How do i find a VERY slow propane leak? - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-20-2012, 06:59 AM   #15
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How about at the stove valves, could there be a leak there? According to the Uhaul repair manual, they had some kind of modification that was to be made to the system, but I'm not sure why, and I haven't looked to see if ours had been done. You'll have to trace the whole system and check every connection, and there's always the possibility of a line rubbed where it goes through the floor, or damage from a stone off the road.
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Old 03-20-2012, 07:05 AM   #16
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Another very unlikely situation, has your stove been replaced with one that has a pilot light and you didn't notice it. I don't know as if any were made for campers with pilot lights, but it's just a thought.
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Old 03-20-2012, 07:38 AM   #17
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I just went out and looked at our Uhaul stove. Pull off the knobs on yours and use soapy water in that area, and I assume you already have on the supply line to the stove. It's been 25 years since I did propane installations for a heating company, but I recall we had a special grease we used on stove valves that were sticky, and we might have used it if there was a slow leak. We would check for leaks with a manometer, which is a U shaped tube with water in it. It didn't find where a leak was, just showed if there was one.
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Old 03-20-2012, 07:59 AM   #18
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RE: Propane Leaks
As others have also mentioned, the small hole on the bottom of the regulator is where a leak from the diaphram will appear, Turn the regulator upside down on the tank and, with the tank ON, soap that area real well. As slow as your leak is, it might take a few minutes for even one bubble to start.

BTW: I use kids bubble blowing solution for testing, it's easy to find at most Dollar stores. Works a lot better than just soap solution, and you can entertain yourself while waiting for the leak to appear.
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Old 03-20-2012, 08:12 AM   #19
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Thank you for all the great ideas!

I have been fixated on the new gas connections. I'll start looking at the original equipment and the installations the PO did.

And maybe I can borrow a gas detector from someone around here.
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Old 03-20-2012, 10:21 AM   #20
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That would be the one on the tank these are meant to be fully open as they will leak in aNY OTHER PLACE SO WHEN VALVE IS CLOSED ANY GAS IN THE SYSTEM WILL ESCAPE.Also those propane sencers you buy for around 40 bucks are worthless [In my opinion I have one and it wont tell you of a small leak.
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Old 03-20-2012, 10:32 AM   #21
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The gas in the system will escape when the valve is closed!?!

Well then, that is what is happening AND it is an expected occurrence.

So this is a nonissue.

Happy Days!

I am off on a shake down trip over the hill to Half Moon Bay! It is cold for us - mid-50s in the day and high-30s at night. I'll test my new heater and be cooking all my meals. As well as biking and hiking along our beautiful coastline! Maybe tea at the Ritz!
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Old 03-20-2012, 11:55 AM   #22
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If I had everything turned off inside the trailer and the tank turned off and saw the gauge of the tank move as yours has I would not light a match anywhere near that trailer until I figured out why....

I have the same gas gauge on my 20lb tank and have found it takes a fair bit of usage of propane in order to see any amount of movement on the gauge. Under normal camping conditions using the 3 burner stove, hot water tank, furnace and running the fridge off the propane on a daily bases the amount of movement as seen on your gauge would take place over several days or more. Can actually go for a couple of months without refilling the tank if only camping on week-ends.

IMHO you should at least take the tank off the trailer and weigh it to determine if it is in fact leaked gas or if you just have a faulty gauge. If its actually loosing gas, others have given good suggestions as to checking the state of your regulator & tank shut off valve.
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Old 03-20-2012, 12:41 PM   #23
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RE: LP Gauges
I believe that those level gauges are only "Pressure" indicators, meaning that when the tank is full there will be less air space and more pressure. That gauge dropping to "0" when the tank is turned off, only indicates a loss of pressure, and not, perhaps, insignificant volume loss. For that matter, that much pressure could be bleeding off inside the gauge itself. Has anyone actually seem these gauges hold pressure for 24 hours after the tank was turned OFF?
There is a regular "Test Gauge" that Winnebago used to install on their refrigerators some years back to check for leaks with the system OFF. Try capping off the line at the gauge and then run your test again.
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Old 03-20-2012, 12:47 PM   #24
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It won't leak when gas is turned on fully against the top packing . If your tank has a gland nut on the valve stem you may try to snug it up some .DONT WORRY ABOUT IT!!the amount of gas you lose when turned off won't even burn.
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Old 03-20-2012, 02:09 PM   #25
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I like Bob Millers' question "Has anyone actually seen these gauges hold pressure for 24 hours after the tank was turned off?" Is it a normal situation that is causing needless concern? I would soap test everything I could get at, and then not worry about it. Remember, propane is heavier than air, so any that leaks will go down. Bob
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Old 03-20-2012, 03:20 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mouse View Post
I have a small tank:
Attachment 44174
20 pounds I believe.
I think that's a 10 pound tank.

I have 2 of the 20 pound tanks on my Fiber Stream.
Attached Thumbnails
Cambria Rally 020.jpg  
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Old 03-20-2012, 03:40 PM   #27
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Have a gas man attach his check gauge to the system then pressurize the system with all valves off then close the tank valve and have him come back the next day to see if the system leaked.

The gauges on the tank are not good enough to do this. It takes a Very Special, Very Sensitive gauge to do this.
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Old 03-20-2012, 03:41 PM   #28
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Do you watch the program Barely Legal? She had a very small leak in her propane system on her boat last week. She no longer has a boat.
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