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Converting Gas Restaurant Equipment In 5 Simple Steps



Converting any piece of gas equipment from natural gas to propane or from propane to natural gas is fairly simple and can be accomplished in 5 easy steps.

Parts needed to convert the equipment:

  • Burner Orifices
  • Pilot Orifice
  • Regulator
  • Combination Safety Valve conversion kit
  • Nomenclature (tag on unit that has model and serial number on it).

ALWAYS REMEMBER TO TURN OFF ALL GAS TO THE UNIT!!

Converting Gas Restaurant Equipment In 5 Simple Steps

1.  Replacing burner orifices. First, the most important thing you need to know is the brand name, model and serial numbers of your unit.  Next thing you will need to know is what altitude the unit you are converting is at.  This will determine what orifice size you will need.  You will also need to know the number of top burners as well as any other burners such as oven burners and the number of oven pilots (if you are converting a range).  The conversion can be done one of two ways: either by using the manufacturer’s conversion kit or with individual parts.  The conversion kits can be more expensive than using individual parts.

The conversion can take some time because whatever piece of equipment you are converting has to be dismantled and then reassembled.  Begin by removing all the burners and then remove what is needed to be removed in order to access the burner valves.  The burner valves do not need to be removed.  Remove the old orifices and install the new orifices (orifices are screwed to the end of the valve).

2.  Replace pilot orifices. If you are converting an oven, you also need to change the pilot orifice.  The pilot tube is attached to the pilot with a nut.  Unscrew the nut and pull the tube out of the pilot assembly.  When the tube is pulled out, the orifice should fall out; if it does not, tap the pilot assembly.  Replace the pilot orifice and reassemble.  Reassemble the unit the same way you took it apart (you are almost done!)

Converting Gas Restaurant Equipment In 5 Simple Steps

3.  Replace the gas regulator. You must change the gas regulator usually found at the back of the equipment.  Remove the old regulator and install the new regulator, making sure that the gas flow direction is accurate.  The regulator has an arrow on the bottom of it and it must point toward the piece of equipment.

Reconnect the gas hose, turn on the gas and check all connections for leaks.  This can be done with soap bubbles – wipe soapy water onto the connections and look for places where it bubbles up, indicating a leak.  Light all your pilots (it may take a little time to purge out all the air).  Adjust the pilots to the correct flame height by turning the adjustment screw on the pilot valve.  Now turn on one burner at a time (you want a nice blue tip flame).  If there is yellow or orange in the flame you will need to adjust the air shutter on the burner to  correct the flame.   This goes for top burners as well as the oven burners.regulator, making sure that the gas flow direction is accurate.  The regulator has an arrow on the bottom of it and it must point toward the piece of equipment.

Converting Gas Restaurant Equipment In 5 Simple Steps4.  Converting combination safety valves. Some pieces of equipment have combination safety valves, most notably fryers.  There are conversion kits for them (there is no choice on this).  The kit contains a plate and gaskets.  There are instructions with each kit, and it is very simple to change.  Remove the old plate from the top of the safety valve and follow the instructions to install the new plate and gaskets.  The conversion is complete!

You can special order a conversion kit easily by calling 1-888-388-6372.

5.  Replace the unit’s nomenclature. By law, the nomenclature must also be replaced.  This is only available through the manufacturer of the piece of equipment being converted.  Sometimes it takes awhile to get them, so until you get the replacement, you should remove the word “natural” from the tag with a magic marker and write in large letters, “LP”.  When you receive the new tag, simply stick it over the old one.

You have now converted your equipment from natural gas to propane or vice versa.

Congratulations!

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7 Responses to Converting Gas Restaurant Equipment In 5 Simple Steps

  1. DANIEL February 11, 2012 at 5:30 pm #

    converted flat grill from gas to propane but not working properly

  2. Robert February 13, 2012 at 4:53 pm #

    Is there a company that will convertnatural gas appliances to LPG

  3. Manuel's Restaurant Equipment Service April 26, 2012 at 12:25 am #

    These days, most restaurants convert the gases that they use to natural gas. This is done to ensure that a healthier working environment is promoted. These tips that you have shared on how to do this safely so are really great. Thanks for sharing a very helpful article.

  4. Jeff July 16, 2012 at 3:58 pm #

    I have a henny penny ofg 321 has been converted to propane, wanting to use a small propane tank portable with this unit outsed occasionaly. hooked it up but will not light. I am thinking I do not have the correct regulator on the tank. manual says minimum 2.49kpa supply. what regulator should i buy.

    • Tundra July 17, 2012 at 12:10 pm #

      Hey Jeff,
      That is a fairly good size unit. It requires at least a 3/4″ gas hose to get the proper amount of gas. If you are trying to run it off of a small LP tank you may need to increase the tank size. You will have to run at least the 3/4″ gas hose with a 3/4″ LP regulator. The small gas line like used on a BBQ is not going to do the trick. You can use Tundra Number 41-118 hose with 41-457 regulator. But you will have to figure out a way to adapt the hose to the bottle. Your local propane company may be able to help in that respect. You have to have a minimum of 8 inches of water column in order to operate it. Your local propane company can probably chec that for you.

  5. Judith Magallon April 11, 2013 at 7:08 pm #

    Any suggestions about why my 13 yr old Maytag gas range hums loudly – seems to come from
    the area above the burners..

    • Molly Patterson April 15, 2013 at 6:24 am #

      Hi Judith,
      Have you noticed any flame issues? It could be the gas pressure or perhaps a loose burner or solenoid coil. I hope this helps!
      -Molly-

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