100% Propane Tank Safety Tips

Propane tanks are an essential part to fuel the fire pit or grill, and it is critical to know all the safety tips that come with them. This guide will teach you propane tank safety tips for protecting your home or backyard. You can find everything from gauges and valves to adapters on Amazon and other vendors. How far should the propane tank be from your house? We answer these questions and more!

Why Should You Invest In Safety Equipment When Using Propane?

As safe as they can be, propane tanks are still fire and explosion hazards. Even if you are super careful, something wrong could happen. And before you know, you’ll have a fire in your hands. This is why safety equipment is an imperative investment when working with propane or any other fuel.

There are many reasons to keep a propane fire tank as a resident. You may have a fire pit that you ignite every evening, or you enjoy having propane gas bbq grills in the backyard from time to time. You might travel in your RV, and you must have a portable propane tank for propane gas appliances.

You may use a propane tank regularly. So, it is crucial to handle propane tanks carefully following some safety measures. Every year, many accidents occur because of mismanagement of gas tanks like propane gas tanks. Propane gas is comparatively safer than many other fuels or natural gas, but it can still cause severe injury and damage.

Many people ask me, “Is there safety on propane tanks?” and my answer always is that the user is responsible for the propane tank safety.

Gas barbecue grill
Gas (propane) barbecue grill Photo by 76400697 / Propane Fire © Vsg Art Stock Photography And Paintings | Dreamstime.com

Hence, you need to invest in safety equipment when using propane gas. Your propane gas tank must have safety parts such as a functional propane tank gauge to measure gas pressure in the tank, an adapter to connect with the primary gas source, and a valve to regulate gas flow.

You have to make sure you have extra parts to replace them anytime. Besides, you should get a propane tank safety stand, safe disconnect kit, gas detector, hose extensions, and other safety equipment. Keep fire extinguishers and water near you whenever you use a propane tank. How likely it is that propane tanks will explode might be debatable? But when it does, you better be ready.

Although the equipment and tools will cost you some money, these things are vital if there is an explosion or fire. When you know how to manage propane supply and have the safety equipment, you do not have to worry about accidents.

How Far Away From The House Should The Propane Tank Be Kept?

If you are thinking about installing a propane tank in your residence, you should place it safely. A standard size propane tank can be installed underground or above the ground. Generally, in both cases, the propane tank must be a minimum of 10 feet away from your house or any other building. 

The minimum restriction from a source of ignition is also 10 feet. The exact distance applies to property lines. However, if two propane tanks are installed within 3 feet of each other, the restriction clearance becomes 25 feet.

What Sorts Of Equipment And Adapters, Gauges, Valves Are Available On Amazon And Other Vendors? (For Propane Tanks)

Gauges, Valves Propane
Gauges, Valves Propane. Photo 29040074 / Propane © George Kroll | Dreamstime.com

As you have seen, there are commercial-grade propane gas tanks installed in a fixed place of your house. Propane tanks also come in portable cylinders that have various sizes. Users buy consumer-level propane tanks as they can quickly move the tanks.

A propane tank has some parts for safety measures. These parts are adapters, gauges, and valves. Let us see what the functions of these parts are.

Adapters 

Propane adapters help you save money in many ways. You may have an old propane tank that does not match modern appliances. It is also used for refilling small propane tanks from large-size tanks. They are easy to install. You just have to thread the adapter’s head into the propane tank’s valve. They have a shut-off system to stop the overflow of gas.

You will find different adapters available on Amazon, Wal-Mart, and eBay. Also, check your local hardware shops. You can get them with a hose or without a hose. Refill adapters and adapters for one-time use cylinders are also available on Amazon and Wal-Mart.

For example, you can buy a 5 Feet Propane Hose Adaptor that connects a 1 lb Portable Appliance to a 20 lb LP Tank Converter. These hose pipes can be 5 to 15 feet long. They have an adapter on one end and a fitting on the other end to connect with different appliances, such as a large propane tank, grill, propane fire pit, and such.

Gauges

Modern propane tanks come with a gauge that shows the amount of propane gas in the tank. It is at the top of a propane tank. To install an inline gauge to your propane tank, you have to close the valve so no gas can come out. Then remove the regulator, and connect the one end of the gauge to the valve.

After that, connect the regulator to the other end of the gauge. Turn the valve to check the gas in the tank. The indicator will show how much gas you have. If you have a full tank, the gauge will show 80%. When you are low gas or no gas, check the indicator of your propane tank. Once the gauge reaches the yellow mark the propane supply runs low it’s then time to refill your tank.

You can get a gauge from Amazon and other eCommerce platforms. You should buy a universal gauge from a reputed brand as they can give you an accurate reading. Many high-quality gauges also come with leak detectors.

Valves

The valve in a propane tank is to turn on and turn off the gas flow. Now, modern propane tanks come with OPD valves. These valves control the pressure in the tanks and prevent explosions. You should not refill your tank at more than 80%. Otherwise, the pressure gets too high inside the tank. The OPD valve prevents excess gas from going into the tank.

You can buy OPD valves for different tank sizes such as 20, 30, and 40 lbs online or from your local vendor. You can replace OPD valves at home, but make sure to learn how to do it before removing the valve.

Leak Detector 

Old propane leak gas detectors may leak when you do not pay much attention. The hosepipe of the gas line can get punctured, or you may forget to turn off the propane gas. Whatever the reason is, you need to get alert of such a situation. You may smell gas the carbon monoxide when you are around the propane tank. But what if you are not around?

To avoid unwanted accidents, you can install a carbon monoxide leak detector. These detectors start alarming when they spot a high amount of carbon monoxide in the atmosphere.

Propane Cylinder Stabilizing Base

When you use a propane cylinder outside, you may not always find a stable ground to place it. Besides, you will need the propane tank to stay upright while moving them around in your car or RV. Propane tanks should not be toppled over when it is full. So, you can buy a propane tank stabilizing base to keep the propane tank stable.

Propane Tank Cover

Propane tanks often stay outside in various conditions. Now, is it safe to leave the propane tank outside? Well, the tank’s exterior can fade or get damaged by the sun. Therefore, buy a cover for the propane tank. These covers are made of heavy-duty polyester. When you store propane tanks, you can use the cover to protect the tank from dust and insects.

Tips For Storing, Transporting, Repairing Leaks, Refilling Tanks

Buying safety equipment and tools is not enough to maintain a propane gas tank. You need to follow some rules and regulations to avoid accidents related to propane gas.

So here are a handful of safety precautions you may adopt.:

Propane Tank Storing Tips

You may not be using your propane tank for a while. In that case, you should store the propane tank properly.

  • Close the valve of the propane tank tightly. Then remove the adapter and gas line from the tank. Before putting these things away, check them for any damage. Your propane tank should be repaired or replaced if it is damaged in any way.
  • Never store your propane tank inside your home or even an enclosed space, like your garage or basement. If you do not shut off the valve properly, it can leak gas.
  • Cover your propane gas tank and place it outdoors on a level ground where no direct sunlight or rain can touch it. The place should be dry and well ventilated.
  • Always store your propane tank in an upright position. You can use a tank base to ensure it does not topple over.
  • The propane tank should be away from the vents or windows of your home. Also, there should be no flammable materials within 10 feet of the tank.
  • When it is time to bring out the propane tank, clean it and check for any damages.

Propane Tank Transporting Tips

  • Before transporting the propane tank, turn off the valve. No gas should leak. Put on the valve cap tightly.
  • Do not place your propane tank on the car trunk or front seat. Put it upright on the back seat’s floor and secure it with a rope. You may securely place the tank on the seat and put the seatbelt around it.
  • When you are transporting propane gas, keep the window of the car open. The inside of the car needs to stay well ventilated.
  • In no circumstances you can leave portable propane tanks inside a hot car. The heat can expand the gas and cause an explosion.

Propane Tank Repairing Leaks

A propane tank or pipes can leak for various reasons. When propane escapes, you will smell. It smells like a rotten egg. You may also hear a hissing sound. Immediately turn off the valve and leave the spot. Call an expert or the fire department for a safety check. 

  • If you use the residential propane tank after a long time, check it for leakage with a leakage detector solution. Apply the solution on and between the valve and the regulator outlet.
  • Slowly open the gas supply valve to check for bubbles. If you see bubbles, tighten all the connections well and check again. You can call for expert help if you cannot solve the problem.

Propane Tank Refilling Tips

Propane Tank Refill
Propane Tank Refill. Photo by 50421180 © Jackstudio | Dreamstime.com
  • Use a gauge to check the amount of propane gas in the tank. When it goes down to 20%, you should refill it. If you have installed a propane tank at your house, call the company for a refill. If you use a residential propane tank, take it to a nearby station and refill it.
  • The tank should not be entirely full. It should not go beyond 80%. Too much gas inside the tank may cause rapture.
  • There may not be any smell, but gas may escape slowly in a tiny amount. If you suspect something like that, ask an expert to check the cylinder when you go for a refill.

Propane Tank Size Reference By Countries Across The World (Including Pricing)

Most common sizes of propane tank around the world: 

Tank Weight

20 lbs
100lbs
420lbs
500lbs
1000lbs

The price of propane tanks varies from country to country. It depends on the availability and supply of the gas. Here are the costs of propane in some of the major countries of the world:

Country USA Russia UK Australia New Zealand
Price 0.8 USD/L 30.4 RUB/L 0.7 GBP/L 1.13 AUD/L 1.22 NZD/L

Who Are The Top Suppliers Of Propane Tanks In America, Asia, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, And Africa?

Propane gas has become popular all over the world. Hence, many companies manufacture propane gas and supplies in their country or across the globe.

Here are some of the propane gas suppliers from different countries:

Leading Dealers Of Propane Tanks In America: 

Best Vendors Of Propane Tanks In Asia

Upper edge Retailers Of Propane Tanks Europe

Top Suppliers Of Propane Tanks Australia

Notable Distributors Of Propane Tanks in New Zealand:

Greatest Manufacturers Of Propane Tanks in Africa

Gas And Propane Tanks: A Brief History

Marcellin Berthelot, a French chemist, discovered propane in 1857, but it wasn’t until 1910 that it was identified as a volatile component of gasoline. Walter Snelling, an American scientist, was the first to notice that the gas could be used as a source of energy. He founded the American Gasol Co. with three partners and was the first to market propane in 1912.

In 1913, Frank Phillips, the founder of Phillips Petroleum Co., bought the patent of propane for $50,000 from Dr Snelling. At first, propane was used only for cutting metals. But gradually it became popular in other sectors. By 1945, the sales of propane reached about 1 billion gallons.

Today, propane gas has become popular all over the world. It is now being used in transportation, home, agricultural, industrial, and commercial sectors.

Conclusion

You would already have learned a great deal about propane gas safety from this article. Propane gas is an environment-friendly fuel. You can buy propane tanks for regular use in your household. But you should follow the safety rules to keep yourself and your family safe from danger.

Sources of Information

Thomas Publishing Company. (2022, January 28). Propane Tanks. Thomasnet.Com. Retrieved January 29, 2022, from https://www.thomasnet.com/products/propane-tanks-83255000-1.html

Gas, L. P. (2022, January 10). Top Propane Retailers. LP Gas. Retrieved January 29, 2022, from https://www.lpgasmagazine.com/top-retailers/

HomeGuide Editors. (2021, June 11). How Much Does A Propane Tank Cost? HomeGuide. Retrieved January 29, 2022, from https://homeguide.com/costs/propane-tank-cost

Star Gas Products, Inc. (2012, August). The History of Propane. Star Gas Products. https://www.stargasproducts.com/forms/The_History_of_Propane.pdf

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