Converting Step Three: Digging Down

The final step in turning on our new gas line was actually getting the gas run up to the house. Once we ordered our new furnace we probably had about four to six weeks between steps One and Two.

Working with our local utility company it took us four months to get our gas line run. I mean really? So skip summer and enter fall… We were hoping to have everything installed and running before winter hit. Finally the gas line crew showed up at the end of September, and Adam discussed and approved a specific plan for installing our new gas line.

We had the bottom of our driveway repaved at the beginning of the summer and we were keen to have it not completely torn up, like this:

jen darling

Either Adam’s plan was completely ignored or for some reason it just wasn’t going to work. They decided to dig a nice big hole in the corner of our driveway.

Notice anything about that photo though? There’s no gas line. Enter problem number 2: the gas company and the contractors were having trouble communicating the exact location of the pipe.jen darling

Lots more digging and few days later they found the pipe. And then had more digging.

jen darling

To get the line run up to the house, the crew painted a guide up the lawn and then used a machine to push the pipe down. Once the pipe was in and connected to the house, they could connect it to the main gas line under the street.

Sadly I don’t have any photos of this step, as it happened while I was gone on a trip and Adam was at work.

Somehow in the process of connecting these two pipes there was asbestos involved, so rumor has it guys in hazmat suits showed up to get that part done. The line was finally run, and the gas line company sent out someone to install the meter.

oh jen darling

Isn’t our thermostat cool? Sila sent a technician back to calibrate the system and make sure everything was running properly. Finally by mid-October we had heat!

We didn’t get charged for gas for a good three weeks until the gas company came and set the meter. I think it took about 12 trips between Sila, PECO and the gas line installation crew for everything to get hooked up and running. Seriously, not a lot of communication or coordination going on.

We’ve had the gas heat for a few months now and I think we’re both very happy with how consistently comfortable the house is, even at a lower temperature. Being able to change the temperature from the app on my phone is a bonus, and we’ve already saved a ton of money over last year.

There are two steps left in increasing the efficiency and comfort of our house: upgrading all the windows to new ones (we’re pretty sure some of them are original 1948 babies) and putting in new insulation in the attic. The insulation is of the list for this year, the windows will go as we renovate each room.

Overall I would say it seemed like quite the daunting task to convert from oil to gas. Ultimately it could have been done in a more efficient manner, but it wasn’t a scary process at all. It just took FOREVER. Now I’m happy to be toasty inside with or without Daphne and Sherlock snuggling.

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