Propane Upgrade - Fiberglass RV


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Old 04-11-2012, 10:09 PM   #1
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Propane Upgrade

Hi all,
My '84 Scamp came with old style propane tanks which are no longer legally refillable, and I've acquired a new-to-me refillable propane tank. I would like your advice/knowledge on if I need to replace the OEM regulator as well to bring my system all the way into the 21st century.
I bought the camper last fall and used the stove with the old tank and regulator, and things seem to work just fine. I wasn't able to try out the propane on the fridge because, it too is the older Dometic 2201. There's a metal label with instructions permanently attached to the works under the outside hatch where you change the mode on the fridge. Unfortunately, my old eyes and brain weren't able to read the label, then memorize the information long enough to perform the various steps in the task, so I still don't know whether the fridge works with propane.
Once I run out of gas in the old tank, can I simply unscrew the old tank and use the old regulator with the new tank? If not, how expensive is it to replace the regulator? I currently have two tanks (don't know if there's even gas in the other tank), but think I will eliminate one and mount a battery in its place, but that's a whole other set of questions.
Thanks so much for your help/advice/expertise.
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Old 04-11-2012, 11:01 PM   #2
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It's OK to use the old regulator. The new style tanks just have a different valve which has a triangle shape handle. Is there a place near you that does tank exchange, Blue Rhino or Amerigas are a couple of companies that do that. I'm not sure of their exchange policy now, but Blue Rhino was a lease customer where I worked, and they took the old tanks and refitted them with the new valves, updated the inspection dates, and painted them. I've heard that some of their tanks have a valve that makes it so only they can fill them
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Old 04-11-2012, 11:27 PM   #3
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Regulators are cheap if it works no need to change it and they can be bought just about anywhere.
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Old 04-11-2012, 11:28 PM   #4
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Name: Deb & Chuck
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Propane upgrade

The old regulator should be ok but look at the hoses and replace them if you see any cracking. Look at the hose from the regulator to the trailer it may need replacing. When sealing the lines use yellow pipe thread tape. Yellow is for propane.
Chuck
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Old 04-11-2012, 11:46 PM   #5
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Lil,

Does this mean you no longer want a fiberglass tank?

You should be able to tell about how much gas is in the tank by weighing it. Silly me. I had Fred take in a practically full tank to get filled up. Propane guy said, "you want this filled?"

I think it says on the tank the weight of the empty tank.

Nancy
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Old 04-12-2012, 07:14 AM   #6
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Thanks all for your help!
Nancy, I still want a fiberglass tank. Just got a new style tank in exchange for my neighbor taking a very rusted out old trailer off my hands. And besides, I just went out to the garage and lifted the Group 27 battery that I'm going to put on the tongue. That bu**ar is HEAVY! So light tank is good!
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Old 04-12-2012, 08:50 AM   #7
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since you are upgrading, why not get the automatic switch over regulator for dual tanks?
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Old 04-12-2012, 11:59 AM   #8
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yup,,,different fitting on the new tank. so at least the hose from the regulator to the tank has to be replaced.
then when you snap off the fitting on the regulator because its been on there so long,,, replace that too.

lol unless you get lucky and it stays in one piece.
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Old 04-12-2012, 06:41 PM   #9
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The 20 lb. tank on my 82 Scamp is slightly taller than the new exchange tanks,so there may be a need to change the hold down hardware.
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Old 04-13-2012, 01:15 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by john warren View Post
yup,,,different fitting on the new tank. so at least the hose from the regulator to the tank has to be replaced.
then when you snap off the fitting on the regulator because its been on there so long,,, replace that too.

lol unless you get lucky and it stays in one piece.
Not necessarily so; unless the fittings/regulator are damaged, or hoses/lines are cracked, any old style P.O.L. fitting will work with the new style 'Quck Connect' valves. All of the new style valves with the large right-hand outside threads also still have the inner 'left-hand' threads, & the old P.O.L. connectors work just fine. It's easy to tell which tanks have the new style OPD (Overfill Protection Device)valves, they have a triangular shut off knob on top; The old style may have different shaped knobs but none should be triangular (at least in the USA).

Here's pix of an old style tank using an old P.O.L. fitting; then a tank with new style valve showing the inner left-hand threads & the outer right-hand threads; then a new style valve using an old style P.O.L. connector; and finally a new style 'quick connect' on the new style valve - note the triangular knob on the new type valves
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Old 04-13-2012, 01:30 PM   #11
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To further complicate things I'm not sure how the hardware attaches to (through) the the top of fiberglass tanks. I want to use one of the bypass things so I can use hose to BBQ. Read somewhere where the fiberglass was modified (trimmed) to accept hardware.

Lil, The weather gods are not helping me get to TN.

Nancy
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Old 04-13-2012, 06:14 PM   #12
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Nancy, I'll start praying.

Well, I know the local lumber yard fills propane tanks. They filled my little 5# tank for me. If I haven't figured this out, I'll take it over there in ten days (I have an eight-day event at my shop and then a wrap-up meeting) and see if they can help figure out what I need to do convert the system...safely.

Things are always more complicated than I think they'll be.

Thank you all for your help.
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Old 04-13-2012, 10:28 PM   #13
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Lil,

I just went back to the web site and they now have a new molded top that has the open area. If I get down there I will call before I go out of my way to confirm price. Would hate to get there and then.....

Here we are looking at cold and maybe snow. And down there it will be pushing 80. I don't do heat. Can't scoot down the west side of this stormy stuff as we have to go to Duluth and then down WI.

We heat home with propane. Cenex tops off our 20 lb tank. I'll find out our cost for 20 lb if I get these things up here.

Nancy
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Old 04-14-2012, 01:35 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lil M. View Post
I wasn't able to try out the propane on the fridge because, it too is the older Dometic 2201. There's a metal label with instructions permanently attached to the works under the outside hatch where you change the mode on the fridge. Unfortunately, my old eyes and brain weren't able to read the label, then memorize the information long enough to perform the various steps in the task, so I still don't know whether the fridge works with propane.
On the home page here there is a Document center where you will find a manual for the Dometic 2201 fridge.
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