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  • City permit problems

    I am having trouble with the city permitting department in Texas. I am the first to install a FM4 at my home in my city. It is clear that the city has no prior experience with a home fueling station. I am wondering if anyone can tell me what is the best way to get this issue solved with the city inspector. I am looking for documentation that would help educate the city inspector. At this time they are telling me the unit has to be 10 feet away from my building which will not work for the length of hose that came with the unit. Thanks
    Last edited by kcasida; 11-09-2011, 01:34 PM.

  • #2
    Re: City permit problems

    The 10 foot thing is straight from the listing of the unit and the manufacturers install instructions. 10 feet from the property line , ten feet from an important building, that includes dwellings, but should not include detached garages. At minimum, the inspector is required to verify the unit is installed per the listing and mfg. instructions. If they deviate , they are saying they know more than the test lab and the manufacturer. I guarantee, no city or county building official will take on that risk.

    That being said, fuelmaker offers remote fill panels and hoses. Not cheap, but can be done.

    One of our members, freedml has one. Send him a p.m. and I'm sure he can tell you more.
    Last edited by Lakewood90712; 11-09-2011, 08:48 PM.

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    • #3
      Re: City permit problems

      NFPA 52 requires clearances of 10' from a building unless there is a 2 hour fire wall. (brick, block, poured or engineered) 10' from a street or sidewalk, 50' from a railway and not under power lines. Protection from impact is likely to be safety bollards and an electric cut off switchmust be located at lest 6' from and not more than 25' from the compressor.

      The Fuel Maker products are certified by the American Gas Association as appliances.
      There may be a dealer on here that has the FM4 specification sheet that you could use to assist with persuasion (I only have FMQ2 literature.)

      I don't know about your city but NFPA 52 only states that the fire marshal and gas utility be notified of the install. Your city may have ordinances but I personally think you stirred the can by talking to the building inspector - which should have been unnecessary. If permits need to be pulled it should only be the electric and gas line extensions that are pulled by the electrician and plumber.

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      • #4
        Re: City permit problems

        You're lucky. It's an industrial machine. Some members here have just been told 'no, you can't install that at a residence.' Install it where they tell you to and then buy/make a fill hose extension. It's a few extra bucks, but not that hard.
        02 GX
        01 GX
        03 Crown Vic
        06 GX
        Home Fueler

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        • #5
          Re: City permit problems

          Originally posted by Amfuel View Post
          NFPA 52 requires clearances of 10' from a building unless there is a 2 hour fire wall. (brick, block, poured or engineered) 10' from a street or sidewalk, 50' from a railway and not under power lines. Protection from impact is likely to be safety bollards and an electric cut off switchmust be located at lest 6' from and not more than 25' from the compressor.

          The Fuel Maker products are certified by the American Gas Association as appliances.
          There may be a dealer on here that has the FM4 specification sheet that you could use to assist with persuasion (I only have FMQ2 literature.)

          I don't know about your city but NFPA 52 only states that the fire marshal and gas utility be notified of the install. Your city may have ordinances but I personally think you stirred the can by talking to the building inspector - which should have been unnecessary. If permits need to be pulled it should only be the electric and gas line extensions that are pulled by the electrician and plumber.
          sorry for the misinformation, rather this correction will make any difference or not but the unit I have is a FM 2/36. I wish I would have known to go to the Fire Marshall and not to the city for a permit but was trying to do the right think. The local gas company wants to use my install for some promotions of CNG in my area. They have been very helpful and installed my gas line at no cost to me to help promote CNG.What direction would you suggest I take at this time. I really appreciate your reply and help. Maybe this will prevent someone else from making the same mistake I just made.

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          • #6
            Re: City permit problems

            It is good to know you have the gas company on your side. Express the development of the CNG market in Dallas and the central Texas triangle. (Dallas, Houston, San Antonio) Tell the city that the gas company wants to use this install as promotion for the industry.

            Maybe there is someone here that knows the regulations of the Texas Rail Road Commission. They are the regulator for the CNG industry in Tx.

            I lived in Temple for 12 years but that was long before the advent of alternate energies.

            Here is a specifications and benefits sheet on the VRAs. Since you have a Q2 it is a part of the current product line.

            VRA benefits sheet.pdf

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            • #7
              Re: City permit problems

              Got my FMQ2 up and running with a dedicated gas supply with two pounds of pressure. I was expecting it to be slow in filling my tank but with two pounds of pressure it really fills my tank to 3/4 in about six hours or so 21gal tank. I am really pleased to be able to fuel at home and save a ton of money doing it.

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              • #8
                Re: City permit problems

                I think 2 psi is out of spec for the FMQ if I remember right inlet pressure should be 6.7"-15" wc (1/4-1/2 psi). You don't want to blow your first stage.

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                • #9
                  Re: City permit problems

                  You are right Alaska. I disregarded the post because the Q2 would have an over pressure fault and shut down. The 2 psi is apparently regulated down inline somewhere.

                  Spec gas pressure is 7 inches to 14inches (water column)

                  The faster than spec filling is a puzzler as fill rate at low pressure is 1.16 gge/hr and drops to .9 gge/hr at high pressure.

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                  • #10
                    Re: City permit problems

                    If the op somehow hacked into and altered the FMQ software to get it to run like this, that FMQ is going to have a very short life. I dont think it could do over 2 gge per hour, even if modified.

                    So, Kcasida , tell us more of how you got the FMQ to do this .

                    Is the 21 gge a multi tank setup ? , and maybe one has a bad tank valve ? , making the capacity far less ? I have seen that many times. That would put the fmq performance about 1 gge per hour , in line with the unit standard performance.
                    Last edited by Lakewood90712; 12-23-2011, 05:24 AM.

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                    • #11
                      Re: City permit problems

                      My manual says that max inlet pressure for FMQ2 is 2psi. However, there is no error code or shut-down for high inlet pressure if it exceeds that.
                      02 GX
                      01 GX
                      03 Crown Vic
                      06 GX
                      Home Fueler

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                      • #12
                        Re: City permit problems

                        I have my FMQ hooked up to a 2 psi system and have a pressure regulator droping the inlet presure to 12"WC...do I dare to kick it up to 2 psi ?

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                        • #13
                          Re: City permit problems

                          I would start with 1psi and see if it makes a big difference in fill time/rate.
                          02 GX
                          01 GX
                          03 Crown Vic
                          06 GX
                          Home Fueler

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: City permit problems

                            I have not tweaked it any at all. The tank is a single tank. I will run my tank dry and do as accurate account of the time it takes to fill the system to 3/4 full. My system is a 3600lb system however the FMQ is only 3000lb so I know it will not fill it totally full. I am just very pleased with the way the system works and the dollars it is saving me.

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                            • #15
                              Re: City permit problems

                              I have been following this thread and am getting confused. First you thought you had a FM4 and now it is a FMQ that runs at 3000 PSI. I believe there is a 3000 psi FMQ 2.5 out there--is this what you have? I also thought the FM4 was never certified for use in the United States and I am not sure about the 2.5. In addition I think the higher inlet pressure (eight times what it should be) might limit the amount of gas that can be stored in the blowdown system to the point that the safety valve will vent. I know the FM8's and 10's were available with a 1 psi optional inlet pressure but they did not have a blowdown tank built in. Hopefully a Fuelmaker guru will chime in on this and set us all straight.

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