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Old 01-23-2012, 08:17 AM   #1
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Propane question

So the winter camping trip is coming up. DW and I were out in the camper (plugged in to the house) over the weekend finishing up some little projects and I had an electric space heater running. It took the edge off the cold (15 degrees here) but it wasn't what I'd call "warm." So I fired up the furnace and got things warm (which I wanted to do before the winter camping trip anyway.) So my question is: anyone have any idea how long a 30# propane bottle is going to last running my furnace? No hot water heater running, but maybe the fridge on propane too (for 1 or two nights.) Just wondering how the gas will last. Thoughts???
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Old 01-23-2012, 08:44 AM   #2
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I picked this up a while back from another RV site, I forgot where or I would give them credit.

There is a way to roughly calculate propane usage. You need to
know how much propane is in your RV when it is full. An RV propane tank is full at 80 percent of its capacity to allow for expansion. Multiply your propane container capacity using one of these formulas, (gallons or pounds), to determine container BTU capacity. BTUs per gallon equal 91,502.BTUs per pound equal 21,548. Divide your container BTU capacity by the total BTU demand of the appliances you are using. BTU appliance demand
can normally be found on the appliance or in the appliance owner's manual.
This will give you an idea of how long you can expect your LP gas to last.
For example, if your RV propane container holds 14 gallons of LP gas when it's full, you multiply 14 X 91,502. The result is 128,1028. You divide this figure by the total BTU demand of appliances, let's say 43,800 BTUs, which gives you approximately 29 hours of use.
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Old 01-23-2012, 09:13 AM   #3
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Winter camping trip at 15 Deg. You are going to use pro.for your Ref.? Are you going to be dry camping? If no generator,your batt.will run down long before the Propane. Youroo!!
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Old 01-23-2012, 09:21 AM   #4
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I have to agree with youroo; the propane tank will outlast your battery if you are dry camping.

Only comparison I have is from my last camping trip of 2011. The warmest it got was about 8 degrees C (46 F) and we had lows both nights below 0. (Mid 20's F) Two nights of camping with hot water and fridge running we used 4 pounds of propane. I bought a scale to measure my tank.

Now keep in mind my trailer is a lot smaller so it takes less to warm it up. But if you factor in using twice as much propane as me; that gives you 7 days on that 30 pound tank.
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Old 01-23-2012, 09:39 AM   #5
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30lb bottle i had to use new years time. ran out on the day before new years and no home delivery was available till the 3rd. in 4 days i went through that bottle using just the furnace to heat. it was also -30c temp.
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Old 01-23-2012, 10:00 AM   #6
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Thanks for the replies everyone. I'll have to take a look at the furnace and see what it's BTU rating is so I can put that handy formula into play. In the meantime, I'm thinking that a nearly full propane tank is going to make it at least one night. I was figuring on the battery being more of an issue and the plan will be to use the large-gauge cable to plug the TT battery into the TV and run it for a while to charge the TT battery with the alternator as needed. I'm thinking this will work for one night. That Yamaha 2400W generator is looking better and better, though...
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Old 01-26-2012, 01:07 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Taranwanderer View Post
Thanks for the replies everyone. I'll have to take a look at the furnace and see what it's BTU rating is so I can put that handy formula into play. In the meantime, I'm thinking that a nearly full propane tank is going to make it at least one night. I was figuring on the battery being more of an issue and the plan will be to use the large-gauge cable to plug the TT battery into the TV and run it for a while to charge the TT battery with the alternator as needed. I'm thinking this will work for one night. That Yamaha 2400W generator is looking better and better, though...
I just noticed that you are thinking about running your (Diesel truck) to charge the trailer battery at night. I bet you will be a big hit to your neighbors! Youroo!!
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Old 01-26-2012, 01:17 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by youroo View Post
I just noticed that you are thinking about running your (Diesel truck) to charge the trailer battery at night. I bet you will be a big hit to your neighbors! Youroo!!
Agreed.

OP - I'm sure others have tried to charge their batteries with their truck, but I'm not sure how successful that's been.
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Old 01-26-2012, 02:00 PM   #9
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We full time camp in BC. Day time highs in mid 40s lows 28 30 lbs propane will last 6 to 7 days.
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Old 01-27-2012, 12:10 AM   #10
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I just noticed that you are thinking about running your (Diesel truck) to charge the trailer battery at night. I bet you will be a big hit to your neighbors! Youroo!!
Couple points here: it would not be running "all night," just a few minutes before everyone turns in. Also, were not in a real campground, it's a dirt parking lot with a wooded edge at an off-road park. It gets pretty rowdy at times and a Cummins at idle will be one of the least noisy things going on! But I get your point, I may just plug into the truck and draw from all 3 batteries, and if they're dead in the AM, have one of my jeeping buddies give me a jump start.
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2015 XLR Hyperlite 30HFS5 (mods being performed regularly)
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Nights- ('12)23 ('13)23 ('14)15 ('15)31 ('16)27 ('17) 20
2016 Ford Fusion Titanium (gulping gas again, camping support vehicle)
2014 Harley Davidson FLHX (XLR cargo)
2011 Ram 2500 CC 4X4 CTD, B&W Companion (toy hauler hauler)
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