By municipal code, all gas lines have shut-offs located by the appliance that they are connected to. Of course, this makes sense. When I’m doing a kitchen remodel one of the first things that I do is to turn off these lines and then cap them. However, there are times when the valve is frozen and impossible to turn. This can be the case when I am remodeling a kitchen that hasn’t been updated in 20 years.

In this situation, it is necessary to close the main gas inlet valve to the house. Once this is turned off the kitchen appliances can be disconnected, and their local gas feed-lines can be capped. After they are secure the gas supply can be turned back on for the home’s other appliances, like the water heater and furnace.

There are other times when you may need to turn off your main gas supply. One situation would be after some sort of natural disaster, like an earthquake. However, if you smell gas in your home and you don’t know where it is coming from you should open doors and windows, leave the premises, and call 911. Every year there are stories on the news of homes exploding due to an internal gas leak.

Turning off the main gas supply is a simple process if you know how to do it. The photos below will teach you just that.

This kitchen is likely from the 1970s. It is slated to be completely remodeled.
After the cabinet’s doors and drawers are removed it is time to disconnect the home’s vintage appliances.
This arrow points to the local gas shut-off for the oven. When it is aligned with the pipe it is open (as in this case). When it is perpendicular to the pipe it is closed. Unfortunately, it remained in the open position for decades and is frozen and impossible to close. Therefore, I had to turn off the gas supply to the entire house.
This is the home’s gas meter. Gas meters are located outside of the residence. The arrow points to the main shutoff. Turn 1/4 of a turn clockwise to shut off the gas. You will need to use a 12″ or larger adjustable wrench. When the valve is perpendicular to the pipe it is in the off position. You will know that you are in the right position if the hole on the valve aligns with the hole on the adjacent pipe. These two holes are present so, when necessary, the gas company can turn off a home’s gas and then use a padlock to prevent a homeowner from turning it back on.
With the gas turned off at the home’s feed point, I disconnected the stove’s line. This pipe will be capped before I turn the main gasoline back on.