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Old 11-17-2019, 09:55 AM   #1
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Questions About Plumbing for Propane

I am looking at a used cooktop that I would have to convert for propane use. It has a regulator at the appliance. If I regulate the propane at the tank, do I need a regulator at the cooktop? I would also like to operate a tankless water heater. At this moment I am not sure whether it will have its own regulator. So, how best to plumb for propane in such a situation?
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Old 11-17-2019, 10:12 AM   #2
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Regulators on both. Only 1 regulator/appliance. Is the cooktop setup for propane or natural gas? You'll need to know, as regulator and nozzle sizes are different.

Some ideas on plumbing propane appliances without needing hard piping installed:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...ZVSLD8MY&psc=1
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...ZVSLD8MY&psc=1

You'll need to know the inlet fitting sizes of each appliance to ensure proper fitment.
As you are likely aware, propane can be extremely dangerous if not installed properly. Take your time, ensure fittings are tight, then using dish soap and water sprayed on all mechanical connections to check for leaks after pressurizing these appliances with propane.

If unsure of anything, seek out a qualified plumber to ensure your safety.
Good luck...
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Old 11-17-2019, 10:33 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peteg59 View Post
Regulators on both. Only 1 regulator/appliance. Is the cooktop setup for propane or natural gas? You'll need to know, as regulator and nozzle sizes are different.

Some ideas on plumbing propane appliances without needing hard piping installed:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...ZVSLD8MY&psc=1
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...ZVSLD8MY&psc=1

You'll need to know the inlet fitting sizes of each appliance to ensure proper fitment.
As you are likely aware, propane can be extremely dangerous if not installed properly. Take your time, ensure fittings are tight, then using dish soap and water sprayed on all mechanical connections to check for leaks after pressurizing these appliances with propane.

If unsure of anything, seek out a qualified plumber to ensure your safety.
Good luck...
The cooktop is a nice two burner KitchenAid unit set up for natural gas. It is old enough that KitchenAid does not support it with parts for propane conversion. I think that I can still manage to get it to work with propane by changing the orifices and using a regulator sourced elsewhere. Pipe dope and bubble soap will be my close companions for the project
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Old 11-17-2019, 10:44 AM   #4
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Make sure you don’t use the dope with flare fittings.
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Old 11-17-2019, 10:47 AM   #5
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I like continuous piping in closed areas.. ie continuous copper tube through the walls. and the joints are located somewhere that is not completely sealed.. meaning where air can get to it.. that way a small leak either produces an odor or dissipates .. joints are easily tested for leaks since they are accessible..



definitely a regulator at the tank so you run already lowered pressure gas through your piping asnd then a regulator at each appliance.. not sure i'd hack together a gas cooking appliance, but thats just me when it comes to fire...


also remember if you are using copper piping dont us compression... either braze the lines or flare fittings...
-Christopher
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Old 11-17-2019, 11:12 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by cadillackid View Post
I like continuous piping in closed areas.. ie continuous copper tube through the walls. and the joints are located somewhere that is not completely sealed.. meaning where air can get to it.. that way a small leak either produces an odor or dissipates .. joints are easily tested for leaks since they are accessible..



definitely a regulator at the tank so you run already lowered pressure gas through your piping asnd then a regulator at each appliance.. not sure i'd hack together a gas cooking appliance, but thats just me when it comes to fire...


also remember if you are using copper piping dont us compression... either braze the lines or flare fittings...
-Christopher
Never have brazed copper only soldered. Flaring it’s not too hard though, and there’s always that corrugated steel flex tubing.
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Old 11-17-2019, 12:15 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by peteg59 View Post
Regulators on both. Only 1 regulator/appliance. Is the cooktop setup for propane or natural gas? You'll need to know, as regulator and nozzle sizes are different.

Some ideas on plumbing propane appliances without needing hard piping installed:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...ZVSLD8MY&psc=1
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...ZVSLD8MY&psc=1

You'll need to know the inlet fitting sizes of each appliance to ensure proper fitment.
As you are likely aware, propane can be extremely dangerous if not installed properly. Take your time, ensure fittings are tight, then using dish soap and water sprayed on all mechanical connections to check for leaks after pressurizing these appliances with propane.

If unsure of anything, seek out a qualified plumber to ensure your safety.
Good luck...
Don’t use those hoses.

Read NFPA 1192.
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Old 11-17-2019, 12:45 PM   #8
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Flaring copper coil is easy, copper pipe, not so much.
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Old 11-17-2019, 05:09 PM   #9
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Read NFPA 1192.
Funny guy...
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Old 11-17-2019, 05:17 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by wrenchtech View Post
The cooktop is a nice two burner KitchenAid unit set up for natural gas. It is old enough that KitchenAid does not support it with parts for propane conversion. I think that I can still manage to get it to work with propane by changing the orifices and using a regulator sourced elsewhere. Pipe dope and bubble soap will be my close companions for the project
It would be a good idea to bench test the stove with propane before you install it.
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Old 11-17-2019, 05:37 PM   #11
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I have acquired this KitchenAid cooktop, some orifices, and I am going to order these cheap imported regulators (because there are no other kind). The green regulator is a popular item on Amazon, which lots of reviewers are saying they used to repair gas grills and turkey fryers. It works with 30 psi at the inlet and puts out 9" W.C. (0.325 psi) I will replace the nat gas regulator that came with the cooktop with it, and regulate the tank output down to 30 psi with this red regulator.









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Old 11-17-2019, 05:38 PM   #12
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It would be a good idea to bench test the stove with propane before you install it.
Absolutely!
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Old 11-17-2019, 09:07 PM   #13
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The flare on copper tubing used to carry propane MUST be perfect. Flaring isn't rocket science but a bad flare like this "factory original" I discovered in my new to me stove and heater propane set up could turn your bus into a rocket. Note the small crack in the bell of the flare. That tiny crack leaked enough propane to add a peculiar aroma to my bus from time to tine but never enough of a leak to set off the propane sniffer. Soap suds didn't show a leak--until I pressurized the complete system with 10 psi air and that did it. Jack

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Old 11-17-2019, 09:23 PM   #14
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Personally I would use a NiCop (nickle-copper alloy) line and double flare the ends like a brake line. The NiCop is much stronger but still easy to bend and flare, the double flare is much stronger than a single, way less likely to crack from the vibration.
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Old 11-17-2019, 10:14 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Danjo View Post
Don’t use those hoses.

Read NFPA 1192.
So, what's wrong with using hoses specifically made for propane appliances?

Also, how about posting a link to what you think applies in NFPA 1192 for RV's, without having to purchase an $80. manual. Thanks, in advance...
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Old 11-17-2019, 10:20 PM   #16
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So, what's wrong with using hoses specifically made for propane appliances?
Outdoor use only.
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Old 11-17-2019, 10:31 PM   #17
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Outdoor use only.
I'm not seeing the notation "Outdoor use only" on those hoses. They're made for Mr.Buddy, and other propane heaters and cookers that can be used inside a bus.

I have seen a Coleman single burner propane cooker that is labeled for outdoor use only, but what's the difference between that and the propane stove tops found in commercially made RV's that are perfectly safe to use inside?

Seems safe enough to me, and I'd certainly take my chances with those S/S braided/covered propane appliance hoses over a "bare" rubber hose...
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Old 11-17-2019, 10:54 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by peteg59 View Post
I'm not seeing the notation "Outdoor use only" on those hoses. They're made for Mr.Buddy, and other propane heaters and cookers that can be used inside a bus.

I have seen a Coleman single burner propane cooker that is labeled for outdoor use only, but what's the difference between that and the propane stove tops found in commercially made RV's that are perfectly safe to use inside?

Seems safe enough to me, and I'd certainly take my chances with those S/S braided/covered propane appliance hoses over a "bare" rubber hose...
Except for abrasion there isn’t any difference between that and a bare hose, except that you wouldn’t be able to see the a potential problem under it. I would consider any “rubber” hose, armored or not, to be an outdoor-only gas line. Maybe you never have a problem. Doesn’t seem worth the chance of a fitting blowing off while you’re cooking.
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Old 11-18-2019, 12:02 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by banman View Post
Personally I would use a NiCop (nickle-copper alloy) line and double flare the ends like a brake line. The NiCop is much stronger but still easy to bend and flare, the double flare is much stronger than a single, way less likely to crack from the vibration.
I have made my own brake lines out of that stuff. My only question is, will it work with the fittings that are available to connect to appliances and pipe.
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Old 11-18-2019, 02:31 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by peteg59 View Post
So, what's wrong with using hoses specifically made for propane appliances?

Also, how about posting a link to what you think applies in NFPA 1192 for RV's, without having to purchase an $80. manual. Thanks, in advance...
Not speaking specifically to the issue of propane, but the reason I try to learn and comply with even remotely applicable building codes, where they don't conflict with other more applicable codes or obvious common-sense for a particular situation, is because of what I don't know, rather than what I do. I view building codes as, at least in part, the collective trial & error knowledge of countless builders, over a great expanse of time. It's the answer to all those "why can't I use x here" questions without having burn down something to realize what didn't appear obvious at first glance. Not saying code adherence is the only answer, or even the best. But IMO, if you're going to conflict with code, it should be based on a thorough understanding of the situations such code was meant to prevent, as well as how your solution will better address such issues.

Also - NFPA 1192 is specifically for RVs. So everything in it applies to RVs

Finally, you can create a free account & view any of those documents online, Pete. Just click on the 'free access' button, and it will prompt you to create a free login account if you don't have one already:

https://www.nfpa.org/codes-and-stand...tail?code=1192
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