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Converting From Oil Furnaces to Natural Gas In NE USA States Means Adding Gas Safety Devices, Too.

by Barbara 4. December 2014 09:04

Question about safety issues when converting from oil heat to gas heat.

Q: "A natural gas shale line from Marcellus Shale gas in Pennsylvania may extend into the Northeastern states in the next year, if approved (Quote from CBS 12/3/2014) We currently are using oil heat. Replacing the furnace with natural gas will save us a lot of money. How can we avoid the health risks associated with natural gas?"Thanks Tom.

Answer: Continue using carbon monoxide alarms and smoke detectors as you have been doing, remembering to test them monthly and change batteries once a year. I would also suggest you add a Scentry III Gas Shut Off system on your main line into the home as well as Safe-T-Alert Combustible Gas Alarm or a Safety Siren III natural gas alarm near your natural gas appliances such as ranges, fireplaces, etc.

With the Scentry III GFRAB, you can add additional remote sensors, a battery back-up and a connection to a home monitoring system if you have one or plan to get one.

Remember that natural gas is lighter than air and "puddles" at the ceiling above the appliance using it. If near an open stairway, the gas will go to the top of the stairway.

An annual furnace tune up with filter change is needed with gas furnaces as well as with oil. If you want the best disposable furnace filters, use the 4 inch or 1 inch Safe Home filters.

Thanks for your questions.

Sincerely,

Barbara

 

Which Gas Detector Do I Need? I Have Anosmia.

by Barbara 11. August 2008 09:27

Q: "I have anosmia, i.e. I have lost my sense of smell. We have natural gas heat, a natural gas water heater and a natural gas cooking stove. I cannot smell a gas leak. Which gas detector do you recommend?"

Answer: Currently, we sell two brands of combustible gas alarms and an automatic gas shut off system that shuts off gas and sounds a loud alarm when a significant gas leak occurs.

Two brands are UL1484 listed for use with natural gas and propane gas and also work with gasoline fumes and butane fumes. These are the Safe-T-Alert 40-411AC and the Safety Siren Combustible Gas Alarm and the Safety Siren CO and Combustible Gas Alarm.

The advantage of the Safe-T-Alert is the long cord for proper positioning of the detector, i.e. high and near the appliance for natural gas and low and near the appliance for propane. We also sell the Safe-T-Alert Combustible Gas Alarm in a 230VAC unit for Europe and Asia. The Safety Siren unit is a direct plug in with a safety tab that the outlet cover center screw (standard 2 or 3 prong outlet) goes through so the unit cannot be easily removed. Most customers who buy the Safety Siren model install an electrical outlet at the proper height for natural gas or propane.

All our combustible gas alarms sound at less than 25% of the lower explosive or flammable level of the gas.

The Scentry III GFRAB propane/natural gas detector is only one component of this home safety system. The GFRAB means Gas, Feet on the bottom of the case, Remote, Alarm and Battery. To have a complete system, you need these additional components:

As noted above, the compatible valves are in .5, .75 and 1 inch sizes. Each valve is an electrically operated gas shut off valve that opens and closes on a demand signal from a thermostat or other controlling device. Can be used with both natural gas and LP gas at pressures up to 0.5 psi. The White Rodgers replacement is a compression spring closing and soft seat construction gas valve.

The advantage of this system is that the controller unit supports up to 5 calibrated remote sensors.

Scentry III-GFRAB Specifications:

  • Case: ABS Plastic
  • Physical Size: 7.6 inches by 4.6 inches
  • Weight: 2.25 lbs
  • Color: Gray
  • Power consumption: 1.5va
  • Supports up to 5 calibrated remote sensors (not included)
  • Requires Scentry III-GVD gas valve (purchase separately)
  • Supports Battery Back-Up (Not Included)
  • Supports Gas Valve Controller for Explosive Gas (Not Included)
  • Connections: screw terminals
  • Input Power: 115VAC, 60 Hz
  • Output Control Relays: 2 amps,
  • 24 VAC Alarm Signal
  • Output: 12V DC @500 ma
  • Reset: manual
  • Sensor Type: Tin Dioxide Semiconductor
  • Alarm Points: Propane (LP) <5200 PPM Alarm Points: Natural Gas / Methane <12,200 PPM
  • Manufactured Proudly in the USA for Safety First USA, Inc.
  • Warranty: 1 year from date of purchase.

Thanks for your question. Just remember propane gas and natural gas are safe sources of energy if you add protective measures including alarms, shut off valves and regular maintenance of the appliances that use gas.

Sincerely,

Barbara