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Water, Water, Everywhere, Not a drop of heat......
Got up a couple days ago and noticed the house was chilly. It was about 30 degrees outside. House was 60 degrees. Went to the basement to check the boiler and found the pilot was out. Tried to light it but nothing. Decided that the thermocouple had failed and installed a new one. Tried to relight the pilot and still nothing but this time I noticed I wasn't hearing any gas flow. Went to the kitchen range and turned it on. Nothing! I called the gas supplier and asked if they had any calls in the area. They said not one. I told them I did not have gas into my house and they said they'd sent a tech out. A couple guys arrived about 10 minutes later (Wow that's responsive!). They went to the basement, unscrewed the output side of the gas meter, nothing. They unscrewed the incoming side, nothing. They then told me the gas supply into the house is blocked (we had about 3" of rain the day before). They thought the gas line into the house was filled with water so they brought two huge tanks of compressed air in. Hooked them up to the gas line and blew it out. Success (or so they thought). They could tell from the sound that it blew clear (or so they thought). They put the gas meter back in, turned the valve on the output side back on, asked me to turn a range on. No gas flow. They order more compressed air (or whatever was in those tanks) and we wait for another truck to arrive. During that time, they take the gas meter off again and we wait. While we were waiting, a neighbor around the corner called and asked if I had gas??? I say no and they say they don't either. I hang up and told the techs my neighbor around the corner doesn't have gas either. While I am telling them that, a neighbor across the street called; Do you have gas? No, I say but I have the gas company here. I tell the techs my neighbor across the street doesn't have gas either. They reinstall the gas meter and tell me they have a bigger issue than they can fix from my house and they call into dispatch to find out they now have some 50 calls in the area. They tell me they will be back to let me know what they found. It turns out that the gas main that supplies our neighborhood was filled with water and they had to pump hundreds of gallons of water out of the main. They return to my house at 1:00AM to let me know the problem was fixed and what they found. I asked; How does that much water get into a gas main? They say "These mains are over a hundred years old and they have holes in them and they are working to line all the gas mains and service into each structure but that takes time. In the meantime if that much water can get in, how much gas can get out? Anyway, I go to the basement and light my boiler and we are good to go, as long as gas from those leaking mains doesn't find its way into my basement!