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Propane Pipe Burners: Uses and Design Considerations

By nohemitutterrow : A how to tutorial about propane pipe burners, stainless steel pipe burners, Business with step by step guide from nohemitutterrow.

One of the important tools you need at home is a pipe burner. It is made from different materials such as stainless steel, cast iron and aluminum which can withstand high temperatures. It can also be made with different sizes and capacity depending on its purpose and design. In making stainless steel pipe burners, holes are drilled on one side of the pipe to allow gas to escape.

A typical pipe burner is usually installed in the base of fireplaces and attached to the end of the gas feed pipe. It can also be used in vats, kettles, tanks and other containers that require burners underneath or heating by direct contact. Because of its various applications, pipe heaters have different design considerations.

Gas Supply

In order to operate at optimum level, the burner must be provided with fuel that has sufficient volume and operating pressure. Such fuel must be clean and can only be used depending on the type of burner. A general rule of thumb when it comes to this is that, a burner that operates on natural gas must not be used with propane and vice versa. Propane pipe burners operate at 11” water column (WC), while natural gas burners operate at 8” WC.

Air Supply

For safe and efficient combustion, all types of pipe burners normally require primary and secondary air supply. If a pipe burner lacks any one of these air supplies, the burner will not operate properly and may even cause your burner system to act erratically. The pipe burner’s primary air is the air drawn into the burner’s mixer located at the beginning of the pipe. The secondary air is the air drawn into the final combustion.

Head Space

This design consideration refers to the distance between the top of the burner and the bottom of the surface being heated. Such distance allows complete combustion, with visible and well defined flames. Insufficient head space can cause incomplete combustion that releases gas odor into the environment. A typical pipe burner should have a head space that measures twice the diameter of the burner.


Because pipe burners use heat, there must be proper ventilation in the system. Proper ventilation must have natural upward and outward flow and must be unobstructed. Combustion products must be collected and vented out of the area. Combustion products from propane pipe burners should not be inhaled, because it is highly toxic.

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