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Author Topic: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions  (Read 11385 times)

ChrisK

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New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« on: December 14, 2012, 04:28:17 PM »
Hello all,
I looked to see if this question was answered, but as I am very new to RV's I do not
know all of the lingo to even type in the right terms to get my answer.
I am living in a 26 ft Class C Sunseeker ( On a Ford Chassis ) and I don't know how long
my 35lbs of propane will last, but I am sure it wont last long. My RV runs just fine, but as I am
 not traveling at all, I would like to get around having to drive to a fill up station when its time to refill
my on board LP tank. I am on a ranch in Northern California ( Above Sacramento ). I use my propane for heat, water heater, and stovetop.
Whats my best plan of action here?
Do I try and find a local company that comes to fill me up?
Do I need to buy an "Extended Stay" adapter?
Do I just buy 2 small tanks and fill one up each week?
Thanks in advance for any help!
-Chris
1989 26' Sunseeker C Class on Ford Chasis.
Full Time | Stationary | Newbie

Ned

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #1 on: December 14, 2012, 04:58:38 PM »
You can get an Extend-a-Stay and have a local propane supplier install a 100 gallon tank on your site.  That's the easiest long term solution.  Call the local propane dealers to find one that will handle it for you.

Another option is the Extend-a-Stay and get a couple of large (40 lb) tanks and just fill them as needed.  Rotate them so you always have one full tank.  Keep your onboard tank full in case you run out on the portable tanks and can't get to the refill station quickly.
-- Ned -- Fulltimer 1997-2013
1997 Holiday Rambler Endeavor LE
2007 GMC Canyon

Jeff

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #2 on: December 14, 2012, 05:27:32 PM »
Chris:

You will probably be money ahead to drive every month to refill the propane so that the RV gets exercised. Almost all manufacturures reccommend driving every 30 days until all temps up up to normal operating. Also run the generator if you have one and add a stabilizer to your fuel.

ChrisK

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #3 on: December 14, 2012, 06:24:25 PM »
Thank you both, those were great replies!
It is very possible that a 35lb would need refill more then once per month ( esp. in the winter ), if that is the case then I wouldnt want to make the 1 hour  trip to do that each time... but I will def. make sure and drive til operating temperature monthly ( or so ).
I guess the best thing to do is use my propane "normally" and see how long it lasts? I have only been parked for 1 week and I think my guage is wrong, because it says I have used hardly any at all - but I take a shower every day, run the heater a few hours a day, and cook each night so I figured I should be almost out by now!
If it somehow lasts all month, then driving is the way to go, but if it doesnt, then I will do as earlier suggested ( extended stay + rental tank and fill up ).
I will post back my results for others who run into the same situation.
Thanks!
1989 26' Sunseeker C Class on Ford Chasis.
Full Time | Stationary | Newbie

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #4 on: December 15, 2012, 11:43:37 AM »
Cooking uses almost zero LP and ditto for the fridge if on propane.  The water heater doesn't use a lot either, but the furnace can suck in a bunch if it runs a lot.

The fixed LP tank in a motorhome is usually rated in gallons rather than lbs (since you can't remove it to weigh anyway). If you have a 35 gallon tank, it should last a couple months.  The gallon rating is in water capacity, and the LP capacity is 80% of that or 28 gallons of LP. That's the equivalent of 6 or 7 of the common BBQ size (20 lb) bottles
Gary
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SeilerBird

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #5 on: December 15, 2012, 12:01:22 PM »
I am a single full timer and my propane tank is 20 pounds. It usually lasts me about two months between refills. The last refill I did was after a month and a half and it used 12 gallons. As the other posters have mentioned, propane lasts a long time.
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Ned

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #6 on: December 15, 2012, 12:11:16 PM »
A 35 gallon propane tank on a 26' class C motorhome would be extremely unlikely, but 35 lbs. would be possible.  First you need to find the capacity, either gallons or lbs., then think about your uses.  If you don't need the furnace a lot, then the on board tank may be sufficient, but you'll still have to move the motorhome to get it filled if you can't find a dealer that delivers.  If you expect to stay parked during a cold winter, and don't want to move every week or two, then a external large tank would be a better solution.
-- Ned -- Fulltimer 1997-2013
1997 Holiday Rambler Endeavor LE
2007 GMC Canyon

ChrisK

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #7 on: December 15, 2012, 01:20:31 PM »
I checked my book, it is 35 lbs. Then I checked my gauge, and I am at 1/4 tank  :(
I am certain that the little lady leaves the heater on when I am at work  ;)
Looks like I may be having to drive sooner then I hoped ( serious mud issue out here right now ).
Thanks all!
1989 26' Sunseeker C Class on Ford Chasis.
Full Time | Stationary | Newbie

Evil Santa

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #8 on: December 15, 2012, 01:45:23 PM »
What I did is plumbed in my own extend a stay. I went to the local LP dealer and got all the fittings and had a hose made. Then had them deliver 2-100 pound Tanks. One goes empty hook the other one up then order full one for next time they are delivering in the area. Lots of folks use the 100 pounders for home cooking. So they will deliver if within reason. I'm 20 miles out but still on a regular route.
This is when I'm using the Furnace a lot. Spring and Fall in Northern Minn can be Cold. If not just cooking and water heater don't use much..
Jim in Minn
Jim
2000 Damon Challenger 335
North of Two Harbors Mn.

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #9 on: December 15, 2012, 05:24:09 PM »
35 lbs is only about 7 gallons, not much at all for a rig that size.  Better get that Extend-a-stay plumbed in - it's usually pretty easy - and buy a spare 30# bottle or two.  I put one on a trailer some years ago - took me maybe 30 minutes and a couple open end wrenches. Sometimes there isn't a convenient place to fit it in, though, and then it can get messy.
Gary
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Conquest aka Robert

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #10 on: December 15, 2012, 05:38:04 PM »
Get the extend a stay DON"T go into the mud. I got buried to the axle in my own front yard. Cost 200 bucks for tow.
1996 GulfStream Conquest Ultra 102  04-19-2011.
2009 Honda Ruckus
1984 Southwind for 6 years.
1 Wife
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ChrisK

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #11 on: December 17, 2012, 12:42:05 PM »
Get the extend a stay DON"T go into the mud. I got buried to the axle in my own front yard. Cost 200 bucks for tow.

At least you didn't have far to go to get home :)
1989 26' Sunseeker C Class on Ford Chasis.
Full Time | Stationary | Newbie

Conquest aka Robert

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #12 on: December 17, 2012, 03:59:52 PM »
At least you didn't have far to go to get home :)

You should have seen the tow drivers face when he pulled up and saw 31' of RV. Did I mention it was Saturday night before Easter Sunday about midnight and there were massive thunder storms in the area LOTS of lighting. Took 5 differant repositioning of the tow truck to finally get us on CONCRETE.
1996 GulfStream Conquest Ultra 102  04-19-2011.
2009 Honda Ruckus
1984 Southwind for 6 years.
1 Wife
6 Children who needs pets

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #13 on: December 18, 2012, 09:32:59 AM »
If you had Coach-net, they would have sent a tow truck that was familiar with RVs and made sure he was aware of the type and size of the vehicle.
Gary
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Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

Conquest aka Robert

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #14 on: December 18, 2012, 04:23:43 PM »
This was the bring it home new to me RV. Before I found ALL the helpful folks here on the forum ;D.  Now I ask first before doing STUPID things ::) The driver knew what he was in for it was just the shock of seeing something that big stuck in a front yard. I am 31' with tag axle and very tall. I still have mud fall off every once in awhile. I have sprayed the bottom several times!
1996 GulfStream Conquest Ultra 102  04-19-2011.
2009 Honda Ruckus
1984 Southwind for 6 years.
1 Wife
6 Children who needs pets

Jeff

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #15 on: December 18, 2012, 04:30:39 PM »
If you had Coach-net, they would have sent a tow truck that was familiar with RVs and made sure he was aware of the type and size of the vehicle.


Gary:


Unfortunately the service CoachNet sent out of San Antonio wanted to pick up my IFS front end with axle forks after I was quite explicit about the IFS. Sue got a kick out of the driver trying to convince me he could pick it up without damage.


Two hours later the truck with tire cradles showed up.
« Last Edit: December 18, 2012, 04:34:12 PM by Jeff »

ChrisK

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #16 on: December 19, 2012, 01:06:26 PM »
Ok, after looking into it, it is very expensive to have my propane brought to me by a service. They charge a rental fee for the tank, and they cost of propane is very pricey also. So, that option is out for me.

Driving the RV to the station to fill up wont work either - I use too much propane, and would have to drive it weekly during these cold months. That would be a 3 hour ordeal, and I am not willing to give up 3 hours of each Saturday to do that, not too mention the cost of fuel to drive that far each time. Did I mention I live way out in the  middle of nowhere? :)

So I am down to the two tank method. I will run on my main tank until its done, and then hook up my secondary tank until I refill the first.
I bought a 20# ( this will be my secondary tank ) and on payday will be buying a 60# ( this will be my main tank ). I think I can make it about a month on 60#.

My confusion is over the Extend-a-stay.
Why do I need this device? Why wouldnt I just hook up directly to my regulator? Is it a safety issue that I dont
know about, or a convenience thing?

Thanks for reading this long post, hoping someone knows the answer!
1989 26' Sunseeker C Class on Ford Chasis.
Full Time | Stationary | Newbie

NY_Dutch

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #17 on: December 19, 2012, 01:13:59 PM »
With the Extend-A-Stay, you would run on the external cylinder, leaving the main tank as the backup that gets used while the external cylinder is being refilled. There would be no need to switch anything around, just close the external cylinder valve and open the main tank valve, and then disconnect the hose from the external cylinder.
Dutch
2001 GBM Landau 34' Class A
F53 Chassis, Triton V10, TST TPMS
2011 Toyota RAV4 4WD/Remco pump
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ChrisK

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #18 on: December 19, 2012, 01:26:32 PM »
With the Extend-A-Stay, you would run on the external cylinder, leaving the main tank as the backup that gets used while the external cylinder is being refilled. There would be no need to switch anything around, just close the external cylinder valve and open the main tank valve, and then disconnect the hose from the external cylinder.

That makes sense, but I can hook up without it ( I can buy one after Christmas, but will need to hook up my propane tank before I can afford one. ).

I saw Evil Santa ( posted above ) had made his own, I like that idea but I dont know anything about propane or fittings or anything so I should just buy one that I know is made out of the right stuff.

Thanks!
1989 26' Sunseeker C Class on Ford Chasis.
Full Time | Stationary | Newbie

ChrisK

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #19 on: December 21, 2012, 10:59:50 PM »
Well, that did not work.
A regular propane hose will NOT hook my 20# tank to my RV, and
my onboard tank just ran out.
Looks like Im in for a cold night with no shower in the morning...
I will post whatever combination of hoses/fittings I come up with to make this work, in the morning when the hardware store is open.
Unless I can make it out to the nearest camping world ( if they stock the "stay-a-while ).
At least the world didnt come to end today, lol.

1989 26' Sunseeker C Class on Ford Chasis.
Full Time | Stationary | Newbie

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #20 on: December 22, 2012, 09:16:35 AM »
Not sure what you mean by a "regular propane hose", or what you were trying to connect it to on your RV.  There is no place on most RVs that would accept a hose designed for a BBQ or heater, though.  You could probably disconnect the fixed tank from the regulator and plumb in a hose from a portable LP bottle instead, but you would need a hose made for that purpose, with a suitable fitting on the end going to the regulator.  The Extend-a-stay also requires a hose designed for that purpose, but the retail Extend-a-stay kit comes with it, and some RV or hardware stores stock that type of hose for retail sale.
Gary
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Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

ChrisK

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #21 on: December 22, 2012, 04:55:27 PM »
Thanks Gary, I was using a coleman propane hose to hook my 20# directly up to my regulator.
I didnt want to spend $100 for a "stay-a-while" as I wont ever be using my onboard tank again ( I dont travel, Im stationary ) and just wanted to bypass it altogether. However, Home depot, Osh, Ace, and Harris' Industrial Gasses all told me that the kit ( stay-a-while ) at campingworld was the only way to hook up a 20# to an RV. I think that there is another way, a custom hose, or home made fitting combo... but I couldnt go on with no propane. I went and bought it at camping world and spent an hour putting it on ( mine wasnt a 10 min install, had to remove and reroute and bend some hoses underneath ) and now I have LP again :)
1989 26' Sunseeker C Class on Ford Chasis.
Full Time | Stationary | Newbie

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #22 on: December 23, 2012, 12:11:26 PM »
I've had a couple LP hoses built to do what I wanted - it's often the most straight-forward solution. Some gas companies won't make or modify them due to liability issues in this lawsuit-happy era, but away from the metropolitan areas there is nearly always somebody who makes custom Lp hoses.
Gary
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jmugs

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Re: New Stationary Full Timer Long Term Propane Tank Questions
« Reply #23 on: December 25, 2012, 09:33:02 AM »
We are stationary for winter. Since weather isn't usually an issue in S. Az, we cook outdoors on campstove and grill a lot. Propane is mostly used for showers for 2. We use small ceramic heaters and only need the second heater one morning so far. You might consider them.

I installed an extended stay and use one 20# aux tank as there is a fill place a mile away. Showering takes little gas. I turn it on, and shut it off after DW is finished and there is plenty hot water for me still in the tank since we do military showers. When I'm done there's still warm water for morning dishes.
Hint...heat water for dishes in the microwave when LP is off.
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