Gauges for propane tanks. - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-11-2017, 04:55 PM   #1
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Gauges for propane tanks.

We're about to take a cross country trip out west and need some advice on buying gauges that show how much propane is in our tanks. We have two large tanks for our scamp so does this mean we need two gauges? Is it preferable to get gauges rather then the tapes that also tell you how much fuel is left in your tanks?
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Old 08-11-2017, 05:02 PM   #2
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Gauges that connect to propane line are great for showing you what you already know, there's some propane left or none.
I use and LCD strip on the front of the tank and poor hot water over it. If I had two tanks I leave with them both full, run off of one only when goes empty get it filled while running off the other. Simple no cost method.
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Old 08-11-2017, 05:02 PM   #3
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These gauges are useless. ( from Costco ).
My buddy bought two, one for him and one for me. We came to the conclusion that they reduce the gas flow, after trying them with propane bbqs.
Both of us tossed them. I paused long enough to take a picture.
I now use a digital luggage scale to weigh the tank and contents. Subtract the tank ( tare wt. ) and you know how many pounds of propane are left.
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Old 08-11-2017, 05:15 PM   #4
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They are USELESS!!!!! I bought one and used it for a few months then the stove would not light - Took it off and all worked again. I bought another thinking it was defective - did it again with this one. Want one cheap?
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Old 08-11-2017, 05:38 PM   #5
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DITTO!! Completely USELESS!

No gauge really needed especially if you have two tanks.
Flying-J and Loves truck stops now sell propane buy the gallon so, when in doubt, top it off.
Unless your trip is greatly extended(almost full time) two tanks should last the whole trip.
One twenty pound tank usually lasts us about a year with heat , hot water and fridge. (maybe 10-12 weeks with a few nights of heat)
We have the only type that works and that's an actual float gauge. Ours has a separate port on the tank but the new ones have an actual float gauge built into the main valve.
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Old 08-11-2017, 05:51 PM   #6
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I always have a spare tank just incase and I use this spare for my table top stove and grill.
Where the tank on the trailer is clamped down it is a pain to un-clamp to heft it and tell by the weight if there is a good supply of propane but the spare one is lifted all the time and I can tell there is plenty in it. If the one on the trailer does go empty I can put the spare on and then either use the small 1# tanks (I keep a few under the bench) to run the grill or stove or find a trade in spot to get a new 20# tank.
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Old 08-11-2017, 05:55 PM   #7
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I also use a luggage scale. If you are willing to purchase new tanks, there are versions that have a gauge that is attached to the internal float that are accurate.
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Old 08-11-2017, 06:46 PM   #8
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Dang I just bought one of these and haven't even installed it yet. Now it has to go in the landfill already? Sheesh.

Guess I'll get one of those stick-on tape things you put water on like mentioned above. I know those work. I've just got 10 pounds so kinda need to watch it. Glad someone tested this before I did on a trip!
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Old 08-11-2017, 07:40 PM   #9
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The add on gauges work on pressure, not fluid level. The only tank gauges that work are the ones that operate off of a float in the tank. I don't think they are worth the extra cost, except maybe on forklifts and such.

I pour hot water down the side of the tank and then run my finger up the side, bottom to top. Where my finger gets hot, that's the propane level. No, hot water down the side is not going to blow up the tank.

I'm using an 11 pounder as well.
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Old 08-11-2017, 08:02 PM   #10
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Another vote for USELESS ! From a voter with experience.
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Old 08-11-2017, 08:22 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Minimalist View Post
I pour hot water down the side of the tank and then run my finger up the side, bottom to top. Where my finger gets hot, that's the propane level...

I'm using an 11 pounder as well.
Dude! I'm all in on that. Can't wait to impress my fellow campers. Thank you!!!
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Old 08-11-2017, 09:05 PM   #12
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you got two tanks.....

and a small trailer....

FWIW...the way I "handle" the situation.....I only have one tank "on"...the second one is full and shut off...it also has a "tell tale" on it reminding me that it is FULL and off.....when I run out of gas....I shut the first one off, turn the second on on...and remove its "tell tale".....now I have a week to think about filling the empty one.... and when I do this, I put the "tell tale" on it...

if this system ever fails me one day and I run out of gas completely one night....what's the big deal?....it's called "camping" right?

don't sweat the small stuff...carry on...
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Old 08-11-2017, 09:38 PM   #13
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Franswa, Grumman Goose on patrol?
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Old 08-11-2017, 10:01 PM   #14
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I paid for two tanks and auto switch-over so I'm going to take advantage of that feature.
Both tanks are turned on. The lever points to the tank in use. If that tank runs dry in the middle of the night in the pouring rain and wind, I'm automatically switched to the full tank and my furnace continues to run.
I turn the lever to the full tank ( which is already in use ) and I remove the empty tank and take it to be filled.
Before I go camping, and from time to time, I check the indicator on the switch-over. If the top shows red, I know that I have a dry tank. Bottom is green, indicating that I have 20 lbs of propane in my second tank.
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Old 08-12-2017, 12:16 AM   #15
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Gauges for propane tanks.

I weigh the tank sometimes but my favorite propane gauge now is to pour some hot water over the side of the tank. In a few seconds, steel with propane behind it will be cool and the steel above the propane level will be quite warm.
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Old 08-12-2017, 05:38 AM   #16
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Goose....

yeah, Gooses are still used by one or two small commercial operators flying out of Port Hardy. PH is the "end of the road" on the Island. These operators transport people to logging camps and sportfishing resorts sprinkled all over the central coast (between PH and Prince Rupert)

That spot was/is a great find...used a lot by locals walking their dogs.

Even though I have a healthy distrust of most things "automatic", I'll have to look at one of those switch over deals...
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Old 08-12-2017, 10:05 AM   #17
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I just use one tank till it is emty switch tanks then fill it soon as i find propane .this way you have the second tank. when i use i single tank.i have a 5lb tant as a spare.works for me. Happy Trails
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Old 08-12-2017, 10:31 AM   #18
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The LCD strip seems like a simple, inexpensive solution, but how does pouring hot water over the strip tell you the amount of propane left in the tank? Thanks.
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Old 08-12-2017, 11:11 AM   #19
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tank guages

the strip type when you put hot water on them the temp differnce produces a frost line that the strip pickes up .those other gauges havent found a use for them yet .Happy Trails
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Old 08-12-2017, 11:18 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by floyd View Post
We have the only type that works and that's an actual float gauge. Ours has a separate port on the tank but the new ones have an actual float gauge built into the main valve.
I have 2 tanks with the float gauge. They help give me a heads up when the tank gets low but there is still a lot of propane left when the gauge reads empty.
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