In certain installations CSST gas tubing must be properly protected.
CSST gas tubing, or Corrugated Stainless Steel Tubing, is a flexible tubing for the conveyance of gas from a manifold inside the house to the various appliance that require gas.
The manufacturer of the tubing, Gastite, Inc., has very specific requirements for installation.
Necessarily! You can't just slap up any product that could create a potential disaster inside a home.
Proper fittings, support, bending, protection - all of this and more - have very specific installation requirements, with explanations and diagrams.
YOU CAN'T JUST SLAP IT UP!
I suspect that at this house a rear patio, retaining wall, and built-in barbecue were built after the fact. In this particular county no permit is required for that. But when they added a CSST gas line to service the barbecue that DID require a permit.
So when I saw this it got my attention! Look at the photo to the left.
That bend is too tight. For 1" tubing the minimum bend radius is 5", according to the International Fuel Gas Code. There is a reason for that! They don't want it to split or break and leak!
The tubing here is damaged, and unprotected.
And with the photo to the right, burying it without using either a specially-made tube or without using a protective conduit is another no no.
From the Gastite installation guide (108 pages here) it says things like, "When installed along the outside of a structure (between the ground and a height of 6 ft) in an exposed condition, the FlashShield™ CSST shall be protected from mechanical damage inside a conduit or chase." and "When it is necessary to bury or embed FlashShield™ CSST, the tubing shall be routed inside a non-metallic, watertight conduit that has an inside diameter at least 1/2 inch larger than the O.D. of the tubing. For ends of the conduit installed outdoors, the conduit shall be sealed at any exposed end to prevent water from entering."
These are just two of the photos taken at this inspection of this installation. If it was inspected by the County and approved, it still is not correct. The IRC codes specify in virtually every instance that materials be installed to the specifications of the manufacturer.
But all I can do is observe, and report, and recommend that a "licensed specialist" look at and recommend corrections. A home inspector makes no demands.
My recommendation: I don't know everything in every instance. In this case I knew the installation was incorrect, but had to look up the specifics. Those specifics got included in my report. And there was more than what is in this post! But you get the idea. Hire a home inspector. Sometimes they go with their gut, but will be able to back up that tingling feeling later!
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC
Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.
Office (703) 330-6388 Cell (703) 585-7560