Jun 12, 2011, 8:43 PM
Post #4 of 17
As Pete says that's a scary proposition for sure. Usually a leak of that kind has been going on a while and underground or concrete cavities can hold a little gas that can be explosive. It goes without saying, be very, very careful. One safe way that you yourself can find the leak, is to drain your tank. Have your normal gas supplier do this as they are usually capable of transferring gas in both directions from and to their trucks and have the gas supplier give you credit for your gas. Get some red leak dye (plumbers dye) at some store such as a Home Depot or Lowes, etc. Introduce that dye to your tank (about a half a cup should do). Add compressed air to your tank to the max pressure the tank allows (depending upon the size of your tank) IT SHOULD BE LABLED “MAX PRESSURE”. Use a bypass at your regulator, so as not to damage the gas regulator with red dye and water. Turn on the pressure and look for any leaks to start showing a red substance. That will only give you an approximate starting point. Who ever does your digging, is going to have to be very careful not to cause any sparks, from any chisels hitting small pieces of concrete. One way to avoid this, is to wrap your chisel blade tip in a 3M Teflon scrubbing pad (the green kind) double or triple the thickness every few hits. Remember some small gas pockets can get trapped during the process, as gas is different from the air you will be using to blow the dye. Follow that red dye trail until you reach your problem area. Once you think you have found your problem area, then make a 25% dish detergent soap and 75% water mixture (a small amount should do the trick), and liberally coat the direct area around your gas pipe you think maybe the problem. You should start to see a bubbling effect.
I would give strong consideration to laying all new gas supply lines outside your home and through the wall to your outlets.
I wish you well.