Author Topic: Natural Gas  (Read 1358 times)

Offline flbrewer

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Natural Gas
« on: February 04, 2016, 10:49:33 PM »
I'm considering switching to nat. gas as we have it at the house but haven't thought to use it for brewing.

I've heard it's way cheaper (not sure what it would cost to get a plumber to hook up a QD). Perhaps I can do this myself.

Anyone made the switch? Any noticeable difference in getting your water up to temp?

Offline Pinski

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Re: Natural Gas
« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2016, 10:54:56 PM »
I'm considering switching to nat. gas as we have it at the house but haven't thought to use it for brewing.

I've heard it's way cheaper (not sure what it would cost to get a plumber to hook up a QD). Perhaps I can do this myself.

Anyone made the switch? Any noticeable difference in getting your water up to temp?

Do it! Have a plumber install a (lockable, so curious kids don't blow your house up) shut off valve and a QD for you. Water boils just as fast and it's wonderful to not have to worry/gamble with partially full propane tanks.
Steve Carper
Green Dragon Brew Crew
Clubs: Oregon Brew Crew & Strange Brew
BJCP Certified

Offline flbrewer

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Re: Natural Gas
« Reply #2 on: February 04, 2016, 11:00:48 PM »
I'm considering switching to nat. gas as we have it at the house but haven't thought to use it for brewing.

I've heard it's way cheaper (not sure what it would cost to get a plumber to hook up a QD). Perhaps I can do this myself.

Anyone made the switch? Any noticeable difference in getting your water up to temp?

Do it! Have a plumber install a (lockable, so curious kids don't blow your house up) shut off valve and a QD for you. Water boils just as fast and it's wonderful to not have to worry/gamble with partially full propane tanks.

Out of curiosity what type of line do you run from your valve to the burner? In my case, I think it would be at least a 10' run from the nearest possible valve to where I set my burner up.

Offline kramerog

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Re: Natural Gas
« Reply #3 on: February 04, 2016, 11:06:20 PM »
If the burner puts out the same BTUs then should be just as fast. The propane burner will have to be replaced with a natural gas burner or the orifices drilled out to the appropriate size. The flowrate of natural gas at the same BTUs is quite a bit higher than propane so you may need a wider hose. 

Offline flbrewer

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Re: Natural Gas
« Reply #4 on: February 04, 2016, 11:09:13 PM »
If the burner puts out the same BTUs then should be just as fast. The propane burner will have to be replaced with a natural gas burner or the orifices drilled out to the appropriate size. The flowrate of natural gas at the same BTUs is quite a bit higher than propane so you may need a wider hose.

I have the Blichmann, looks like they sell a small conversion piece. I will need a new run of hose though.

Offline tommymorris

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Natural Gas
« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2016, 12:35:35 AM »
Slightly off topic but Costco in my city fills propane tanks to a full 20 pounds (instead of 15# you get with exchanges). They charge by the gallon of propane and they have a max charge of $8 to fill a tank. That makes natural gas slightly less attractive in my opinion.

Offline wingnut

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Re: Natural Gas
« Reply #6 on: February 05, 2016, 03:58:43 AM »
1/2 inch is plenty.  good for two burners
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Offline Pinski

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Re: Natural Gas
« Reply #7 on: February 05, 2016, 04:07:15 PM »
I'm considering switching to nat. gas as we have it at the house but haven't thought to use it for brewing.

I've heard it's way cheaper (not sure what it would cost to get a plumber to hook up a QD). Perhaps I can do this myself.

Anyone made the switch? Any noticeable difference in getting your water up to temp?

Do it! Have a plumber install a (lockable, so curious kids don't blow your house up) shut off valve and a QD for you. Water boils just as fast and it's wonderful to not have to worry/gamble with partially full propane tanks.

Out of curiosity what type of line do you run from your valve to the burner? In my case, I think it would be at least a 10' run from the nearest possible valve to where I set my burner up.

I apologize, I don't know the technical term for the type of hose I have. But, it is ~15',flexible, 3/4", insulated, reinforced NG line for outdoor grills.  Check with a high end gas grill dealer and they should be able to point you toward the right product and folks that can get the plumbing set up safely for you.

Steve Carper
Green Dragon Brew Crew
Clubs: Oregon Brew Crew & Strange Brew
BJCP Certified

Offline Slowbrew

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Re: Natural Gas
« Reply #8 on: February 05, 2016, 06:59:19 PM »
In my experience the gas line that comes on a Weber natural Gas grill is too narrow to go much over the 5' or so they supply with it.  I replaced an old grill and salvaged the hose and QD ends so I could grill in January/February without going too far outside my patio door.   ;D  It works but my flame height is substantially lower with both hoses connected.

I know the extra couplers make a difference too but generally with Natural gas you want as big a pipe as possible as close to the unit as you can get to maintain adequate gas flow.  In Iowa on residential work that is usually a 1" black steel pipe.  To the grill that gets reduces to 1/2".

You really need to check with a plumber or gas supplier to make sure you get a satisfactory flow to your burners.

Paul
Where the heck are we going?  And what's with this hand basket?

Offline Pinski

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Re: Natural Gas
« Reply #9 on: February 05, 2016, 07:44:19 PM »
I'm considering switching to nat. gas as we have it at the house but haven't thought to use it for brewing.

I've heard it's way cheaper (not sure what it would cost to get a plumber to hook up a QD). Perhaps I can do this myself.

Anyone made the switch? Any noticeable difference in getting your water up to temp?

Do it! Have a plumber install a (lockable, so curious kids don't blow your house up) shut off valve and a QD for you. Water boils just as fast and it's wonderful to not have to worry/gamble with partially full propane tanks.

Out of curiosity what type of line do you run from your valve to the burner? In my case, I think it would be at least a 10' run from the nearest possible valve to where I set my burner up.

I apologize, I don't know the technical term for the type of hose I have. But, it is ~15',flexible, 3/4", insulated, reinforced NG line for outdoor grills.  Check with a high end gas grill dealer and they should be able to point you toward the right product and folks that can get the plumbing set up safely for you.

Should have said my 3/4" line supplies NG to three wok burners. I can easily run two at a time.
Steve Carper
Green Dragon Brew Crew
Clubs: Oregon Brew Crew & Strange Brew
BJCP Certified

Offline coolman26

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Re: Natural Gas
« Reply #10 on: February 06, 2016, 03:49:05 PM »
I run 2-20 tip jet burners.  I plumbed to my setup with 3/4" pipe, to a ball valve.  I bought a 10' piece of flex line that is 3/4" and had quick disconnects.  I plumed to the burners with hard pipe, 3/4".  They reduce to 1/2" at the jet burner.  NG doesn't put out the BTU the same as propane.  I never used propane, the thought of tanks going empty didn't appeal to me.  I love having NG and turning the valve.  I just control my flame with a gas ball valve.  I will say the flex gas line is pricey.   
Jeff B

Offline jjflash

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Re: Natural Gas
« Reply #11 on: February 06, 2016, 10:25:08 PM »
Switched to natural gas years ago.
Way better than dealing with propane tanks.
Using natural gas on my Blichmann Top Tier currently.
Was so happy with the switch I changed my big meat smoker to natural gas also.
Beer + BBQ = heaven
This is the hose I use and recommend it highly.
Quick disconnects are great.
I use the 1/2 inch hose.
https://tejassmokers.com/Replacement-Gas-Hose/68
---JJ---

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Offline jimmykx250

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Re: Natural Gas
« Reply #12 on: February 06, 2016, 10:32:03 PM »
I never thought to run natural gas for brewing. I ran the line from my crawl space to my garage to the forced air furnace (which i love in the winter) but never thought of a natural gas burner. I wonder if it would be cheaper as i just filled my propane tank for 8 bucks.
Jimmykx250

Offline flbrewer

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Re: Natural Gas
« Reply #13 on: February 07, 2016, 01:21:47 PM »
I know the Blichmann burner has a simple orifice you swap out to run natural gas.

Offline drumminguy81

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Re: Natural Gas
« Reply #14 on: May 12, 2016, 06:37:56 PM »
I switched to natural gas last year and it was one of the best things I have done. Never worry about running out of propane and the cost is penny's on the dollar. I used to fill tanks every few brews now my gas bill went up maybe a couple bucks a month. I was lucky and already had a gas line stubbed out in my garage just bought a line and the orifices for my burners.

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