Important: do not install an LP or LPG gas appliance when natural gas is supplied to the home. Similarly, do not install a natural gas appliance when LP or LPG gas is supplied to the home.
Types of Gas
The two most common gases that are used in homes in North Idaho today are Natural Gas (NG) and Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LP or LPG or Propane).
Natural gas is a naturally occurring product made up of hydrocarbon and non-hydrocarbon gases. Thus, the main ingredient found in natural gas is methane (70 to 90%), with the remainder of the ingredients being nitrogen, ethane, butane, carbon dioxide, oxygen, hydrogen sulfide, and propane. In North Idaho, you are most likely to have access to natural gas if you live in-town.
The pressure of natural gas that is supplied to a residence will vary between a 5- and 9-inch water column. To determine the correct pressure rating, refer to the manufacturer’s specifications or the installation instructions for your appliance.
Liquefied petroleum gas (Propane)
Liquefied petroleum gas (LP or LPG) is obtained from natural gas sources or as a by-product of refining oil. Everywhere in North Idaho, including Bonner, Boundary, and Kootenai Counties, LP is a common choice, especially in off-grid locations. LP gas for domestic use is usually propane, butane, or a mixture of the two. This type of gas is compressed and stored in storage tanks under pressure in a liquid state at approximately 250 PSI. However, the pressure in an LP tank will vary according to the surrounding temperatures and altitude. LP gas tanks can be transported to areas that are not supplied by natural gas lines.
LP or LPG gas pressure supplied to residential appliances, as established by the gas industry, is between 9- and 11-inch water column. To determine the correct pressure rating, refer to the manufacturer’s specifications or the installation instructions for your appliance.
Gas pressure regulator further reduces gas pressure to correct levels.