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Old 08-15-2010, 09:54 AM   #1
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Purge propane tank ????

New 2011 Rockwood Ultra Lite RV, I brought what I thought was an empty propane bottle in to have it refilled. 30lb bottle only took 4 lbs(or maybe gallons?) of propane. The technician said the bottle still had remaining propane from previous fill at dealer and that it needed to be "purged " before it could be properly filled. They didn't have the capability to purge the bottle. Anybody understand this process? Is it a defective bottle or just a careless fill from the dealer?
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Old 08-15-2010, 11:12 AM   #2
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Well there's a BIG difference between 4 gallons and 4 pounds!

I'm no LP tech guy but we had one of our tanks re-filled at the camping
resort at Bryce Canyon in June.
The guy attached it as normal with it sitting on a scale.
He let the LP run for a little bit then he took a screw driver
and opened a relief valve on the side and let it hiss for a second.
Then he closed it and looked at the scales.
He did this about 3 times.
I guessed he was allowing the trapped air to escape so he could
get more LP in the tank. Of course gas vapor and air
(assuming there is air in the tank) will come
out when they do this.
This was NOT a new tank and had been refilled at least 4 or 5 times
previously.
I didn't ask what he was doing. Now I wish I had. I'm just
guessing he thought it needed purging for some reason.
Previous filler type people had always simply let it run until the
internal float shut the valve and then they quit.
Donno what the difference was this one time at Bryce nor why
your filler did not simply bleed out some vapor/air on your tank.

Purging is just letting trapped air out so they can fit more Liquid
propane in. I had a dealer fill a new one for me and he did a
similar thing with a screwdriver on the relief valve.
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Old 08-15-2010, 11:30 AM   #3
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Check out this link: Purging new Cylinders and Tanks
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Old 08-15-2010, 11:44 AM   #4
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Thanks for the link Chap, lots of good information there that I didn't know!
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Old 08-15-2010, 11:52 AM   #5
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Actually, I didn't know either. But it makes sense that you need to get the air out of a new tank.....I just never thought about it before this thread.
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Old 08-15-2010, 11:56 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtnguy View Post
Actually, I didn't know either. But it makes sense that you need to get the air out of a new tank.....I just never thought about it before this thread.
I had known that if a tank has been exposed to the outside air or run completely dry for some reason that it should be purged to make sure that there is no air (moisture) in there that can cause problems. I know that some of the bigger LP suppliers have a way to pump the propane out of a cylinder or tank and then do the process described in the article. Very good information.
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Old 08-15-2010, 07:53 PM   #7
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Thanks , a great informative reply. I guess my dealer blew it.
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Old 08-16-2010, 08:58 AM   #8
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Thinkn' on this subject, I am now wondering if some of the problems associated with gas (furnaces and fridges not running correctly) on new trailers could be a result of improperly purged propane tanks.
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Old 08-18-2010, 11:29 PM   #9
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Just another example of some people who don't due their job correctly. Stuff like this burns me up. It's even worse when you can go find it so easily on the web.

A/C guys are among the worse IMO. What makes it really bad is most guys are taught on the job, instead of going to a trade school and learning the right way to do things.
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Old 08-19-2010, 09:37 AM   #10
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Purging an empty tank that has been open to the atmospher contains air and moisture. If the moisture is not removed and propane is added it will have added the moisture to the propane. When the propane bottle is installed it must turn a liquid to a gas and the gas then will have the moisture content in it. The gas is very cold and when it goes thru the regulator it MAY form ice and plug the regulator up. Everything would then have to be removed and heated up naturally so the regulator can work again.

This is why you need to purge an opened empty propane bottle.

Oh. All they do is use a compressor and suck all the air out of the bottle and them close the valve.
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