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Old 09-05-2014, 09:45 PM   #1
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Swapping empty propane tanks for full ones

I have searched the forums for this topic and cannot locate any information, so please excuse me if this has already been discussed. I am curious about swapping out empty propane tanks for full ones. If I have say Blue Rhino 25 pound tanks and there is no Blue Rhino tank dealer near by will the seller of another brand take my tanks in exchange for his brand? or will I have to buy His brand and then have 2 empty tanks to store along with the new full one? I use the small tanks on our propane BBQ.
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Old 09-05-2014, 09:49 PM   #2
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he should take them ,they do in ct
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Old 09-05-2014, 11:13 PM   #3
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Be careful, Rhino, and American gas will swap your tanks, but only give you back 10 or 15 pounds of propane in the 20 pound tank. They do not give you a full 20 pound tank.

Absolute crime!

Sheff
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Old 09-05-2014, 11:18 PM   #4
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Be careful, Rhino, and American gas will swap your tanks, but only give you back 10 or 15 pounds of propane in the 20 pound tank. They do not give you a full 20 pound tank.

Absolute crime!

Sheff
It DOES sound like a crime. I think it's called fraud in all 50 states.

If the tank capacity is 25 lbs and they can only legally be filled to 80% of that, it seems to me that one should expect 20 lbs of propane when paying for these exchanges.

Are there no weights and measures enforcement in your state? How do you know you're getting a gallon of fuel when you pay for it?

Rick
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Old 09-06-2014, 12:25 AM   #5
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If the tank capacity is 25 lbs and they can only legally be filled to 80% of that, it seems to me that one should expect 20 lbs of propane when paying for these exchanges.
Rick
They are 20 pound tanks, not 25, and hold 20 pounds of propane when filled to 80% of their water capacity. You'll find the water capacity stamped on the outside of the cylinder, preceded by the letters WC. 20 pounds of propane is 4.7 gallons, but people routinely refer to them as 5 gallon tanks.

I just looked at a Rhino display yesterday at a Safeway store, and they very clearly display that they have 15 pounds of propane in them and the exchange price was $19.99. That is 3.53 gallons of propane for $19.99; or $5.66 per gallon. Right next door there is an RV park that sells bulk propane for less than $3 per gallon. I can't believe that people actually buy the Rhino propane tanks.

Where is the "crime" you people are talking about? Rhino tells you right up front what you're getting for the money you pay. It's not a secret, and it's not concealed. You're getting a 20# tank with 15# of propane in it. It's kind of like going to a movie theater and paying $3.00 for the candy bar you can get at the grocery store for 90 cents. You're getting ripped off, but it's not a crime, and you're doing it voluntarily. It might be a good option if you are in a situation where you desperately need some propane, but for regular purchases you're much better off buying bulk.
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Old 09-06-2014, 12:50 AM   #6
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You're far, far better off finding a refilling station. Cheaper, you'll usually get more propane than exchanging, they'll check your tanks for leaks or issues instead of you getting a tank of unknown age and history.
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Old 09-06-2014, 12:57 AM   #7
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I got a Rhino tank from a friend and when I went to fill it along with my other tanks and the MH tank,they told me that they couldn't fill it because it was out of date. They told me to take it in and get a full tank from a place that has the rhino service and make sure that I got a new one. Did so and they never even looked at the one I took in. Pretty good deal a new tank and propane for 19.99.
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Old 09-06-2014, 02:30 AM   #8
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Thanks to all for your replies, I will get me two tanks and do my best to find places that can refill them.
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Old 09-06-2014, 04:56 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by RickO View Post
It DOES sound like a crime. I think it's called fraud in all 50 states.

If the tank capacity is 25 lbs and they can only legally be filled to 80% of that, it seems to me that one should expect 20 lbs of propane when paying for these exchanges.

Are there no weights and measures enforcement in your state? How do you know you're getting a gallon of fuel when you pay for it?

Rick

Too funny ... and there are 50 states? ... I gotta' watch the news more often.
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Old 09-06-2014, 05:04 PM   #10
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I get my BBQ tanks filled at a local marina about a mile from home. A 25-lb tank filled from empty is about $18. Swapping one of the rip-off merchants empty tanks for a "full" one is $25. No brainer for me
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Old 09-06-2014, 05:16 PM   #11
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I was at Costco the other day buying new tires for my new fifth wheel. They were getting something like $10.87 for a refill of your propane tank. That's the lowest price around.

Second lowest is Walmart in our town--where you pickup one of their tanks.

I usually just get my propane at our Georgia Mountain campground.
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Old 09-06-2014, 06:39 PM   #12
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It DOES sound like a crime. I think it's called fraud in all 50 states.

Actually.. It is not fraud at all.. But I will give you some other info.

First: I recently visited a tank swap place... I was not buying or swapping but I did read the signs which vere very clear as to how much propane was in the tank.. At least, very clear to me

It very clearly stated the volume (in gallons) of propane in the tank.


Second: At one time Blue Rino did someting different (And yes I do know what) so that their swappable tanks could not be refilld by other companies.... Now, today most everyone knows how to refill those bottles, but ... you may run into a 3-tier price deal

Lowest price: Bring us one of our empties take home a "full"
Middle price: Bring us someone elses' empty, take home a "Full"
Highest price: Buy a tank of propane.
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Old 09-08-2014, 09:03 AM   #13
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There was a time when I took the empties to a refill station, but between the hassle of waiting for someone to come out and fill the tanks, especially those mini mart type stores with only one clerk on duty, and some places having a minimum charge for refill, I stocked up on tanks through garage sales and switched over to getting the prefilled tanks at Lowes Home Stores. Then it dawned on me that the Base Exchange out at Nellis has the same brand and at a better price, so I now do the swap when we go to do our shopping at the Commissary.
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