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Getting Water Out of Gas Pipes


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Despite being careful I have managed to get water from the gas bottles into a gas line.  Have any readers got experience of blowing lines clear that they would care to share?

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How does that happen? I guess there must be water vapour getting past the regulator that builds up?

 

Could the pipes be sucked out with a wetvac or wouldn't that work against a vacuum inside the pipe?

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24 minutes ago, blackrose said:

How does that happen? I guess there must be water vapour getting past the regulator that builds up?

 

Could the pipes be sucked out with a wetvac or wouldn't that work against a vacuum inside the pipe?

Not sure how it happens, I asume its a sort of condensation where the gas carries a bit of humidity. Everybody is clear that you need to keep the HP lines draining down into the cylinder but my gas locker is a fraction too short and horizontal is the best I can do.  Its been ok for many years but now its caused a problem.

The info that came with the regulator states that gas lines should be blown back from the appliance where possible, but your wetvac suggestion may be worth attempting.

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LPG has a very high water content - when you burn a litre of LPG you actually get 950g of water.

 

I guess in the right conditions it is inevitable that some will condense out in the pipes.

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There is also a little bit of smelly stuff ("stenching agent") in the bottles. This can also condense in the pipes as an oily brown liquid, this has caused a blockage in ours on several occasions.

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1 minute ago, Keeping Up said:

There is also a little bit of smelly stuff ("stenching agent") in the bottles. This can also condense in the pipes as an oily brown liquid, this has caused a blockage in ours on several occasions.

Ethyl mercaptan, which is why you should not invert a gas bottle though the outlet does have a short dip tube. Its Horrible Smelly Stuff.

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3 hours ago, Keeping Up said:

There is also a little bit of smelly stuff ("stenching agent") in the bottles. This can also condense in the pipes as an oily brown liquid, this has caused a blockage in ours on several occasions.

How did you get yourself unblocked?

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Just now, Keeping Up said:

I took the pipe off completely, then upended it and just blew through it

Unfortunately mine is about 10M long with multiple right angles!

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Disconnect the furthest end of the pipe, and any tee junctions which go downward, from whatever they go to, at a convenient union. Get someone to hold a  loose ball of  rag at the open  ends of the pipes.

 

Disconnect the regulator end of the pipe  and insert the long plastic nozzle of a can of air duster (Screwfix and others sell it).  Seal round with some duct tape or a lump of  plasticine.  Discharge the air duster down the pipe till the water stops coming out the rag ends. You may want a second Tin to be sure, to be sure.

 

Expect to get some stenching agent as well as water.

If you have a compressor or a 12V tyre inflators you can use that instead of a can of air duster.

 

Sucking from one open end will not work.  Air has to be able to get in to replace the water you want out.

 

N

 

 

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1 hour ago, BEngo said:

Disconnect the furthest end of the pipe, and any tee junctions which go downward, from whatever they go to, at a convenient union. Get someone to hold a  loose ball of  rag at the open  ends of the pipes.

 

Disconnect the regulator end of the pipe  and insert the long plastic nozzle of a can of air duster (Screwfix and others sell it).  Seal round with some duct tape or a lump of  plasticine.  Discharge the air duster down the pipe till the water stops coming out the rag ends. You may want a second Tin to be sure, to be sure.

 

Expect to get some stenching agent as well as water.

If you have a compressor or a 12V tyre inflators you can use that instead of a can of air duster.

 

Sucking from one open end will not work.  Air has to be able to get in to replace the water you want out.

 

N

 

 

 

Or even a car spare tyre with the valve taken out. Bodge the connecting tube and make sure you can get it on and off the valve before removing the valve core.

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Or, as I have done in other circumstances, use a hair dryer or a fan heater (on cold setting) as a source of blown air. A plastic bag or bin-liner with the end cut off, plus a load of sticky tape, makes a perfectly good connecting tube, and you can leave it blowing air for several hours to evaporate any moisture.

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6 hours ago, BEngo said:

Disconnect the regulator end of the pipe  and insert the long plastic nozzle of a can of air duster (Screwfix and others sell it).  Seal round with some duct tape or a lump of  plasticine.  Discharge the air duster down the pipe till the water stops coming out the rag ends. You may want a second Tin to be sure, to be sure.

 

But do note that the "air" in air dusters is not, in fact, air, but a flammable hydrocarbon (probably propane or butane) so discharging large quantities of it in a boat may be a bad idea.

 

I recently discovered this when using an air duster to clean out the burner in the gas grill on the boat. I gave it a good blow-out, then lit it to see if the obstructions were cleared. The resulting fireball removed quite a lot of fore-arm hair, and rattled the doors at the opposite end of the cabin.

 

MP.

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20 hours ago, MoominPapa said:

But do note that the "air" in air dusters is not, in fact, air, but a flammable hydrocarbon (probably propane or butane) so discharging large quantities of it in a boat may be a bad idea.

 

I recently discovered this when using an air duster to clean out the burner in the gas grill on the boat. I gave it a good blow-out, then lit it to see if the obstructions were cleared. The resulting fireball removed quite a lot of fore-arm hair, and rattled the doors at the opposite end of the cabin.

 

MP.

The Screwfix/Toolstation product claims to be non flammable.

N

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The best way to shift moisture from pipes is vacuum. Not a vacuum cleaner but a vacuum pump. Block all outlets but one and vac it down overnight. If you don't have access to the vacuum pump, there's a thread further down called "canal boating sucks" you could try that.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I looked at the ingredients list in some "air dusters" and decided against using them.  I went for disconnecting the pipe at both ends, connecting a rubber tube to the appliance end, and connecting a new bicycle pump to that. Then I pumped hard for 10 minutes.  On reconnecting everything worked, and whats more, the Morco now starts first click which it has never in its ~8 year  history done before!

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A good weapon for this kind of thing is one of those little 12v air compressors for blowing up car tyres, one that plugs into a fag lighter socket. Apart from blowing up tyres they're very useful for blowing out things, gas lines, fuel lines, blowing crumbs of your keyboard. They usually come with a couple of different nozzles for blowing up air beds, dinghies, dolls ect.  Costs range form about £15.

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