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Thread: how to protect buried black pipe

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member whoru9999's Avatar
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    Default how to protect buried black pipe

    I have very little experience with gas line piping. I just had a Yellow PE gas line ran to my pool heater by a pool contractor. It terminates near the pool heater with what appears to be a compression fitting that is connected in turn a black steel elbow and a short run of black steel pipe. The compression fitting and elbow are buried undergroung (wrapped in protective tape) and the pipe comes up out of the ground to my heater through a valve.

    I would like to extend the run by about 48 inches because I have to move my heater. I would like to remove the elbow, and use a black steel pipe length. I have the protective tape (American Presto Pipe Wrap Tape), and plan on wrapping the pipe and fittings, then coating the whole thing with roofing tar. Should this provide enough protection to last for quite a while?

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    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    If he were a "legitimate" contractor, he would have used a "transition riser" rather than black pipe. IF I were going to bury a steel gas pipe, I would use galvanized pipe, but still wrap it. The only black pipe allowed to be buried is the type with an epoxy coating, but even that is only slightly better than plain black pipe.

  3. #3
    DIY Junior Member billyloon's Avatar
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    Default ok

    You should be ok for such a short run. Good call on the roofing tar over the tape (make sure you prime it before you use the tape wrap). From about 1930-1960s they used to use coal tar coating on all underground carbon steel natural gas transmission lines. They use a better coating now that is factory-applied, but I have seen some of these old coal tar lines hold up very well. My company still has thousands of miles of the coal tar lines running across the USA.

  4. #4
    Journeyman & Gas Fitter Doherty Plumbing's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by whoru9999 View Post
    I have very little experience with gas line piping. I just had a Yellow PE gas line ran to my pool heater by a pool contractor. It terminates near the pool heater with what appears to be a compression fitting that is connected in turn a black steel elbow and a short run of black steel pipe. The compression fitting and elbow are buried undergroung (wrapped in protective tape) and the pipe comes up out of the ground to my heater through a valve.

    I would like to extend the run by about 48 inches because I have to move my heater. I would like to remove the elbow, and use a black steel pipe length. I have the protective tape (American Presto Pipe Wrap Tape), and plan on wrapping the pipe and fittings, then coating the whole thing with roofing tar. Should this provide enough protection to last for quite a while?
    Unfortunately tape will not prevent that black steel in the ground from rusting.......

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