Range Gas Leak

Old 12-20-02, 07:28 AM
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Question Leaking gas range

Just bought the house with a leaking natural gas kitchen range (gas smell when the main valve behind the range is open). Temporarily I just didn't use it.

Hardwick brand, the used range connected with the looking new pipes (flexible and main).

Is it legal to fix it myself or whom I should call and how much it will cost in general?

Also, what can be used to seal threads (to make them not-leaking): a grease or else? Where can it be bought (I didn't found gas department in Canadian Home Depot)?

One more question: the main valve is low behind the range, it is very difficult to turn it on and off each time when using the range. Is it normal or I should add the piece of pipe with additional valve on it placed higher, behind and above the range?

Old 12-20-02, 06:53 PM
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Hello Brett0987 and Welcome to our Do It Yourself Web Site and my Gas Appliances forum.

Older stoves and ranges have pilot lights. Be sure all are lit before assuming there is a leak. If you recently installed the appliance, the most likely locations for leaks are where the installed parts and or connections where made.

Connector threads must fit together correctly. They connector nut on both ends of the connector should be hand threaded first, before using any wrenches. Use only oil to seal the threads. Do not use pipe tape or any other compounds on the threads of connectors, etc.

Leaks at most connections can be easily corrected. If not, the threads could be damaged or the parts are not compatible. Any doubts as to the condition of the parts used to connect the appliance should be replaced with new parts.

Best leak detection method is to use "Leak Detection Soap." Mix per instructions. Not having that, a soapy water solution made from commonly used dish soap will do fine. A slightly thick mixture to insure the soapy water remains on the parts and will still allow bubbles to form. A small cupful will do fine for the purpose.

Do not turn off the gas. Apply the soapy water solution using a sponge or common paint brush. Cover every connection location part and point. Especially connection locations you made and some locations which may have been unintentionally disrupted, etc. Then wait and watch.

Wherever a leak happens to be, regardless of how tiny, bubbles will form. Note every leak spots. Allow several minutes, if needed, for additional bubbles to appear.

Tiny leaks create tiny bubbles which may take time to develope. A second application may be required to locate some very tiny leaks.

Turn off the gas, at the gas valve on the supply pipe and make the needed repairs. Then retest the results. Repeat this process until all leaks are located and corrected.

If you need further assistance, use the REPLY button. By doing so, the additional information you add or questions you may have, will remain within this posting. Using this method also moves the topic back up to the top of the list automatically.

I would suggest you leave the shut off on the supply pipe as is. Once the leak is fixed, there will not be the need to access the valve often. Supply gas volume may be too much to deal with. Best to hire a pro for this type of task.

Regards & Good Luck. Gas Appliances Forum Moderator
Tom_Bart........"Fast, Fair, Friendly & Highly Proficient"......
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Old 12-21-02, 06:40 PM
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What kind of oil to use?

Thank you for the response, Tom! What kind of oil to use for sealing threads at any leaking connections: thick like motor or mineral oil, or thin like sewing machine oil?

I saw at Home Depot white pipe joint compound with teflon, described as non-hardening paste, withstands up to 3,000 PSI on gases, to use on natural and LP gas lines. Is this kind usable for sealing leaks inside the gas range or on the pipes only?

And if the main valve normally should be in opened position, should pilot lights be lit permanently? Is their function to light the gas at the burner, instead of a matchstick? I previously used the burner and matches system only, without pilot lights.

Thanks again,
Old 12-21-02, 08:18 PM
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Hello: Brett0987

Any type of light weight oil will do fine. I often attempt to avoid brand names, so I simply state oil. I should have clearified that. The brand has a number 1 and a number 3 in it...haha..

The oil is to be used only on the connector hex nut threads. The female adaptor ends and all pipe to pipe connections, use pipe compound with or without teflon. Does not matter if teflon is in the compound or not for the intended usage.

If you prefer not to spend the $ for any compound, use the oil {with the #'s in the name} on ALL fittings and threads.

Parts that are correctly fitting together, match each other, not damaged and installed correctly, oil as a lube will do fine. No sealant or compound of any type is needed or required.

I have done hundreds of connections, repairs and fixed thousands of gas leaks on all types of gas appliances without anything but oil used in the manner as described.

Never once had to make a return trip to fix the problem again, as a result of using oil on any connections regardless of the type or materials connected. It's all in the knowledge, experience, skill and technique.

Oil works. And we can't leave home without it. But that's another topic......LOL...

All pilots must remain on at all times. Ranges and or cooking stoves have several pilots. Some as many as one per burner while other burners can share one pilot.

One pilot may light two top burners. Ovens and broilers often have individual pilots. Regardless, all pilots must remain on or a gas odor will be present. Pilot gas odors are not a hazard but should be lite when found to be extinguished.

Good Luck, Forum Host & Moderator.
Old 12-22-02, 04:40 PM
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Thumbs up Thanks!

Thanks for full explanations, Tom!
I still have one more question, in the new thread.


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