What is this on the gas line going to furnace?

All the years I was in heating and cooling and all the homes I inspected, I have never seen this before. A 9 unit building with all new furnaces and all but one gas line going to furnace had this installed. Can anyone tell me what it is?

Picture is not the greatest. It’s black plastic with nothing going to it. You can slide it up and down the gas pipe and the two sides are held on by screws. It does have some weight to it.


Here are two more pictures.







It freely moves up and down a pipe but not large enough to slide over a gas shut off valve or a coupling if one was installed.

What’s the name on the side?

It looks like a safety clamp that can be used to clamp around the shut off valve in the gas line to prevent the valve from being closed or opened. We use to use red ones like that in my past life. I would have popped those screws out and had a look curiosity will kill the cat but satisfaction will bring it back.

Hmmmmm. It appears to have a wire coming out of the first picture.

I would have removed the 4 screws. Now you’ve got me curious.

How odd as my first thought was magnets also.
Anyone notice how the coupling in the first picture appears to be galvanized?
(dis-similar to the black pipe)


Besides the screws, the rest of it is black plastic.

David could not see any wire in the pic maybe my eyes are to old.

Will stay with my first thought a lock out device he did say this was a multiple unit and I was thinking rentals God only knows I don’t.:roll: :smiley:

Kevin I was refering to the gas pipe coupling.It looks like it is galvinized though it may be the pic.

Could it be a bonding clamp of sorts? I noticed the wire also.

Is it a protective cover which slips over the gas valve to prevent damage and/or someone inadvertently turning the valve off, such as children? Perhaps that is why its plastic, and slides. I think Charley is right.

Maybe it is an electronic device to keep up with how much gas each unit uses.

With the suggestions, I’ll have to go with preventing the tenants from turning off the shut off valves. I would think there was a better system then just 4 screws.

What would happen in an emergency? I don’t believe that’s the purpose, but now you have to find out for us Kevin. :wink:

Kenneth thats why the cover slides?

Good point.

No, the covers did not slide over the gas shut off valve. They all just rested on them.

I never thought of the gas shut off valve to a furnace or any other appliances (such as to a water heater, stove or a gas dryer) as an emergency valve. I always thought of them like a switch to the furnace. You turn it off so a tech can properly work on unit safely.

The maintenance person that let me into each unit just started no long after the furnaces were installed.

Kevin the ones that I am use to do not have screws but do have a hole in the side to place a pad lock. My thinking was if tenants were involved might be a way to secure the gas to the furnace in the off position if someone was not paying their bills. I have never seen one either with just screws does not make sense to me. Some say there is a wire in your pic I could not see it; if there is a wire it would change the thought pattern. Darn it go find out we all need to know.