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Old 11-01-2010, 08:08 PM   #1
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Propane help

Have removed old appliances from my 1965 Ambassador and am needing some guidance to replace the propane lines in the trailer. Can flexible propane hose be obtained for this purpose?... and is there some reference material for me to review online to become familiar. Am trying to plan the main line and lines to the stove,oven,fridge heater, etc. I have exisiting copper lines but the ends are all cut off. Would like to hear advice on this subject from those of you with experience.thanks.
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Old 11-01-2010, 08:19 PM   #2
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Have removed old appliances from my 1965 Ambassador and am needing some guidance to replace the propane lines in the trailer. Can flexible propane hose be obtained for this purpose?... and is there some reference material for me to review online to become familiar. Am trying to plan the main line and lines to the stove,oven,fridge heater, etc. I have exisiting copper lines but the ends are all cut off. Would like to hear advice on this subject from those of you with experience.thanks.
Typically in most RVs, all of the LP supply lines are either black pipe or copper, with the exception of the properly rated hose used to connect the LP tanks to the regulator and then the regulator to the main LP supply line. Most connections are made using double flair fittings with NO SEALANTS on the threads.

There have been many questions about using metallic flex pipe like when connecting a domestic water heater or stove in a house, but these ARE NOT RATED for RV use and should be avoided. Do it right he first time and you won't have any problems down the road.

The RVIA has available standards for use in all recreational vehicles. You can google them if you are interested, but staying with the above listed materials will keep you out of trouble.
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Old 11-01-2010, 08:37 PM   #3
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existing copper lines

are the existing copper lines still useable then? would need to learn more about working with copper tubing..
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Old 11-01-2010, 08:44 PM   #4
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are the existing copper lines still useable then? would need to learn more about working with copper tubing..
When working with propane and cut lines it is very important to have someone who knows what they are doing do the work or it could be a verrrry nasty experience. No one can tell what your lines look like or if they are usable in some way online. And if they feel they can we'll say a prayer for you.
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Old 11-01-2010, 08:45 PM   #5
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The copper should be good to go as long as it is not kinked. A kink might result in a leak now or in the future.

Copper gas lines generally are connected with Flare Fittings as apposed to compression fittings. Flaring is not hard to do you just have to buy the tool.

Keep in mind that if the old flared fitting have been cut off the tubing may be too short to fit up as originally laid out.

If the piping has been open for a period of time I would suggest blowing them out with compressed air as someone may have moved in, spiders or others.
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Old 11-01-2010, 08:57 PM   #6
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You can pick up the flare tool for like $15.00 or so at Ace hardware (I haven't had much luck with any of the bigbox stores) -- it's very, very simple to do (I had to essentially extend my copper by 6 inches for a new refer, and had to take the plunge and essentially replace that portion). A few brass fittings, the flare tool and 20 minutes -- easy peasy!
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Old 11-01-2010, 08:59 PM   #7
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On my 68 I used the original large trunk line as it was in good shape and had no leaks. The flares on copper tubing are not double but rather single flares. Double flares are used on steel brake lines and some automotive fuel line applications, but as far as I know, only simple single flares are used on copper tubing for LP lines. Get yourself a flaring tool and practice several flares on scrap copper. Don't use the old stuff off your trailer, copper gets hard over the years so practice with a new piece. After a few tries you will see just how much tubing you need to extend above the tool to make a perfect flare. Get a set of tubing benders while you are at it. Copper tubing is very soft and will collapse if you try to bend a tight radius without a bender. Harbor Freight makes a kit with benders, tubing cutter, and flare tool for a good price and it works fine. Not what you would buy if you were a professional plumber for for a dozen or so flares on the trailer, it should work fine. ACE hardware or HD has flare tools as well. As stated above, no sealant is used. If the flair is done correctly, the soft copper seats and seals as the flair nut is tightened and you won't have leaks. But, be sure and check each connection with soapy water to make sure. LP lines in RV run at a very low PSI ( actually measured in inches of water) but will leak if the flares are done correctly and the joints are not tight.
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Old 11-02-2010, 09:16 AM   #8
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On my 68 I used the original large trunk line as it was in good shape and had no leaks. The flares on copper tubing are not double but rather single flares. Double flares are used on steel brake lines and some automotive fuel line applications, but as far as I know, only simple single flares are used on copper tubing for LP lines. Get yourself a flaring tool and practice several flares on scrap copper. Don't use the old stuff off your trailer, copper gets hard over the years so practice with a new piece. After a few tries you will see just how much tubing you need to extend above the tool to make a perfect flare. Get a set of tubing benders while you are at it. Copper tubing is very soft and will collapse if you try to bend a tight radius without a bender. Harbor Freight makes a kit with benders, tubing cutter, and flare tool for a good price and it works fine. Not what you would buy if you were a professional plumber for for a dozen or so flares on the trailer, it should work fine. ACE hardware or HD has flare tools as well. As stated above, no sealant is used. If the flair is done correctly, the soft copper seats and seals as the flair nut is tightened and you won't have leaks. But, be sure and check each connection with soapy water to make sure. LP lines in RV run at a very low PSI ( actually measured in inches of water) but will leak if the flares are done correctly and the joints are not tight.
Bruce,

The current RVIA standard for copper LP lines is a double flare. They are indicated because they provide an extra layer of copper and make a much tighter seal. Also, copper tends to work harden over time from bouncing around in an older trailer and it is strongly recommended that you replace all copper lines running from the supply trunk.
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Old 11-02-2010, 09:25 AM   #9
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Good to know, thanks.
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Old 11-03-2010, 08:26 PM   #10
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thanks

i have also been given advice to simply run new lines and then let a professional do the flairing and double were recommended as well. may go that route. can the materials be obtained at a home depot or lowes...etc.
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Old 11-03-2010, 08:33 PM   #11
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I don't think HD will have gas copper piping. You may have to go to a plumbing supply house.

Gas copper is yellow plastic covered.
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Old 11-04-2010, 07:17 AM   #12
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I don't think HD will have gas copper piping. You may have to go to a plumbing supply house.

Gas copper is yellow plastic covered.
Nope! Not ALL gas copper is yellow covered. Every RV that I work on has bare copper used for the final legs of the LP supply lines (sometimes wrapped in split loom used also for wiring). The spec calls for 'type K' or better copper and I have found some in the big box stores.
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Old 11-04-2010, 07:07 PM   #13
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double flare

I had someone show me how to flare copper today. I also heard from another few people that it should be double flared and buy the tool for that
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Old 11-04-2010, 07:22 PM   #14
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Double flaring on copper gas pipe is a resent idea of the "Do Gooders" and unless you are dealing with a newer trailer that someone might question it on resale I can not see no reason to double flare. 100 of thousands of trailers were made with single flaring.

Double flaring is common on hydraulic brake lines because of the line pressure. Gas is only at 11 in. of water column.
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