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Old 05-29-2011, 12:40 PM   #1
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Switching over to full tank problems

Hello,

This morning I was switching over to my second (full) propane tank on our '97 Excella. I have done this before many times but for some reason, nothing is lighting after the switch. By switching over I mean I am closing the empty tank, opening the full one, and turning the little knob with the arrow towards the full tank. The hot water heater won't fire, the stove and oven are "dead".

My husband is out of town so he can't look at it...any suggestions?

Thank you,
Melanie
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Old 05-29-2011, 12:43 PM   #2
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Are you absolutely certain the tank is full? That's the first thing I'd check.
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Old 05-29-2011, 12:49 PM   #3
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Does your regulator have the little red/green bubble indicator that shows the tank status? If so, was it showing red before the switch, and when was the indicator last checked? On ours, the tank switch is automatic. The little level just shows the status of the tank that it is pointed to. One time we forgot to keep track of the status, and the second tank had run out before we noticed it.

Brian
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Old 05-29-2011, 12:56 PM   #4
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Melanie I know this may sound stupid but did you open the valve on the top of the "full tank". You didn't mention doing that in your original post.
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Old 05-29-2011, 01:08 PM   #5
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i think she switched the regulator back to the empty tank. it will often take a few lighting attempts to purge any air in the lines.
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Old 05-29-2011, 04:36 PM   #6
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Yes, I am quite sure that the tank is full. My husband just filled both tanks a little over a week ago. It has been a chilly week where we are and I cook a lot so one tank is gone already, but the other tank is full. And yes I did open up the valve on top of the "full" tank.
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Old 05-29-2011, 04:41 PM   #7
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Our automatic tank switch doesn't work anymore and I can't imagine going through two full tanks in about a week. There is also NO clicking or anything when I am trying to light the stove...and I am lighting it with one of those stick lighters...
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Old 05-29-2011, 06:16 PM   #8
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With all that you have explained, your regulator has possibly gone bad, especially since the automatic tank switch-over feature no longer functions.

Try turning the empty tank into the 'on' position. This may relieve some back pressure, and the valve may open to the full tank. If this doesn't work, you may be looking at replacing the regulator.

Brian
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Old 05-29-2011, 06:42 PM   #9
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I recall a comment made before that the new tank valves have a safety feature that shuts off the flow of gas if there is a sudden rush of gas(like when a pipe ruptures).
Could it be that when she opened the tank valve the safety shut. Try turning off the gas at the tank. Then open the valve very slowly. Then try lighting your stove. It is always the easiest to light after running out of gas.
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Old 05-29-2011, 06:49 PM   #10
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I will try those suggestions tomorrow...in the meantime, when I got home this evening, I tried hooking up to our little spare tank. I hooked the gas line from the "empty" tank to the spare tank and turned the arrow (is that called the regulator?) to the empty tank side (the one hooked up to the spare) and now we have gas...stove and hot water heater are working. I will play around with the suggestion above.

Thanks for the help.
Melanie
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Old 05-29-2011, 07:05 PM   #11
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In the interim, if you're feeling strong, you could physically swap the tanks from one side to the other. Just a thought.
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Old 05-29-2011, 07:25 PM   #12
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I would start by removing both tanks - you should then be able to determine if one or both are empty. If they have propane left in any useful amount, it will be liquid and will slosh around. No sloshing - almost certainly an empty tank or tanks.

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