Sections 3 & 4 – Gas Supplies & Siting and Gas Installation Pipework

…Code of Practice 24 – Part 3 ( UKLPG CoP 24 Part 3)

Gas Supplies & Siting (Section 3)

Like much of the Code of Practice if you were to sit down and plan how things should be done to be safest / least risk this is probably a list most of us could come up with. However, having seen some of the mistakes people have made in recent times, everyone should spend time reading through this section of the CoP in detail – common sense isn’t always so common!

This section covers how cylinders which are not in use shall be stored – capped or plugged and only the required number for the maximum projected usage to be kept at the unit.

The in-use cylinders shall be installed upright with valves uppermost and located

  • In the open air
  • On a firm, level hard standing
  • Fixed to a post or in a suitably designed cylinder stand
  • Where they are readily accessible
  • Not obstructing access or emergency exits
  • Where they are reasonably protected against accidental or vehicular damage
  • In a designated, and signed, no smoking area

When storing between 15Kg & 400Kg there shall be a separation distance of 1m between buildings, boundaries and fixed sources of ignition. Above 400Kg this increases to 3m.

If circumstances mean that it is not reasonably practicable to provide installation pipework from an external cylinder supply then an internal supply may be permissible provided that suitable and sufficient risk assessment is carried out.

And they shall not be located

  • Below ground level
  • Less than 1m (horizontally) or less than 0.3m (vertically above the cylinder) from
    • fixed sources of ignition, unprotected electrical equipment, excessive heat sources, readily ignitable materials
    • apertures in the unit such as doors, openable windows, flue / chimney terminals etc
  • Closer than 2m (horizontally) from untrapped drains, unsealed gullies or openings to cellars
  • Next to corrosive, toxic or oxidising materials

Gas Installation Pipework (Section 4)

Pressure drop – the pipe size shall ensure that the pressure drop between the outlet of the pressure regulator and any appliance inlet when the installation is subjected to maximum load shall not exceed 2mbar.

Flexible hoses – for cookers and ovens should be as short as practicable but in no case exceed 1.5m in length. They must also be made from one of the specified types listed in the CoP.

Pressure drop – simple explanation…

If your pipe sizing is not of a large enough bore size, and your equipment requires a lot of gas to run it !!!
Then when in use…. the gas cannot get through the pipe quick enough… this will cause the pressure in the pipe to drop, which is measurable, 2millibar is the maximum permissible drop before your complete pipe work will need to be resized.

There are two ways to combat pressure drop

  1. remove and resize the pipework bigger
  2. reduce the kilowatt loading of your appliances

Please note: Throughout this series of articles we have used the word ‘shall’ in all circumstances rather than swapping between should and shall. The difference is important and the CoP specifies which are mandatory and which are not – your LPG certified Gas Engineer can help you to understand where there is any scope. By using ‘shall’ in all circumstances here we are reducing the impact of any misinterpretation caused by our paraphrasing of the code of practice.