Trailer Life Magazine Open Roads Forum: Travel Trailers: Propane tanks
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Integritas

NV

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Posted: 10/07/18 12:07pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Okay I have several questions and am going to post them as different topics in case others have these questions too and they don't just get lost in a general post.

Propane tanks....... I have 2 on the front of my trailer. I do not know how to tell how full they are. Can I put gauges on them? they seem to be linked so do I open both of them when we are going on propane or just one?

When you fill them do you have to take them off the trailer or can the fill station do it when we are on our way out while they are on the trailer?

I smell propane when I get up towards the tongue of the trailer, should I take the tanks and have them fixed or is that normal? It is not crazy overwhelming but I know I am by the propane tanks.

I think for now that is it for propane questions.

donn0128

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Posted: 10/07/18 12:18pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Propane tank gages are pretty useless,
Smell gas you have a leak! Turn the tanks off, and get the trailer to someone that knows what he is doing.

DO NOT USE ANYTHING UNTIL YOU GET THE LEAK FIXED.


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Integritas

NV

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Posted: 10/07/18 12:25pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

So how do you know how much propane you have?

The tanks are off so that is why I am wondering why I smell propane.

We are going out for a two week trip tomorrow but might be able to get them to a place when we stop in SoCal. The trailer is new to us and we are new to adventuring so I want to to it right. We will probably be needing to winterize the trailer when we get back. So I will be check that out soon. Right now just preparing for a trip.

jfkmk

NJ

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Posted: 10/07/18 12:26pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I echo not using the propane until you get the leak fixed!

How old is the trailer/tanks? It is highly unlikely the tanks themselves are leaking. Check out the hoses, regulator, fittings first. You can make a solution of dish detergent/water and brush it on. The leak will be evident by bubbling.

2oldman

NM

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Posted: 10/07/18 12:27pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Integritas wrote:

should I take the tanks and have them fixed or is that normal?
If there's any significant propane leak, it's more likely the hoses than the tanks.

A little propane smell is normal for my tanks, but they're enclosed.

SidecarFlip

SE Michigan

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Posted: 10/07/18 12:38pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

2oldman wrote:

Integritas wrote:

should I take the tanks and have them fixed or is that normal?
If there's any significant propane leak, it's more likely the hoses than the tanks.

A little propane smell is normal for my tanks, but they're enclosed.


Actually that applies to mine as well. They are enclosed too. methyl mercaptan, the odorant in propane stinks afterwards always. I hate that smell.


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BarabooBob

Baraboo, WI

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Posted: 10/07/18 01:34pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You have to remove the portable tanks from the camper to get them refilled.

You can buy a temperature sensitive strip that glues to the lp tank and can help you determine how much fuel is in your tank. You attach the strip to the tank, pour hot water on the side of the tank where the strip is mounted, the strip will change color when you pour the hot water on it, the strip will change color less at the level of the liquid that is in the tank. Here is a link:
http://www.leevalley.com/us/garden/page.aspx?cat=2,40734,40996&p=55008


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FrankShore

Laguna Beach, CA

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Posted: 10/07/18 02:03pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Here are 4 ways to check your propane tanks

https://www.cnet.com/how-to/ways-to-estimate-how-much-propane-you-have-left/


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MitchF150

Puyallup, WA

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Posted: 10/07/18 02:25pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You can run some hot water on the side of the tank. Then feel the tank where it stays cold. That's the level of propane.

You can also remove the tank and weigh it. The lighter it is, the less full it is. While you have it off, you can also swish it around and if you hear fluid swishing around, it has some gas in it.

How I run my tanks is I have an auto change over regulator (it's a 2002 model, so most any new rig should have this feature too) and I open both tanks fully open. There is a lever that you turn to point to either tank. The tank it's pointing to will be the ONLY tank you draw from.

You should also note that there will be a GREEN or RED band on top of the regulator. This indicates that the tank you are drawing from still has some gas in it.. If it's RED, that means you are drawing from the other tank and you need to swap out the empty one.

Move the lever to the other tank, remove the empty one, refill it, put it back on and wait for the other tank to empty. Repeat...

But, that's just what I do.. Does not work for everyone, so just gotta figure out what your propane usage is and how often you are willing to check the actual tanks and go from there..

Good luck!

Mitch


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Lwiddis

Cambria, CA

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Posted: 10/07/18 02:48pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I just use one until it’s empty and switch over. Then I remove the empty one, load it in the Tahoe and find a place to fill it. No one uses that much propane. If you smell propane anytime except when filling or removing a tank, get it fixed pronto.


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