Gas is much cheaper than electricity in South Africa. Gas appliances are more energy efficient, and they are more environmentally friendly than electrical appliances. Stringent safety and compliance regulations have also added the popularity of domestic and commercial gas appliance use. These same benefits are now powering a new development in South Africa’s domestic gas supply industry and Gas appliance conversion.

What Gas is available in South Africa for domestic use?

Most current gas appliances in South Africa use LPG (Liquified Petroleum Gas).

The alternative is natural gas, which is mixture of propane, methane and other gasses. This is supplied for both domestic and light commercial use through piped installations. This requires gas appliance conversion to make the switch.

Currently in South Africa, there is limited (though growing) supply of Natural Gas through piped infrastructure. You’ll only find it in cities – in urban, commercial and industrial areas. However, Johannesburg has the most extensive Natural Gas infrastructure, and so conversion to Natural Gas is becoming an option in most areas of JHB.

So which gas is better for your home / commercial use? Should you convert from LP Gas to Natural Gas, if you can?

Natural Gas vs LP Gas:

There are some enticing advantages to converting to Natural Gas:

  • Natural Gas burns more cleanly. LP Gas already emits around 50% less carbon dioxide than electricity, but Natural Gas offers you the option of going even greener – with almost no C02 emissions.
  • Natural Gas tastes – of nothing! Used for gas braais, Natural Gas won’t emit that all-too familiar LP ‘propane smell’ that can taint the taste of your food.
  • Piped Natural Gas ensures a constant gas supply. No more running off to find the garage out of stock in the middle of trying to cook Sunday Lunch.

Gas Appliance Conversion Safety:
Gas appliances are designed to work with one or the other type of gas. Besides the fittings, there is a difference in the way the inner workings are set to gas supply pressure.

Appliances need external and internal pressure-related modifications for conversion to Natural Gas (or other way, back to LP Gas). Not all appliances can be converted, and the conversion of gas appliances is subject to strict safety and compliance regulations, as it can be dangerous. Do it, if you can, but don’t try do it yourself!