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# Natural gas pressure

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Member Posts: 10
edited August 2022
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Yes. The amount of gas the meter measures is dependent on the density of the gas, higher pressure or lower temp will increase the density. I think some meters have some amount of temperature compensation.

The meter just measures volume.

This is why the regulator is sealed.

Appliances need a pressure supplied within that marked on their ratings plate. That can be accomplished by secondary line regulators if the building supply is too high a pressure.
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That's intresting, the regulators in BC Canada aren't sealed but the max pressure is 2.2psi on them anyhow.

And I guess 0.2 psi increase is negligible for the cost of gas?
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It depends. The error is the percentage that it is off from what the meter index is calibrated for. In the US where most systems are 7 in. WC., .2 psig is about 5 in. WC. so it would be off by 70% or so.
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Actually, my math is wrong on the percentage because you have to use absolute pressure, not gauge pressure when figuring the density at 2 different pressure.
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Not sure how you increase the pressure from the street to your meter but the answer is no it will not give you free gas. The only problem I see is if the meter can handle the pressure. If the gas company thought you would be getting free gas by increasing the pressure to the meter do you think they would be that stupid and lose money?
There use to be an argument that if you increase the pressure out of the meter into the house you were stealing gas. Having worked with gas companies over the years that is just the same BS.
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Our gas co guy said if you jack up the regulator much above 4 ounces then there is a multiplier applied to your meter reading......but I want to investigate that more.

If I had 80 PSI water pressure and the neighbor had only 50 of water pressure.
We have the same water meters and it would record only the actual gallons, I just fill my tub faster.

But water is a solid liquid and NG is a gas vapor so would this make a difference?
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JUGHNE said:

But water is a solid liquid and NG is a gas vapor so would this make a difference?

Yes.

Gas is compressible, its density changes significantly with pressure. Water is more or less non compressible, if you increase the pressure the density stays more or less the same.
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It is the density of the gas leaving the meter not entering and that doesn't change. Higher gas pressure in gas line lowers amount of leakage.
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The meter measures volume. It is a pair of bellows and a bell crank that alternately fill and empty that turn the index. If a given volume of gas contains more mass then the meter will count less for a given mass of gas.
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It is the same reason that you can move a whole lot more btu/hr through a given pipe at 2 psig than you can at 6" wc.
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mattmia2 said:

It is the same reason that you can move a whole lot more btu/hr through a given pipe at 2 psig than you can at 6" wc.

Kind of sort of both. The higher pressure gas does carry a bit more BTU's. The main reason is that a 2# system can be designed for a full 1# of pressure drop, where a 7" wc system can only tolerate 0.5" wc drop, thus the need for larger pipes.

This post explains how to calc the BTU difference by pressure at any altitude. https://forum.heatinghelp.com/discussion/180758/wallet-cards-for-clocking-gas-meters#latest
"If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough"
Albert Einstein
• Member Posts: 10
edited August 2022
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• Member Posts: 10
edited August 2022
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If you were able to raise the gas pressure before the gas meter then the amount of gas moved through that meter would be greater and yes you would be getting some amount of free gas. In order to increase the gas pressure before the meter, you would have to go to the gas pressure regulators for that area which are normally in a "locked " containment area, break the lock, and adjust the pressure to that whole area. Now, you just broke many laws, "breaking and entering" and "unlawful taking", just to name two. There are other problems such as what is the maximum gas pressure a gas regulator can handle and will the increased gas pressure "lock-up" the next regulator not allowing gas to flow.

I dwelt with all the gas companies all over Pa. over the years and they are all used to seeing the "tricks" people have used to steal their gas. It is not worth the fines in \$, or jail time. Increasing the gas pressure to your home could save you pennies but the actual cost to you could be exorbitant through loss of life, los of property, or your loss of your freedom. My 2 cents.
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mattmia2 said:

The meter measures volume. It is a pair of bellows and a bell crank that alternately fill and empty that turn the index. If a given volume of gas contains more mass then the meter will count less for a given mass of gas.

That is correct..
And it is a federal offence to pamper/Adjust the gaspressure..
In our part of the country only the gas company is allowed to adjust the pressure.
Not sure if the gasmeter has another internal adjustment that compensates for higher pressure which is then negotiated by the gas company ?
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mattmia2 said:

The meter measures volume. It is a pair of bellows and a bell crank that alternately fill and empty that turn the index. If a given volume of gas contains more mass then the meter will count less for a given mass of gas.

That is correct..
And it is a federal offence to pamper/Adjust the gaspressure..
In our part of the country only the gas company is allowed to adjust the pressure.
Not sure if the gasmeter has another internal adjustment that compensates for higher pressure which is then negotiated by the gas company ?
I think they use an index with different gearing to match the pressure.
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Thank you guys for all the responses! I appreciate y'all enlightening (hehe) with wisdom as you have more experience with utilities.

Sorry if I come off sounding like I want to steal gas, I just wanna win against my friend!

So I guess that answer is...

Increasing the pressure before the meter will allow slightly more gas to flow without being registered assuming the meter does not have it's own pressure compensation.

And the amount of gas you do get will not be enough to cover the lawyer fees/fines or the funeral bill.

On another note it appears the gas system in Canada is quite different from the US.
Here is a picture of our setup. With the regulator beside the meter. The white meter on the right is the proposed smart meter.

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Harman009 said:
Thank you guys for all the responses! I appreciate y'all enlightening (hehe) with wisdom as you have more experience with utilities.

Sorry if I come off sounding like I want to steal gas, I just wanna win against my friend!

So I guess that answer is...

Increasing the pressure before the meter will allow slightly more gas to flow without being registered assuming the meter does not have it's own pressure compensation.

And the amount of gas you do get will not be enough to cover the lawyer fees/fines or the funeral bill.

On another note it appears the gas system in Canada is quite different from the US.
Here is a picture of our setup. With the regulator beside the meter. The white meter on the right is the proposed smart meter.

That's exactly what everyone has in my area in the U.S.

It depends on the area.  Many areas are running high pressure in the road now in the U.S.  Some aren't.
Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
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In my neighborhood the mains are from 1949 and most of the system is still cast iron and steel so they are only running about 2 psig in the street to reduce loss.

The formula for how much more gas you get through the meter is Boyle's law p1/p2=v2/v1

Where p1 and p2 are the 2 absolute pressure you are comparing(you have to add atmospheric pressure to the gauge pressure) and v1 and v2 are the volumes in whatever unit you want as long as they are the same.
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We have the old school meters as shown on the left.
But the dial head has the WIFI module added between existing read out dials and existing meters.