If you’re building a new home, you may be considering using gas to power your stove, hot water system or more. But what are your options when it comes to gas in Queensland? In this article, we’ll be taking a closer look at how to set up a gas connection to your home, the options available and the price you can expect to pay.
What are the different types of gas I can choose?
In Queensland, you have two types of gas to choose from. These are natural gas and Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG). Each of these options has its pros and cons which we will go into more detail now.
Natural gas is mined from deep in the earth and contains ethane, propane, and butane. Homes that have natural gas have it delivered through a pipeline rather than gas bottles. Natural gas is available in areas of Brisbane and the Gold Coast, but not everywhere. It is much more common in southern states like Victoria and New South Wales.
- There is a much lower risk of running out due to constant supply
- Often works out to be cheaper in the long run than LPG
- Ideal for homes or businesses with high gas needs (for example, if your home has multiple appliances running on gas).
- Lighter than air, making it easier to disperse should there be a leak.
- More expensive to install due to more installation requirements, such as piping.
- Non-renewable gas.
- You can’t move appliances once gas pipes and connections are installed.
- Highly combustible and toxic. You need to take great care when storing natural gas.
Liquid Petroluem Gas (LPG)
LPG is a mixture of propane and butane. If you’ve ever seen gas tanks outside someone’s house, chances are this is LPG. In Queensland, this is a more common gas source than natural gas.
- Much more readily available than natural gas
- Portable and easily accessible
- A clean burning option
- Replacement for smaller bottles available at service stations.
- Tanks require storage space.
- You need to be somewhat organised to avoid running out of gas and needing an emergency replacement.
- As a heavier gas, you’ll need to open doors and windows if there is a leak.
How to connect gas to my new home?
Connecting gas isn’t as simple as flicking a switch and you must take a few steps to organise your new connections. Below is a step-by-step guide as to how to approach the gas connection process.
Step 1: Determine the type of gas you want to be connected
The first thing you’ll need to determine what options are available in your area. If you have both natural gas and LPG available to you, you’ll need to determine which option best suits your needs and budget.
Type of gas installation you’ll need to arrange
Depending on where you live and your situation, you’ll have a few options when it comes to gas connection installation. These include:
- Mains construction: If there are no existing lines to the street.
- Service line installation: For when there isn’t an existing service line on the property
- Meter only installation: When everything else is already there and you need to set up your own gas connection.
Step 2: Check if gas is available in your area
One of the first things you’ll need to do is check if gas is available in the area you’re looking to build. Obviously, if it isn’t, that’s it for gas installations. If it is, check if there are any regulations specific to your local council. In regional areas, options may be more limited, especially when it comes to natural gas.
Step 3: Talk to your builder about getting connected to gas
Talk to your builder for advice about connecting gas, including the best placement for appliances, gas tanks, gas connections and any other useful information. It’s also worth talking to them about the gas meter position. They’ll also be able to help you with a new connection request and can even recommend a gas retailer if you don’t already have one in mind.
Step 4: Get quotes from preferred gas providers
Once you’ve narrowed down your list of potential providers, get a quote from each energy retailer and compare what they’re offering. This provides you with an insight into the market and allows you options when choosing the best energy plan for you.
Step 5: Arrange gas meter installation
Once you’ve organised a provider, you’ll need to arrange to have a gas meter installed on your property. This can be done by your provider, who will help you find a reputable contractor to install the gas meter. You’ll need to schedule a date for the installation, and you’ll need to be present while this happens. Discuss what a suitable location might be for your meter. Your gas meter needs to be installed before you have your gas service pipe laid.
Step 6: Ensure you have obtained the required permits
For any building project, it’s important that all parts of your project meet regulations and that you have all necessary permits. Be sure that everyone you hire is qualified to perform the tasks they’re being hired to do. You’ll also need to lodge a gas connection request with your provider or have your builder do this for you.
Step 7: Arrange a gas inspection and approval
Have a licensed gas fitter perform an inspection of your gas connection, new meter installation and everything else to do with your gas connection. This ensures everything is up to code and also safe.
It’s also recommended you have your gas setup checked at least every two years, or whenever you notice any issues.
Step 8: Activate gas connection to new home
Activation needs to be done by your gas provider and is usually done on business days. Once you have your utilities and piping organised, you need to put in an energy connection request to get your gas up and running.
Step 9: Talk to builders about having gas appliances installed
Most gas appliances are designed for either natural gas or LPG, so talk to your builder about installing the appropriate appliances for your gas type. For example, if you have a natural gas connection be sure to purchase natural gas appliances.
How much does it cost to have gas connected to my new home?
The total cost to install gas will be around $1200-$5000. This covers labour, call-out fees, connections, gas service line installation, adjustments based on site conditions and weather conditions.
Are there any gas safety regulations I need to be aware of?
Any gas installation or maintenance needs to be done by a qualified professional. Doing it yourself runs the risk of inefficiency or worse, putting your family in danger. Make sure whoever is installing or working on your gas connection has the proper qualifications for the job.
Regulations for LPG Installation
- Gas bottle must be upright and stable
- Ensure bottle is fixed in position
- Gas bottle needs to be installed in a well ventilated area.
- Don’t install gas bottle near a window or entrance to home
- Install away from drains