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Old 01-07-2013, 08:06 PM   #1
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Extenda- Stay question

This being my first winter setting in one place, I decided to install the Extenda Stay propane kit to use an external tank. I HATE having to break everything down to go fill the Moho's internal tank!

My external tank is getting low, but should have enough propane to get through the night. Don't want to wake up at 3am to 35 degrees though.

Question is this:

If I open the valve on the internal tank as well as the external tank...which tank will the system draw from first? Or will it draw from both? I can't find info on this anywhere.

This is the system that I've installed:

EXTEND-A-STAY PROPANE KIT - DELUXE WITH ADDITIONAL 12' EXTEND-A-FLOW HOSE
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Old 01-07-2013, 09:45 PM   #2
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The valve on the tank has a check valve or is one way only. Propane from the portable tank will not enter the MH tank.
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Old 01-07-2013, 10:09 PM   #3
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Your concern in this department is unclear to me unless you fear that there's some kind of backflow potential that would cause propane to flow into one tank or another instead of firing your heater...as already stated, this won't happen. Propane will follow the path of least resistance which in your case is wherever you've got a flame going.

If you open both valves, the system will draw from both equally unless one has a bigger orifice than the other. In that case it'll empty the bigger orifice-attached tank first, followed by the second until both are empty.
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Old 01-07-2013, 10:12 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerdmoore View Post
If I open the valve on the internal tank as well as the external tank...which tank will the system draw from first? Or will it draw from both? I can't find info on this anywhere.
If both valves are open then the internal tank will drain down first. When it is almost empty the pressure will be low enough that the one way valve on the extend a stay can open and gas will start flowing from the external tank to the regulator. There is a second one way valve that prevents gas from the external tank flowing back into the internal tank. The best way to use an extend a stay is to start with the internal tank full and its valve closed. Use the external tank only and just turn on the internal tank valve to provide gas while the external tank is disconnected for filling. We've been running with this system in a volunteer campground for 3 months now so I know how the system works.
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Old 01-07-2013, 10:14 PM   #5
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If you open both valves, the system will draw from both equally unless one has a bigger orifice than the other. In that case it'll empty the bigger orifice-attached tank first, followed by the second until both are empty.
Wrong. Orifice size has nothing to do with which tank drains first. Both tanks will not drain equally, see my previous post.
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Old 01-07-2013, 10:34 PM   #6
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Hats off to your superior experience, Bruce...

Thanks for the correction!
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Old 01-08-2013, 09:25 AM   #7
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The tank with the higher pressure will supply propane, Alas this can be either tank or both tanks.. What you should do is hook up the portable tank and close the main tank valve. Thus reserving what little is in it for when it's needed.
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Old 01-08-2013, 09:47 AM   #8
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Just a note, we have ours and have used it quiet a bit. I usually shut off the MH tank and feed off of the auxiliary tank, This way it will empty the aux and I have the MH tank as a backup for heat and refridge while taking the aux to be filled. I don't understand why you would leave both tank valves open. This works well for us.
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Old 01-08-2013, 10:08 AM   #9
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If both valves are open then the internal tank will drain down first. When it is almost empty the pressure will be low enough that the one way valve on the extend a stay can open and gas will start flowing from the external tank to the regulator. There is a second one way valve that prevents gas from the external tank flowing back into the internal tank. The best way to use an extend a stay is to start with the internal tank full and its valve closed. Use the external tank only and just turn on the internal tank valve to provide gas while the external tank is disconnected for filling. We've been running with this system in a volunteer campground for 3 months now so I know how the system works.
Same principle I used when I had a truck camper with two tanks. I ALWAYS used the propane from the outside tank first and kept the inner tank for the reserve.

I don't know how big your external tank is but it's probably portable enough to get to the "propane store" easily? As you said, the motorhome, not so easy.
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Old 01-08-2013, 10:56 AM   #10
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Same principle I used when I had a truck camper with two tanks. I ALWAYS used the propane from the outside tank first and kept the inner tank for the reserve.

I don't know how big your external tank is but it's probably portable enough to get to the "propane store" easily? As you said, the motorhome, not so easy.
Actually our external tank is a 120gal tank (90 to fill) so don't take it anywhere. They come to me. At 3.03/gal I'm glad that Fish @ Wildlife foots the bill.😛
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Old 01-08-2013, 02:16 PM   #11
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. At 3.03/gal I'm glad that Fish @ Wildlife foots the bill.😛
You volunteering? Where? We're at Bosque del Apache NWR in New Mexico. They supply us with "100 pound" cylinders. Tare weight is 68 pounds, normal fill takes it to 170. We muscle them on to a truck and drive to the (on site) bulk propane tank. As previous posters have said, we always keep the MH tank valve closed except when the external tank is disconnected for filling or if we accidentally run the external tank empty. The propane we arrived with will last the winter and then some. The Refuge offers loaner hoses if someone doesn't have an extend a stay. These couple directly to the fill valve on the MH tank, and both valves are left open. Downside of this system is that the onboard tank drains first before the check valve in the fill adapter opens so you end up with no reserve.
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Old 01-08-2013, 02:19 PM   #12
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Hats off to your superior experience, Bruce...

Thanks for the correction!
You are welcome Francesca. My background is as a certified Scuba Instructor and also a High Pressure Cylinder Inspector Instructor. I usually deal with high pressure air, but gas is gas and pressure is pressure. The only twist with propane is that it is a liquid that is trying to become a gas at room temperature.
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Old 01-09-2013, 10:34 AM   #13
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You volunteering? Where? We're at Bosque del Apache NWR in New Mexico. They supply us with "100 pound" cylinders. Tare weight is 68 pounds, normal fill takes it to 170. We muscle them on to a truck and drive to the (on site) bulk propane tank. As previous posters have said, we always keep the MH tank valve closed except when the external tank is disconnected for filling or if we accidentally run the external tank empty. The propane we arrived with will last the winter and then some. The Refuge offers loaner hoses if someone doesn't have an extend a stay. These couple directly to the fill valve on the MH tank, and both valves are left open. Downside of this system is that the onboard tank drains first before the check valve in the fill adapter opens so you end up with no reserve.
Bruce,
We are volunteers at Moapa NWR about 60 miles north of Las Vegas. We had a custom made attachment like an extend a stay made at a propane shop near our last assignment in Idaho. It attaches after the on board regulator and includes a 15 ft hose with regulator attached and quick disconnect. F&W has supplied a 120 gal tank that actually only holds about 90 gals and sends the propane supplier to us. Works great for us.

If you happen to know of any dependable volunteer still looking for a position for the rest of the winter they might want to consider here. No stipend but FHU including 50a, city water (a rarity in these desert positions) , septic hook up and propane and an awesome elevated desert view. You are the only host and its open only 3 days/wk. lots of time to go see the area sites. Lowest temp this winter has been 32 with average days 55. NO snow. Very little rain. We have been here since 1 Sept and were supposed to leave Jan1 but problems at our next position postponed leaving. The next host here flaked on them so they were happy to have us continue another month. But we will be leaving the end of Jan.
You or anyone can PM me for additional info and/or pics.
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Old 01-09-2013, 12:15 PM   #14
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Bruce,
We are volunteers at Moapa NWR about 60 miles north of Las Vegas. We had a custom made attachment like an extend a stay made at a propane shop near our last assignment in Idaho. It attaches after the on board regulator and includes a 15 ft hose with regulator attached and quick disconnect. F&W has supplied a 120 gal tank that actually only holds about 90 gals and sends the propane supplier to us. Works great for us.
Terry, Thanks for the info. I will PM you about the volunteer position. Just curious, why did you get the adapter made so it hooks in after the regulator on the MH? My Extend a Stay goes between the tank valve and the regulator, so I don't need an additional regulator.
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