PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank

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Mkinzi94
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2010/06/15 17:17:27 (permalink)

PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank

So I did search but too many hits for PROPANE and only one for Blue Rhino...

So you experts weigh in - Ace Hardware salesman said they give a full 20 lb refill on tank instead of 15 lb from Blue Rhino due to OSHA regulations preventing storage of 20 lb tanks beyond the 15 lbs.  Better/same price with more fuel!

Do refill places always give you a full 20 lbs?
#1

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    knightda8
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/06/15 17:44:42 (permalink)
    I believe since the advent of the overfill prevention device, 20lb tanks are filled to a max of 17.5lbs. When fuel prices sky rocketed a lot of the swap propane companies went to 15lbs basically keep their price lower and roll the wool over the consumers eyes. I basically read this on a sign on an AmeriGas propane tank cage about a class action lawsuit against them...

     It is pretty much always a better deal to get a tank filled then to swap. First you are paying for what they actually give you... If they only fill the tank half way, you only pay half the price. Second the price by volume is usually cheaper. The only thing that is a PITA with filling is the hydro date on the tank, which is something you don't have to worry about when swapping them. That being said a lot of the swapped tanks are either near out of hydro or they don't stamp the tank so you can get it filled.... you are then stuck swapping it. Don't be afraid to look at the date on the tank when swapping and if it is near out of hydro, ask for another one. I believe hydro tests are good for 10 years.


    --Doug Knight
    post edited by knightda8 - 2010/06/15 17:51:33
    #2
    muffin336
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/06/15 18:21:23 (permalink)
    No more than what I burn, I just swap them out and I have a new clean tank. It's just a conveinance thing to me.
    #3
    THE WILD DOG
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/06/15 19:20:43 (permalink)
    it's usually only filled to 80% capacity roughly. You have to allow for pressure and things like that. if you put 20# in a 20# tank, I'd hate to be driving next to you...

    Same reason why cans explode when you freeze them, and when they get too hot.
    #4
    Bearadise
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/06/15 19:35:07 (permalink)
    You could try a slightly larger tank if you needed more run-time before you had to swap-out tanks.

    This webpage talks a bit about "different sizes and shapes of propane cylinders used by consumers for a variety applications." Here is a link: www -DOT- propane101 -DOT- com/consumerpropanecylinders.htm You will need to cut and paste, then change the -DOT- back to just plain "." without the quotes.

    Rich

    #5
    porkbeaks
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/06/15 20:05:27 (permalink)
    For the last 15 years or more, my 20 pound propane tanks have weighed 37 pounds when full (give or take 8 ounces).
    #6
    lornaschinske
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/06/16 10:46:12 (permalink)
    #7
    Mkinzi94
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/06/16 11:58:21 (permalink)
    lornaschinske




    Thanks for that link (you too Bearadise)...good stuff to know when you're used to just swapping out.

    My local Ace Hardware charges $15.07 for a 20 lb refill...quite a bit better than $18-$20 for 15 lbs.

    Thanks to all who responded!
    #8
    ces1948
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/06/16 21:00:38 (permalink)
    My local Ace wouldn't fill mine because of the date. I foolishly ran over to Walgreens and did a swap which cost $25. If I had been a little more patient I could have swapped at Lowe's for $17.95
    #9
    lornaschinske
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/06/17 11:31:18 (permalink)
    For those who do not know it... You can get your tanks re-certified at the local propane company after the 12 yr mfg date stamped on the tank.  Your tanks must be in good shape with out any bad rust (they look carefully at the base).  I have used tanks that were well past the original certification date. They were always well taken care of and cleaned/repainted every couple of years.  The propane dealers certification is only good for about 2 or 3 years.  And not all other propane companies will honour it (a fact we found out when we ran out of LP in FL and the company that certified the tank was in SC).  Usually it is cheaper to refill a tank at a fill station than to swap, but not always.  Yesterday we swapped a tank at WalMart for $17.95 (plus we picked up a $3 off mail in rebate from  a convenience store tank swap location) .  At a local (Socorro, NM) RV park, it is running $3.50 per gallon (BBQ tanks hold 5 gal). In TX, the propane trucks would roll thru the RV parks and refill both permanent mount tanks and removable tanks.  When we left Corpus on June 1st, a 20 lb BBQ tank was running $15 to refill.  Not all tank trucks carry the adapter to refill BBQ tanks... when we lived in a house in TN, we would get our 500lb home tank filled and sometimes I would have them refill all of our BBQ tanks at the same time... only one of the LP truck drivers would carry the adapter.  It was great when he would deliver since I got my BBQ tanks filled at the much lower bulk price that I was paying to have my home tank filled.  At the time we had lots of tanks... now we seem to be down to 5 of the little 20#s.
    post edited by lornaschinske - 2010/06/17 11:33:44
    #10
    AZdog
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/06/17 19:42:48 (permalink)
    I fill my 40# tank for about $16 (about 9 gallons) around here at a local independent gas station.  U-haul charges twice that amount.
    #11
    Doggie Bites
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/06/18 08:27:54 (permalink)
    My local BJ's charge about $3 to $4 less than others in the neiborhood.
    #12
    DelaDog
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/07/05 11:38:01 (permalink)
    How often is everyone filling up thier tanks?  Is it every two days once a week? 
    #13
    Tasty Dogs
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/07/05 11:47:09 (permalink)
    I have a small cart with two burner stave and got 2 weeks out of my first tank.
    #14
    TrentonDog
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/07/05 12:26:14 (permalink)
    A 20lb. propane tank is designed to safely hold 4.6 gallons of liquid propane (20 lbs.) There is sufficient head room for expansion designed into the tank. If the tank cannot be filled with 20 lbs of fuel, either the OPD is not adjusted correctly or the operator is not filling the tank to capacity.

    I have my tanks filled at a welding supply company and have a wholesale account with them. I get my tanks filled for 10 bucks, retail customers pay $18. The tare weight on my 20# tanks is 18 lbs, so my full tanks are 38 lbs. full. Another gas station down the street charges 15 bucks to "fill" your tank, and he only puts about 15 lbs of fuel in.

    I also have a little 5lb. vertical tank in the truck just in case the 20lb tank runs out.
    #15
    Matt Gleason
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/07/05 13:25:58 (permalink)
    Are gas stations and other amateur tank filling facilities limited to 15 lbs by some state or federal law?  Just curious...
    post edited by Hot Dog King - 2010/07/05 14:09:01
    #16
    TrentonDog
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/07/05 13:50:58 (permalink)
    Hot Dog King

    Are gas stations and other ameteur tank filling facilities limited to 15 lbs by some state or federal law?  Just curious...


    I'm pretty sure that the person filling the tank must have propane dispensing certification. (servsafe for lpg....) I doubt that many gas stations comply. This is why the govt. started requiring the overfill protection devices in the first place. Untrained people were occasionally filling tanks past their 20 lb. capacity, so when the liquid expanded, the tank would release gas through the safety vent to prevent a tank failure but the release of the fuel could cause a fire if there was an ignition source.
     
    I think that many places "short" their customers because they can. Unlike gasoline, you don't pay by the gallon and cannot see how much is pumped into the cylinder. At least Blue Rhino tells you that you are not getting a "full" cylinder. But they tell you it is because of "safety" which is bunk. Just go to any gas cylinder manufacturer and you'll see the capacity in the spec sheets.
    #17
    Matt Gleason
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/07/05 17:48:44 (permalink)
    Some may not be able to read a scale...
    I know someone that received an overfilled tank, it blew off in the back of his van, scared the heck out of him!
    #18
    TrentonDog
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/07/05 18:47:15 (permalink)
    Hot Dog King

    Some may not be able to read a scale...
    I know someone that received an overfilled tank, it blew off in the back of his van, scared the heck out of him!


    Pretty much impossible now with the OPD installed on all DOT approved tanks.
     
    Some operators may not look at the tare weight stamped on the tank, causing inaccurate filling when using a scale.
     
    In a perfect world, every propane supplier would charge by the gallon instead of charging the same flat rate whether the tank is partially full or not. Apparently, there are a few that will do this for grill sized tanks. (but not around me!)
     
     
     
    #19
    Gene's Dogs
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/07/05 20:30:39 (permalink)
    TrentonDog, have you tried U-Haul for propane by the gallon?
    #20
    Matt Gleason
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/07/05 20:38:53 (permalink)
    I remember going to Agway years ago and the guy there would fill the tank for me.  Everything these days is quick quick quick.  I see how some companies think they can(do) cheat people out of a few ounces here and there.  An ounce here and there adds up to profits.
    #21
    Healthy
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/07/05 20:41:57 (permalink)
    I have seen gas gauges for propane tanks at sam's and walmart. Has anyone used those..that should give you the best idea your getting as full a tank as possible. Or are they useless. I am trying to figure out how long I can go on a tank..the kid I got the cart from says it was full but I don't know... can't see or tell..I think its half a tank..anyway whats the word on the gauges with different color pie chart for each level
    #22
    TrentonDog
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/07/05 20:55:10 (permalink)
    Those gauges that screw in the valve are pretty much useless. The vapor pressure in the tank is pretty much constant from full to empty and more dependent on temperature than anything.

    The most accurate gauges measure the liquid level in the tank. Some are a thermally sensitive strip that adheres to the side of the tank and show liquid level when you are using the tank because the liquid will be colder from evaporation. The best one (IMO) is the Manchester tank "Sure Flame" 20 lb tank with built in liquid level gauge. It is a little non-linear (like a car's fuel gauge) but it works great.

    Gene - as far as U-Haul for fuel, I don't think the U-Haul places around here sell propane but I'll double check. It would be nice to just pay for what they put in. This way, I can top-off my cylinders instead of running them empty.

    Joe BBQ, who fills his Weber grill tank every year won't really miss 5 lbs of fuel. But as a vending cart owner, I know that a full tank will run the rig for 5 days. If I'm down 5 pounds of fuel, it impacts my business.
    #23
    zumguteetz
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/07/06 07:57:01 (permalink)
    I have always and will continue to "fill er up" at my local Uhaul store. I also charge my battery and fill my water tank from their store. It is a larger location with all these bells and whistles.
    #24
    Matt Gleason
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/07/06 18:25:39 (permalink)
    20 lb / 4.6 gallons = 4.4 lbs per gallon

    4.4 lbs = 70.4 oz

    323.84 oz per tank

    $15.00 per tank = $ .05 cents per oz

    Weigh your tank each day for a week, document the weight each day, at the end of the week find the average usage and calculate your propane cost per day.

    For example, if your average daily weight is 32 oz then your daily cost is $1.60.
    #25
    TrentonDog
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    Re:PROPANE 15 pounds in a 20 pound tank 2010/07/06 18:33:42 (permalink)
    Checked out my local U-Haul store. No dice on propane. They've got storage facilities, trailer rental, truck rental - but no gas.

    Owner says it's too expensive to comply with all the regulations in NJ. Probably why propane is so expensive here in NJ - excessive regulation/liability insurance, etc. *sigh*


    #26
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