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Old 12-11-2012, 10:08 AM   #1
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Propane Switches/Monitors

We have recently moved into a Redwood 36FB. We have dual, 30 lb propane tanks; both filled when we took possession. As the weather turns colder and we used more propane and ran out this morning (burrr).

I'd been watching the indicator (black vs red) and it seemed to turn over night.

The switch has an arrow on it. Turn it to the left and it uses the left propane tank. Turn it to the right, etc.

This morning, found I was out on tank 1, but the dealer didn't turn on the valve on propane tank 2. I turned it on, turned the switch so it would use the full tank and not only did the furnace not work, the indicator showed the full tank as being empty. Any suggestions?

When I had the first tank refilled the guy (much more experienced with RV's than I) said I should turn the switch down (not right or left) and the system will automaticlaly use one tank, then without manual operation, switch to the other tank. Is that right? Soemone else told me by turning the switch down, it used both tanks and that they'd run out simultaneously; resulting in more down time to refill both tanks. Help?
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Old 12-11-2012, 04:37 PM   #2
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It depends upon the transfer switch. Some can automatically switch to the second tank, and others can't. As for gauges, I haven't found one yet that gives an accurate reading. When I had twin tanks on a TT I'd set it to use one tank. When that one ran dry, I'd manually switch to the other and know that it was time to refill the first.
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Old 12-11-2012, 04:45 PM   #3
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You are seeing normal indicator option.. The indicator only measures pressure (The only thing it can measure) in the regulator "head" (that is the tank side of the regulator)

The switch serves two functions... ONE is optional.

IF both tanks are open then the switch chooses Tank 1, Tank 2 or in some cases both, and the optional feature is if both tanks are open and the valve is set to one or the other, it will allow Propane, at greatly reduced pressure from "The other tank" than the one selected.

So long as there is LIQUID propane in the tank the head pressure is on the order of 100 PSI The regulator output is on the order of 1/2 PSI (NOTE both figures are seriously rounded) I'm not sure what the Reduced pressure is but I'd guess on the order of 10-25 PSI.

Thus the indicator goes from "Full" (GREEN) to Empty (RED) in a matter of minutes, if not seconds.

You really need to find the manuals for the regulator and more importantly the selector valve and read them.

I grew up with propane. Learned most of this stuff back in my "Tweens" that was over half a century ago so memory may be a bit dusty.
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