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Author Topic: Propane Leak  (Read 458 times)

winona

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Propane Leak
« on: December 28, 2017, 08:25:06 PM »
I think I have a propane leak.

First off, my motorhome is parked in the driveway, maybe 10 feet from my attached garage.

For the last 2 days with our recent very cold snap, I've smelled propane around the front of my Trend.  Couldn't tell at first if it was my natural (house) gas or the propane.  Not enough to knock your socks off, but certainly enough that I could catch the whiff of it.   Checked the propane level inside at One Place, and at first it registered 1/2 then 1/4 then finally E, all in about 2 seconds on the panel.  The tank was filled in November when it was winterized, so I'm guessing (??) the leak is propane and not the line for the gas into my house.

Questions!  Does the additive for propane differ from the smell of natural gas?   Do I need to also call my local utility?

What do I do?  Today I called my RV repair and left a message.  Just let it continue to slowly leak till it truly is E?

If I need to take it in sooner rather than later, is it safe to start the engine?

Or should I call a mobile RV or propane dealer to come here?
Winnebago Trend
Dorothy and Bailey, my big loveable lab

Ranger smith

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Re: Propane Leak
« Reply #1 on: December 28, 2017, 08:34:27 PM »
There should be a shut off valve right at the tank on the RV . . . Shut it off.
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2012 Winnebago Tour 42JD . . . 2014 Lincoln MKX Toad
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Ranger smith

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Re: Propane Leak
« Reply #2 on: December 28, 2017, 08:36:26 PM »
Also look at guage on tank itself see what it shows
Where We Are Now

Amateur Radio Operator WW1SS Flex 6400 & Maestro
Steve and Joy
2012 Winnebago Tour 42JD . . . 2014 Lincoln MKX Toad
Cooper ... The Doodle, Yogi...The Yorkie, Cookie ... The Chihuahua

Memtb

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Re: Propane Leak
« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2017, 08:47:04 AM »
    Both gases, propane and methane (natural gas) are odorless!  Mercaptan is added as an odorizer, so if a leak occurs....it can be detected.

     Initially assume the MH, close valve at tank. If odor is still (after a reasonable time to disperse) there, call your utility company.

     Do not start the unit, until smell has gone, you could be within the LEL and the UEL. If so...any spark in the area between the two concentration levels will ignite the fuel!
« Last Edit: December 29, 2017, 12:49:30 PM by Memtb »
Todd and Marianne
Home Base: Winchester, Wy.
Miniature Schnauzers - Sundai, Nellie and Maggie Mae
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2004 Teton Grand Freedom
2007 Bigfoot Class C

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Propane Leak
« Reply #4 on: December 29, 2017, 08:58:36 AM »
1. Shut off the valve at the tank, whether a motorhome fixed tank or portable bottle(s) on a trailer.
2. Don't panic - propane leaks in open air outdoors are not a huge risk. Avoid any sparks or flames, of course, but it's not a bomb or suffocation risk when outside.

You said around the FRONT of the Trend, an unusual place for any propane lines or tanks. Are you sure it is propane?  The "rotten egg" smell of the Mercaptan used in LP gas is not unique - there are other things that smell very much the same. An overheated battery is one such.
Gary
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Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

garyb1st

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Re: Propane Leak
« Reply #5 on: December 29, 2017, 09:48:15 AM »
FWIW, I have a leak in my propane tank.  It's the plug the propane gauge is connected to.  Turning off the gas will not effect the leak.  The fix is to replace the plug.   
Gary B1st

2005 Pace Arrow 35G
2016 Jeep Wrangler


Poverty exists not because we cannot feed the poor, but because we cannot satisfy the rich.

skydivemark

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Re: Propane Leak
« Reply #6 on: December 29, 2017, 11:22:36 AM »
Our previous C class had a leak. We could smell it after stationary for awhile. I found a line had rubbed against the frame. I spliced in (silver solder) a new section and wrapped a piece of old garden hose around it to prevent future rubbing/chafing. It was the line going up to the fridge.
Shut off the tank and see if the smell goes away in a fairly short time (30 min-hour). If smell goes away after shutting off the tank then start looking for a rubbed line or a loose connection.
2015 Thor Four Winds 31L
Clermont, FL

Utclmjmpr

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Re: Propane Leak
« Reply #7 on: December 31, 2017, 03:44:13 PM »
Water,,dish soap,,and squirt bottle >>>Dan
38' American Tradition 38TT/330 turbo Cummins
Jeep liberty 4 down
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Cedar City, Utah
USAF vet. 59-63
The difference between intelligence & stupidity is: intelligence has it's limits
      Albert Einstein.

garyb1st

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Re: Propane Leak
« Reply #8 on: December 31, 2017, 04:04:00 PM »
Water,,dish soap,,and squirt bottle >>>Dan

True, but if you're not spraying the liquid on the leak, you won't get bubbles.  That's what happened in our case.  The logical approach is to check for leaks at the most likely source, the regulator and the connections to and from it.  In our case, the leak was from the plug the gauge attaches to. 
Gary B1st

2005 Pace Arrow 35G
2016 Jeep Wrangler


Poverty exists not because we cannot feed the poor, but because we cannot satisfy the rich.