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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently camped in 20degrees and the propane heater on my 2019 BANFF ran constantly. I got paranoid that my 5.9 onboard tank (which only fills to 3/4) would run out so i was going out to fill it often. It was a pain. Using the connector for a propane grill, i could reverse the flow and hook up to a 20 tank. But i would have to carry it outside. Does anyone do this?
 

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I carry two propane tanks in a vented locker. The primary tank is 11# and the spare tank is 5#. Since it's hard to tell when a tank runs dry, I always have a spare and the 5# will last at least several days until I can refill them both.

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Propane can be carried inside if you have a sealed “propane locker” c/w a vent thru the floor to atmosphere.

Propane is heavier than air & will escape thru the floor hole
I really don’t have room so an outside mount would be preferrable. I guess i could carry some 5gal tanks in my cargo box? Is there a meter i can put in line to gauge when they’re getting low?
I carry two propane tanks in a vented locker. The primary tank is 11# and the spare tank is 5#. Since it's hard to tell when a tank runs dry, I always have a spare and the 5# will last at least several days until I can refill them both.

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could you post a photo when you can?
 

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2021 3500 extended in Michigan
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2018-2500-159" aka Sun2 -NE Ohio
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Extend a Stay or Stay Awhile propane adapter.
These allow a DOT tank to be added to an ASME tank.
 

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2014, 138WB, High Roof, Gas, SW MT
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Hi,
I carry a standard 20 lb BBQ tank inside in a sealed locker that is vented to the outside.
And, two of the small 1 lb single use cans as backup for emergencies. I use and adapter sold on amazon that allows the 1lb cans to be hooked up to the same regulator that the 20 lb bottle hooks up to.
The idea is that if I screwup and run the 20 lb tank empty, the 1lb cans will get us through a cold night.

If I had made my locker just a touch larger, the 1 lb cans would fit in the empty corners.

This link gives propane usage for a cold couple days of camping. It might help you plan a little better how long you can get out of your tank.
If the tank is loose, you can get a good reading how much is left in it with a spring scale - just subtract the tank empty weight from what you weigh, and that's how much propane you have left.

Gary
 

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The website says in the Q/A section "Verified Reply - GianHello, and thank you for your message. This tank is featured with an LP pressure gauge."
It’s a float. You can hear it in the tank and it moves when you tilt the tank. It hit E when there is about 1/4 gallon in the tank and pegs at F around 4.2 gallons. The pressure gauges are useless IMO.
 

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Modern small LP tanks have the float anyway to prevent people from overfilling them. These tanks just use the mechanism and attract a gauge to the neck of the valve. The magnet inside the valve moves the needle on the gauge as the float moves up and down.
Metal Gas Nickel Fashion accessory Titanium
 

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A tank with a built in gauge would be very nice, but it means you can't trade it in at one of those million or so trade in places without losing the gauge.
They do make gauges that weigh the tank and report via bluetooth how much propane is left.

Gary
 

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2017 2500 HiTop 159 Cargo Van white.
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Exchange tanks are only 15 pound tanks, Blue Rhino, Amerigas, etc...
Exchange tanks here in SoCal are typically $21-23.
Most refill tanks are 20 pounds at $2.99 -3.99 per pound. About $16 for 4 gallons.
 

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2017 Promaster 2500 159 HT Gasser
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I found a reference to the more accurate gauge from U-haul. A boater was able to order the valve and have them mounted on his sailboat tanks which are similar to a 20 pound tank but not close enough to swap with the U-haul tank. Here is his comment and picture.
====================
One interesting thing is that there is no mechanical coupling between the float mechanism in the tank, and the gauge on the outside. This makes sense from a fuel/leak containment perspective. The gauge just clips onto the valve body, and I expect uses some sort of magnetic coupling between the indicator needle and the float.

 

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Exchange tanks are only 15 pound tanks, Blue Rhino, Amerigas, etc...
Exchange tanks here in SoCal are typically $21-23.
Most refill tanks are 20 pounds at $2.99 -3.99 per pound. About $16 for 4 gallons.
Hi,
Fully agree that Rhino is a rip off with their 15 lb refills for 20 lb tanks - don't know how they get away with it.

Some of the exchanges are full 20 lbs - this is one I use locally:

But, on the road, the convenience of being able to exchange a tank just about anywhere in 2 minutes rather than finding a place that does actual refills and then waiting for someone to have the time to do it outweighs the getting ripped off with 15 lb exchanges. That's why I don't want a tank that has features that you don't want to part with in an exchange.
But, that's just me.

Gary
 

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I suspect that the Rino 15 lb under-filled cylinder is to offset the cost of recertifying and renewing the old, out of date cylinders that get turned in. Refillable propane cylinders are date stamped with the date that they have to be pressure tested and re stamped before they can be refilled. Simple greedy marketing likely plays a great part too. I'm sure most people trading in their empty tanks have no idea that they are underfilled even though they are labeled as 15 lb.

I swapped my old, nearly out of date tanks until I got an almost new one that I've kept and refilled several times now. There's also the convenience of doing a quick swap at the local drug store or gas station too.

I've been getting quick and easy refills at one of our local U Haul locations.
 

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2014, 138WB, High Roof, Gas, SW MT
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I suspect that the Rino 15 lb under-filled cylinder is to offset the cost of recertifying and renewing the old, out of date cylinders that get turned in. Refillable propane cylinders are date stamped with the date that they have to be pressure tested and re stamped before they can be refilled. Simple greedy marketing likely plays a great part too. I'm sure most people trading in their empty tanks have no idea that they are underfilled even though they are labeled as 15 lb.

I swapped my old, nearly out of date tanks until I got an almost new one that I've kept and refilled several times now. There's also the convenience of doing a quick swap at the local drug store or gas station too.

I've been getting quick and easy refills at one of our local U Haul locations.
Hi,
This is what Rhino has to say about it:

The idea that they reduced the quantity because to inflation does not make sense. Why not just raise the price if they have to, but keep filling them full. Selling part full cylinders does not help anyone.
If they keep up this policy, in 30 years their refill tanks will only have a couple lbs of propane in them :)
My guess is that they think no one pays any attention and the part full tanks let them scam a few more bucks out of us.

Gary
 

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That 15lb deal is the reason I don’t use the swaps unless I have an out of date tank. I don’t even care about the price, it’s just a pain when you start with a 3/4 tank. For me it really comes down to how you use it. If you are on the road and only carrying one tank the electronic gauge and tank swaps are a no brainer. If you have room for two tanks I would use an auto changeover regulator. On the East coast there are plenty of places to fill propane and typically we either do it at the RV park when we are there or the BJs when we are shopping. Both are cheap at less than $3 gal.
I don’t plan on using propane for anything other than the fire pit and griddle on our build and I’m still not sure where to put the tank when we are on the road. Winnebago is putting them in the van in a sealed and vented compartment and that’s probably the way I will go.
 

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Hi,
This is what Rhino has to say about it:

The idea that they reduced the quantity because to inflation does not make sense. Why not just raise the price if they have to, but keep filling them full. Selling part full cylinders does not help anyone.
If they keep up this policy, in 30 years their refill tanks will only have a couple lbs of propane in them :)
My guess is that they think no one pays any attention and the part full tanks let them scam a few more bucks out of us.

Gary
We know of at least 2 who are paying attention 😁
 
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