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Old 01-27-2014, 12:21 PM   #1
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I know this is probably a dumb question, but I can't seem to find an answer.

HOW in the world do I walk out to my camper and tell if the propane tanks (2) are full, 1/2 full, low, or out.
I just feel I should know this BEFORE we take it out and run out somewhere in the middle of nowhere.
It would sure be easy if there was some sort of gauge on the sides of the tanks or something.

Dean, Kim & Toby-the CairnTerrier
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2011 Chevy Silverado
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Old 01-27-2014, 12:42 PM   #2
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You can purchase a gauge for the tanks. The gauge will screw onto the tank and then to the outlet hose.

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Old 01-27-2014, 12:46 PM   #3
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If you do not have a monitor test panel inside that monitors fresh water, waste, LP, etc, then check the LP tank for a gauge. If you have portable LP bottles, you can purchase install simple gauges to them. Search Results forÂ*LP gaugeÂ*at The Home Depot
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Old 01-27-2014, 01:12 PM   #4
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I have gauges for water, but not LP. Thanks!! I'll look for ones to attach to my tanks!
Dean, Kim & Toby-the CairnTerrier
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2011 Chevy Silverado
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Old 01-27-2014, 01:15 PM   #5
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Some tap the tank to determine level.
2000 HR Endeavor, 3126 CAT, Freightliner, "The Highway Hilton" pulling a BMW.
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Old 01-27-2014, 01:21 PM   #6
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You weigh it to be sure.

Is this a trailer? If so, you have an auto change over regulator. There is a pointer and if the tank you are pointed to makes a green bubble appear, it has pressure. If red, no pressure.
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Old 01-27-2014, 03:00 PM   #7
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Pour hot water down the side of the tank. Touch the tank where the water is and run your fingers slowly down. When the tank gets cool, that is where the gas starts in the tank. It costs nothing and guaranteed to wok reliably ever time.
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Old 01-27-2014, 03:19 PM   #8
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Even more accurate than the hot water tip described above, is weighing the cylinder. I have a "30 pound" portable tank which I use on my motor home to conserve the internal tank. I use one of these Digital Luggage Scale: Other Home : Walmart.com to weigh it. Among the numbers stamped on top of the cylinder is "TW" which is the Tare Weight or empty weight of the cylinder. My cylinder weighs 23.8 pounds empty and holds 30 pounds of propane when full, so 53.8 pounds is a full cylinder. I take the scale with me when I get the cylinder filled and check it for a good fill every time.
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Old 01-27-2014, 03:33 PM   #9
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Class A.. Open the door and look at the gauge

Class C.. may also have a gauge... Or not.

Trailer with removable tanks... Lift them, the heavier one is usually full.

Get a magnetic LCD indicator strip at any RV or Fireplace / grill store (Outdoor dept at super store included) and stick it on, USE propane to heat a pan of water to boiling and pour over strip. where the color changes is your answer.
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Old 01-27-2014, 03:39 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by DreaminBig View Post
I have gauges for water, but not LP. Thanks!! I'll look for ones to attach to my tanks!
The only close-to-accurate gauges for propane are float-type gauges. See this link.
That's because the propane in your tanks is liquid in a pressurized container. Because pressure fluctuates for lots of reasons, hose-add-on pressure gauges are notoriously inaccurate. In some cases the internals of those gauges can actually interfere with fuel delivery.

I have a trailer, too, and found this out the hard way, FYI.

Weighing is the most accurate means of determining what's in the tank, but the next-best, no-lifting-necessary method is the hot water one described above. Many folks just rely on their own eyes to judge the temp changes, but I went whole-hog and paid six bucks for this handy-dandy magnetic strip that you stick on the side of the tank. Link to product Also available at just about any RV supply store.

Just pour hot water on it and it changes color where the fuel level stops.

Mine's worked great for five years now!


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