Natural Gas Line Maintenance Home Owners Responsibility


Whoever built your home was responsible for connecting the natural gas meter in the alley via a rigid pipe to your home which in turn connects to oven, hot water heater, furnace etc. According to our natural gas provider, New Mexico Gas Company, “the maintenance of the gas line between our meter and your home or building is your responsibility”.

This certainly seems fair enough since home builder and/or subcontractors dug the two foot deep trenches and installed the rigid metal pipe which supplies inexpensive natural gas to your domicile. This work done by home builder did have to pass city inspection as I recall. I did not feel exactly upbeat when I observed that the subcontractor seemed to be friends with the city inspector who presumably verifies that gas lines are up to safety specifications.

You can read the underlined text in the notice we received from New Mexico Gas Company which declares that the installed pipe lines may NOT be protected from corrosion! Say What?! Now that is scary and quite unsettling given the rush to completion most home builders impose on their subcontractors. We have no idea if our pipes are corrosion proof or if the home builder was trying to cut costs. I know there are corrosion resistant alloys and linings. I guess we can call the home builder who hopefully kept accurate records on this potentially life threatening matter.

The above ground portion of our gas line is a rusty L joint which connects to our house and is still splattered with Stucco apparently because subcontractor was in a big hurry to move on to the next job!

Anyway, since homeowner is responsible for said maintenance, he must pay for periodic inspection of gas pipes soliciting either a licensed plumber or heating contractor. I am guessing this is one of the most neglected aspects of home maintenance and likely explains the occasional backyard explosion that one sees reported on the evening news.

Finally, we are more than happy with our Gas Company as our provider and appreciate them notifying us of our safety responsibility on this matter even though it is quite likely they did it to save themselves a lawsuit.

Maintaining natural gas line from meter to house is homeowner's responsibility
Maintaining natural gas line from meter to house is homeowner’s responsibility

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