RV News RVBusiness 2021 Top 10 RVs of the Year, plus 56 additional debuts and must-see units → ×
 


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 07-17-2018, 05:59 PM   #1
Rivet Master
 
Mollysdad's Avatar

 
2017 26' Flying Cloud
Tampa , Florida
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 5,382
Blog Entries: 1
refilling tanks.

I'm embarrassed to ask, it shows how little I use propane, but I've never had to refill tanks. (I had the MH 10 years and never refilled that tank either, but it was huge.)
Are you required to take the tanks off the trailer or can they be refilled in place?
This assumes you can pull up to a vendor like Flying J.
I know when I've refilled my barbecue tank, they put it on a scale.
Mollysdad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-17-2018, 06:41 PM   #2
Rivet Master
 
SteveSueMac's Avatar

 
2012 27' Flying Cloud
W , New England
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 7,397
refilling tanks.

Nothing to be embarrassed about! We're not born with the experience of having tanks filled so at some point, we gotta learn a new thing.

I've always had to remove the tank to be filled. Some campgrounds will golf cart to your site, pick it up, fill it, and bring it back to you. Sometimes, I disconnect the tank from our parking spot in the storage yard and drive the tank in my truck the 500 yards down the road to the local RV dealer who can fill it.

Lots of options. I personally have never had anyone fill a tank while it's still sitting on the A-frame - maybe others have, though I doubt it as you observed - they are weighed on a scale while filling.

If you have the 2-tanks and the switchover, it's really handy. Once you get the red/empty indicator, your system is already pulling propane from the 2nd tank. That's when you flip the lever to the full tank (helps you remember which one to refill) and since you'll probably have weeks/months to work with, you can make whatever decision is most convenient for you. If it happens at the campground, I just prefer to do it there while I'm camping. One less errand to run later.

Good luck!
SteveSueMac is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-17-2018, 06:44 PM   #3
Rivet Master

 
2007 22' International CCD
Corona , California
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 8,604
It really depends on the vendor.

Some can fill in place, most won't. You get to disconnect and unmount the tanks, lug them to the refill point.

They refill by scale, or more likely by the gallon, and use the ten percent valve to tell the tank is full. It's a bleed screw and small orifice. When the propane level in the tank gets to 90% full, the clear gas coming out the vent starts blowing liquid, which looks white. Then they stop filling, shut the bleed valve, and charge you by the gallon on the meter. (Make sure they reset the meter BEFORE they start filling)

Yes, this is flammable gas being blown around--don't be smoking or generating sparks while refilling tanks...unless you enjoy being in the middle of a rapidly-expanding fireball...

Then you have the joy of lugging a suddenly MUCH heavier tank back to the trailer, and mounting and connecting it back up, and possibly having to purge allt the air out of your propane system to get the stoopid fridge to light again. (Sound familiar?)
__________________
Rich, KE4GNK/AE, Overkill Engineering Dept.
'The Silver HamShack' ('07 International 22FB CCD 75th Anniversary)
Multiple Yaesu Ham Radios inside and many antennae sprouting from roof, ProPride hitch, Prodigy P2 controller.
2012 shortbed CrewMax 4x4 Toyota Tacoma TV with more antennae on it.
rmkrum is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 07-17-2018, 06:56 PM   #4
Rivet Master
 
Caffeinated's Avatar
 
2015 27' Flying Cloud
Portland , Oregon
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 1,012
I have had tanks refilled once every few (3-4?)years in over 20 years of camping. Only once was I at a place that could do it while mounted on the trailer. If this is a option for you it's MUCH less hassle than dragging your empty tanks to a place where they fill them and then trying to wrestle your now stupidly heavy full tanks back into their place on the tongue. Repeat the mantra, camping is fun, camping is fun.

Mike
__________________
2015 27ft FC FB
WBCCI #3960
2019 F150 ecoboost
Caffeinated is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-17-2018, 07:10 PM   #5
Rivet Master
 
J. Morgan's Avatar
 
1972 31' Sovereign
1975 31' Excella 500
Currently Looking...
Benton , Arkansas
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 5,868
Images: 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caffeinated View Post
I have had tanks refilled once every few (3-4?)years in over 20 years of camping. Only once was I at a place that could do it while mounted on the trailer. If this is a option for you it's MUCH less hassle than dragging your empty tanks to a place where they fill them and then trying to wrestle your now stupidly heavy full tanks back into their place on the tongue. Repeat the mantra, camping is fun, camping is fun.

Mike


I thought I was doing well with my thirty pounder lasting about 70 days of full timing.... you win though!
__________________
The fact that I am opinionated does not presuppose that I am wrong......

J. Morgan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-17-2018, 07:21 PM   #6
Rivet Master

 
2007 22' International CCD
Corona , California
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 8,604
I did have a GMC van conversion I built with a rather big propane tank, maybe 40 pounds of propane. Used it for about seven years just for cooking, finally sold the van. Never refilled the tank...I assume the new owner might have...
__________________
Rich, KE4GNK/AE, Overkill Engineering Dept.
'The Silver HamShack' ('07 International 22FB CCD 75th Anniversary)
Multiple Yaesu Ham Radios inside and many antennae sprouting from roof, ProPride hitch, Prodigy P2 controller.
2012 shortbed CrewMax 4x4 Toyota Tacoma TV with more antennae on it.
rmkrum is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 07-17-2018, 07:31 PM   #7
Half a Rivet Short
 
2017 30' Classic
Carlisle , Pennsylvania
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 9,126
Hi

The basic "gotcha" is that when you fill a propane tank, you don't fill it full. Yes, that seems a bit odd. The idea is that it's safer to leave a bit of "expansion space" in the tank. The most practical way to do that is by putting the tank on a scale.

So - simple answer, you pull the tank(s) and run them to the fill station.

Bob
uncle_bob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-17-2018, 10:39 PM   #8
Rivet Master
 
J. Morgan's Avatar
 
1972 31' Sovereign
1975 31' Excella 500
Currently Looking...
Benton , Arkansas
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 5,868
Images: 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by uncle_bob View Post
Hi

The basic "gotcha" is that when you fill a propane tank, you don't fill it full. Yes, that seems a bit odd. The idea is that it's safer to leave a bit of "expansion space" in the tank. The most practical way to do that is by putting the tank on a scale.

So - simple answer, you pull the tank(s) and run them to the fill station.

Bob


Tanks with properly functioning OPD valves will cut off in time to leave an expansion space. Bleed valves in non portable tanks should tell the filler to stop when liquid propane is ejected.
__________________
The fact that I am opinionated does not presuppose that I am wrong......

J. Morgan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-18-2018, 06:48 AM   #9
4 Rivet Member
 
MWBishop's Avatar
 
2017 26' Flying Cloud
Huntsville , Alabama
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 287
And you'll find the prices can vary greatly.I've found refilling my gas grill bottles at Costco is the cheapest around here.
Bottle exchanges typically run around $20, but can get filled at Costco for around $7.
Just these refill savings alone practically pays for the membership (we grill a lot).
__________________
2017 Airstream 26U Twin
2017 F250 Platinum
MWBishop is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-18-2018, 08:18 AM   #10
Half a Rivet Short
 
2017 30' Classic
Carlisle , Pennsylvania
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 9,126
Quote:
Originally Posted by J. Morgan View Post
Tanks with properly functioning OPD valves will cut off in time to leave an expansion space. Bleed valves in non portable tanks should tell the filler to stop when liquid propane is ejected.
Hi

The point in most regulations is to *not* depend on the valve to cut things off. More or less it's a belt and suspenders approach.

Bob
uncle_bob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-18-2018, 04:02 PM   #11
Rivet Master
 
J. Morgan's Avatar
 
1972 31' Sovereign
1975 31' Excella 500
Currently Looking...
Benton , Arkansas
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 5,868
Images: 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by uncle_bob View Post
Hi



The point in most regulations is to *not* depend on the valve to cut things off. More or less it's a belt and suspenders approach.



Bob


All of the folks who fill my tanks do so on a scale,,,, but just about every time the OPD valves stop the flow before the operator.
__________________
The fact that I am opinionated does not presuppose that I am wrong......

J. Morgan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-18-2018, 04:12 PM   #12
Moderator
 
DKB_SATX's Avatar

 
2017 26' Flying Cloud
Alamo Heights , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 7,757
Images: 1
Blog Entries: 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by MWBishop View Post
And you'll find the prices can vary greatly.I've found refilling my gas grill bottles at Costco is the cheapest around here.
Bottle exchanges typically run around $20, but can get filled at Costco for around $7.
Just these refill savings alone practically pays for the membership (we grill a lot).
Oh and it's a good bet that those bottle-exchange tanks are never at capacity (not that it matters for our 30-lb tanks.) They want a fixed price and profit margin for the exchange so they short the propane by varying amounts depending on the price of propane when they're refilled.
__________________
ó David

Zero Gravitas ó 2017 Flying Cloud 26U | WBCCI# 15566

He has all of the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire. ó Sir Winston Churchill
DKB_SATX is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 07-18-2018, 06:01 PM   #13
Moderator
 
eubank's Avatar

 
Airstream - Other
2016 Interstate Grand Tour Ext
Bosque Farms , New Mexico
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 6,768
The point of the OPD was to stop home fillers from overfilling their cylinders. Note, though, that the NFPA 58 (the "bible" of propane regulation) has never permitted licensed fillers to rely on the OPD for filling purposes.

One very good reason is this: Licensed fillers rely either on gravity (which rarely fails us) or on machines like scales that are repeatedly tested for accuracy. OPDs, by contrast, may be accurate when they are manufactured, but they are never again subjected to testing to assure their function.

Lynn
__________________
WBCCI 21043
eubank is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-18-2018, 06:17 PM   #14
Rivet Master
 
J. Morgan's Avatar
 
1972 31' Sovereign
1975 31' Excella 500
Currently Looking...
Benton , Arkansas
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 5,868
Images: 11
refilling tanks.

Well they may not be supposed to use the OPD valves as a stop, but in my experience most always do.

Itís easy to tell, the tone of the pump changes when the propane backs up against the valve. It happens on most every fill of mine, no matter where I fill.

EDIT; Maybe itís because of my aluminum tanks though, where the OPD will engage before the weight tips the scales?

Could be!
__________________
The fact that I am opinionated does not presuppose that I am wrong......

J. Morgan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-18-2018, 06:38 PM   #15
Wheels Itch)(Must Travel
 
az-streamer's Avatar
 
2014 25' FB Flying Cloud
- east coastal area - , Florida
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 563
Images: 20
If you have a as tank cover do not let the service guys remove it to get to your tanks. It is too easy for them to scratch it against the jack stand post. Carefully remove it yourself before removing the tanks.
az-streamer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-18-2018, 07:43 PM   #16
Rivet Master
 
J. Morgan's Avatar
 
1972 31' Sovereign
1975 31' Excella 500
Currently Looking...
Benton , Arkansas
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 5,868
Images: 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by az-streamer View Post
If you have a as tank cover do not let the service guys remove it to get to your tanks. It is too easy for them to scratch it against the jack stand post. Carefully remove it yourself before removing the tanks.


I have never brought my trailer to fill my cylinders, I just bring the cylinders....
__________________
The fact that I am opinionated does not presuppose that I am wrong......

J. Morgan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-18-2018, 08:09 PM   #17
Rivet Master
 
2007 27' Safari FB SE
NW Oregon in a nice spot , Oregon
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 587
For what it is worth, the Ferrellgas depot who fills my tank uses the relief screw to tell when full and am then charged by the gallon. This is the company that owns the blue exchange tanks and runs big trucks around filling big tanks that use the same relief method to tell them when the tanks are full enough. They are not weighing the 100 pound tank on a scale outside my house when it gets filled.
So there are many different ways to fill depending on the skill of the filler and equipment available. At least that is how I see things.
Maybe the concern over using the bleed valve is a PA thing?
bweybright is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-18-2018, 08:33 PM   #18
Rivet Master
 
SuperTrouper's Avatar

 
2008 27' International FB
Petaluma , California
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 824
Images: 5
One thing to remember, the life of a tank is 12 years and then it either needs to be replaced or re-certified in 5 year increments. Gas companies can refuse to fill anything over 12 years old without a recert sticker. Most fillers don't check but some do. The month and year is embossed on the tank valve guard ring. If you have a 25 pounder thats expired you can turn it in to a Blue Rhino (or similar) exchange and swap 'til you get a young one and keep it. Harder to do with a 30 or 40 lb as those aren't exchanged in as many places.
SuperTrouper is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-19-2018, 07:20 AM   #19
Half a Rivet Short
 
2017 30' Classic
Carlisle , Pennsylvania
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 9,126
Hi

I certainly agree that when the truck pulls up to fill the propane tank attached to your house, there is no scale involved. Different sort of tank, different set of design rules, different approach to filling it. Last time I had to shell out to replace one ... different price.

In the case of using a scale plus the valve, it really does not matter which one stops the process. As long as one or the other stops it, you are ok. It's the pack it to to the brim ( and then put it out in the hot sun) combo that you want to avoid.

Bob
uncle_bob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-20-2018, 10:36 AM   #20
Rivet Master
 
Mollysdad's Avatar

 
2017 26' Flying Cloud
Tampa , Florida
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 5,382
Blog Entries: 1
Thank you all for the wisdom!
What started me thinking was the folks who loved their propane generators and how a tank lasted x number of HOURS. I started think of how often one would have to run to the station to refill!
Mollysdad is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
LP tank removal for refilling DeltaRon 2016 - Current Classic (all lengths) 11 07-16-2018 08:15 AM
water refilling when dry camping debbietaylor Boondocking 47 03-21-2017 01:39 AM
Northeast Refilling potable water Mifair Boondocking 18 08-22-2012 04:00 PM
New Valves & Refilling 30# Aluminum Tanks nairnchyz LP Gas, Piping, Tanks & Regulators 21 04-07-2009 08:20 AM
LP Tanks (Refilling) silversled LP Gas, Piping, Tanks & Regulators 6 12-29-2006 09:51 PM


Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by the Airstream, Inc. or any of its affiliates. Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:58 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.