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Old 01-16-2021, 06:40 PM   #1
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Propane leak discovered

I recently drove back to Florida after putting my boat to bed in Rocky Point. It was an interesting trip but since I was solo I did more night driving than I normally would. (I've already ordered new headlights!) Anyway, when I parked the coach in the driveway and climbed off the first comment by the DW was "you have a propane leak". I walked down the passenger side of the coach and sure enough it was unmistakable. I shut off the propane, that was 3 weeks ago.

So today I finally started looking for the leak. I grabbed a spray bottle and turned on the propane and sprayed everything under the coach that was propane related and quickly found a broken 1/2" pipe. You can see in the picture that about a third of the threaded end of the pipe broke off. I image this has been progressively getting worse and the recent trip was the last straw.

I had to replace both the pipe and the tee but not too bad. I'm just glad it was under the coach and not buried inside the cabinetry.
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Old 01-16-2021, 06:57 PM   #2
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Yikes! Looks like it was stretched tight before it broke.
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Old 01-17-2021, 12:07 AM   #3
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Wow! Installed under strain, and 17 years of vibration.
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Old 01-17-2021, 03:17 PM   #4
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Ya , I think the vibration finally got. It.
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Old 01-17-2021, 04:01 PM   #5
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You definitely dodged a bullet on that one! It could have been a disaster!
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Old 01-17-2021, 04:38 PM   #6
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Yow! I'd much rather have a gas (propane, natural) fire than a leak...! Easier to locate, the problem is more readily identified, self-resolving as the fuel source is exhausted; the list can go on...

Yours could've been interesting to watch cruising down the Interstate though...! Glad it all worked out safely...
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Old 01-17-2021, 04:52 PM   #7
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Wonder why the excess flow device didn't shut down the flow.
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Old 01-18-2021, 09:17 PM   #8
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Wonder why the excess flow device didn't shut down the flow.
I don't know of any flow device that limits volume. The regulator limits only pressure.
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Old 01-19-2021, 04:50 PM   #9
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Most propane systems include an "excess flow valve" that is designed to shut down the flow in case of a leak, such as a broken pipe...
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Old 01-20-2021, 09:12 AM   #10
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Wonder why the excess flow device didn't shut down the flow.
Some just reduce the flow to a trickle otherwise it cannot be reset. Once the leak is repaired, the propane through the excess flow device will slowly pressurize the line on the other side of the device and that resets the device.

That's why turning the propane tank valve off, waiting a moment, and slowly turning it on can also reset the device if the leak has been repaired.

We had similar devices on jet oxygen systems and that's how they worked. If a line got severed in an accident the excess flow device cut the flow off from the oxygen tanks so there would not be an oxygen-fed fire. It was totally mechanical and worked off the pressure differential between one side of the device and the other.

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Old 01-21-2021, 07:42 AM   #11
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Like I said, I don't know of any such device on my coach. The plumbing goes from tank to regulator to shutoff solenoid to 1/2 inch distribution pipe. The appliances are plumbed with 3/8" copper that penetrates the floor to connect to the pipe under the coach. Maybe an updated coach is more sophisticated.
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Old 01-21-2021, 07:46 AM   #12
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That’s not a leak, that’s a “main break”!!! Holy cow, glad your wife is an excellent sniffer!
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Old 01-21-2021, 08:32 AM   #13
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Like I said, I don't know of any such device on my coach.
The excess flow valve is part of the service valve, in both DOT cylinders and ASME tanks. Here's a page from Manchester Tank with a description.

https://www.mantank.com/products/rv-...s-accessories/

You can't see the flow limiter, as it's built into the valve. And it would explain why the tank didn't empty itself through the regulator at a scary rate.
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Old 01-21-2021, 10:03 AM   #14
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If you had any propane left in the tank, when you found the leak, the excess flow device is why.
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