Propane tank Level? - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 12-19-2005, 10:41 PM   #15
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My tank only runs out when Fred is around...

Twice now!
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Old 12-20-2005, 09:33 AM   #16
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Most of our locals use the standard fee method.
However Costco in our area sells propane refills, at 9.99 per fill up it is about half everyone else's price. Some of the bigger retailers are starting to lower their price, and the exchange system still runs 20.00 a tank
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Old 12-20-2005, 12:06 PM   #17
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Frederick, I can believe that a 20-lb tank holds about five gallons, but I don't understand how that KOA can fill a portable cylinder without using a scale: how do they know when it is correctly filled, if they don't know how much space was in the tank? It's not like a fixed tank on a vehicle with the various fittings to manage filling. Maybe I've misunderstood something here...

I'm all for being charged just for what I get, but it seems to me like that means using a scale and charging by weight added.
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Old 12-20-2005, 02:28 PM   #18
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you might do a search on ODP valves
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Old 12-20-2005, 02:57 PM   #19
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The "NEW" tanks have a valve inside that prevents overfill.

The "OLD" tanks are not to be used any more.
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Old 12-20-2005, 02:58 PM   #20
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Quote:
but I don't understand how that KOA can fill a portable cylinder without using a scale: how do they know when it is correctly filled,
Where I purchase propane, there's a gauge on the nozzle...tells them how many pounds are flowing and has auto-shut off too.
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Old 12-20-2005, 03:13 PM   #21
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Didn't find anything on ODP valves, so I'm guessing you mean OPD, Nick. According to everything I've read on these Overfill Protection Devices, they are a backup safety measure, not a substitute for monitoring the weight of the cylinder. I'm referring to web sites such as that of the Propane Education & Research Council, which says

Perhaps Frederick's KOA is depending on the OPD, but that doesn't sound like a good idea to me; maybe I still don't understand what they are doing or what an OPD is for.

Donna, I don't see how a propane fill nozzle can shut off automaticallly (like a gasoline pump nozzle does), since the tank is supposed to have about 20% empty space left; could your station be depending on the OPD in the tank as well?
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Old 12-20-2005, 03:16 PM   #22
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Darwin, I realize that in many places the "new" OPD is required, but my understanding is that this is a backup safety device, not a way to normally determine when to stop filling. By the way, the OPD is not required here in Alberta, and new tanks are readily available without one.
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Old 12-20-2005, 04:36 PM   #23
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Darwin, I realize that in many places the "new" OPD is required, but my understanding is that this is a backup safety device, not a way to normally determine when to stop filling. By the way, the OPD is not required here in Alberta, and new tanks are readily available without one.
The OPD is a law enacted for consumer protection in the United States by the National Fire Protection Association...look out, from what I understand it's coming to Canada shortly (CMA). [b]OPD stands for [b]Overfilling [b]Protection [b]Device...it will NOT allow a propane tank to be overfilled.

This is from the National Fire Protection Association's website:
Quote:
Which cylinders must have an overfilling prevention device (OPD)? When must they be installed?
The OPD, a new safety device required in the 1998 edition of NFPA 58 must be installed in all cylinders of 4 – 40 pounds propane capacity. The OPD must be installed in all new cylinders manufactured after September 30, 1998. Other cylinders must have an OPD installed when the cylinder is requalified. Cylinders requiring an OPD can not be filled until one is installed, but the can continue to be used until empty. Refer to 2-3.1.5 for the complete requirements
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Old 12-20-2005, 05:30 PM   #24
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Frederick, I can believe that a 20-lb tank holds about five gallons, but I don't understand how that KOA can fill a portable cylinder without using a scale: how do they know when it is correctly filled, if they don't know how much space was in the tank? It's not like a fixed tank on a vehicle with the various fittings to manage filling. Maybe I've misunderstood something here...

I'm all for being charged just for what I get, but it seems to me like that means using a scale and charging by weight added.
Brian B-P,

The way it works here is that the [b]80% bleed valve is opened during filling, when it starts to vent liquid instead of gas, the tank is full (to 80%). The pump usually has a meter measuring gallons dispensed. Some places without the meter still use a platform balance scale.

I went to one place where the person did not open the [b]80% bleed valve, he depended on the OPD valve. That's not good practice because the bottle can be overpressurized.

Some or none of this may apply in Canada or in any particular province.
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Old 12-20-2005, 05:50 PM   #25
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Thanks Morgan. Very well said.
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Old 12-20-2005, 06:06 PM   #26
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Quote:
Brian B-P,

The way it works here is that the [b]80% bleed valve is opened during filling, when it starts to vent liquid instead of gas, the tank is full (to 80%). The pump usually has a meter measuring gallons dispensed.
That's how Greater San Diego KOA is doing it.
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Old 12-20-2005, 08:16 PM   #27
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Ah, so there is a bleed valve connected to a dip tube leading to the 80% full level -- thanks Morgan, now I understand how these fill stations are determining appropriate level, and I know what to look if someone is filling my cylinders without using a scale. I assume this is just like fixed tanks in vehicles, which is what I meant by "various fittings" on the tank.

I hope Donna's supplier is really using the bleed valve to determine the shutoff.
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Old 12-20-2005, 09:09 PM   #28
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Brian B-P,
Natural gas is not available in the mountains where we live. So when our 298 gallon propane tank is filled, the same method Morgan described is used. There is a bleeder on the fill nozzle and also one on the tank. Between the two of them it would almost be impossible to ignore the spewing liquid propane. The reason for allowing the 20% "air space" is to provide expansion room in case the ambient temperature should rise after the tank has been filled. The volume of liquid propane expands considerably when the temperature rises. I've had it expand so much that the pressure relief valve on the tank opened and the escaping fuel stunk up the entire neighborhood. Not supposed to happen and cost per gallon is close to that of gasoline,but with a sufficient increase in temperature Fortunately it didn't leak for more than a few moments.
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