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Old 02-22-2021, 08:42 PM   #1
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Motorhome Propane tank wonít fill

I have tried on several occasions to fill my 2003 Sunseekerís propane tank. When empty, it fills to 2 gallons, then shuts off at the pump. I can use the 2 gallons, then run out of fuel. Before Covid I could go to the local Ferrell gas company office and a technician would fill or troubleshoot problems, but their offices are all closed these days. When I have propane, all systems work great.

Does anyone know what can cause my tanks to stop filling at two gallons? And where can I go to diagnose/fix the problem?

Thanks for your help!
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Old 02-22-2021, 09:10 PM   #2
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I suppose you are opening the small vent valve till it spits (white) and then closing and then shutting down the LP pump.
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Old 02-22-2021, 09:26 PM   #3
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I had the same problem which was fixed by removing the “overflow prevention device”. You can replace it with a straight through fill fitting.

https://www.amazon.com/Rego-Propane-...s%2C280&sr=8-2

Just remember that when using this fitting it’s mandatory to slightly open the vent valve mentioned earlier to determine when the tank is full.
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Old 02-22-2021, 10:09 PM   #4
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Also a motorhome tank should only be serviced to about 3/4 full via tank gage.
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Old 02-22-2021, 11:14 PM   #5
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I suppose you are opening the small vent valve till it spits (white) and then closing and then shutting down the LP pump.
I am not pumping. The technicians at the gas stations are pumping. Iíve tried two different locations. They both seem to know what they are doing the pump just automatically shuts off at two gallons. Iíve used these guys before this last season and never had a problem.
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Old 02-22-2021, 11:19 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by emm-dee View Post
I had the same problem which was fixed by removing the ďoverflow prevention deviceĒ. You can replace it with a straight through fill fitting.

https://www.amazon.com/Rego-Propane-...s%2C280&sr=8-2

Just remember that when using this fitting itís mandatory to slightly open the vent valve mentioned earlier to determine when the tank is full.
I donít feel comfortable modifying my system. Should the rv repair shop be able to handle this?
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Old 02-23-2021, 01:54 AM   #7
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I am not pumping. The technicians at the gas stations are pumping. I’ve tried two different locations. They both seem to know what they are doing the pump just automatically shuts off at two gallons. I’ve used these guys before this last season and never had a problem.
They may look like they know what they are doing, but as 'bubbles' said, they should be turning the vent valve to bleed out the air that has entered the tank. If they don't bleed the air out, there is no room for the propane and it won't fill.

Do you happen to have an rv park near you that sells propane? Usually (but not always), they know how to fill the tank of a motorhome.
If that's not the problem, you need a propane dealer or an rv repair shop.
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Old 02-23-2021, 02:59 PM   #8
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Gage inaccuracy is common. Mine always says almost empty when it is over half full.
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Old 02-23-2021, 03:10 PM   #9
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My gauge has a ?variable? Red mark and full is determined where the needle points on the
mark.... based on temperature. There is no ĺ deviauper temperature.
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Old 02-23-2021, 03:25 PM   #10
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They may look like they know what they are doing, but as 'bubbles' said, they should be turning the vent valve to bleed out the air that has entered the tank. If they don't bleed the air out, there is no room for the propane and it won't fill.

Do you happen to have an rv park near you that sells propane? Usually (but not always), they know how to fill the tank of a motorhome.
If that's not the problem, you need a propane dealer or an rv repair shop.
Great suggestion! I did see the last guy that tried to fill my tank open a valve. I will look for an RV park that fills propane close by. I live in Kitsap County, WA.
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Old 02-24-2021, 08:58 AM   #11
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I had a similar problem some years ago. I was at an rv park and they couldn't get any propane into the tank, even with the vent valve open. It turned out that, for this refill, it was necessary to open the vent valve and let it release pressure for a while before propane would enter the tank.


Phil
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Old 02-24-2021, 03:47 PM   #12
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I had a similar problem some years ago. I was at an rv park and they couldn't get any propane into the tank, even with the vent valve open. It turned out that, for this refill, it was necessary to open the vent valve and let it release pressure for a while before propane would enter the tank.


Phil
Iíll try that, thanks!
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Old 02-24-2021, 04:10 PM   #13
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I had a similar problem some years ago. I was at an rv park and they couldn't get any propane into the tank, even with the vent valve open. It turned out that, for this refill, it was necessary to open the vent valve and let it release pressure for a while before propane would enter the tank.


Phil
When I had the original fill problem the dealer service told me that the factory uses air to pressurize a new tank to find leaks. It the air is not let out it can definitively cause a fill problem. It took about four hours to drain the tank via the vent valve.

That partially solved the problem but could only get about five gallons loaded until replacing the fill fitting.

I was also told sometimes the one way action of the fill valve can jam. The solution is to used a non metallic rod and rubber mallet to pop it open. They also said thatís a temporary fix because if it jams once it will do it again.
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Old 02-24-2021, 05:57 PM   #14
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When I had the original fill problem the dealer service told me that the factory uses air to pressurize a new tank to find leaks. It the air is not let out it can definitively cause a fill problem. It took about four hours to drain the tank via the vent valve.

That partially solved the problem but could only get about five gallons loaded until replacing the fill fitting.

I was also told sometimes the one way action of the fill valve can jam. The solution is to used a non metallic rod and rubber mallet to pop it open. They also said thatís a temporary fix because if it jams once it will do it again.
My next question is whether or not the fill valve is replaceable or do you need to replace the whole tank. I will probably take into the shop and donít want to get stuck paying for parts/repairs I donít need. I donít know enough to be comfortable with self repairs ó especially with flammable.
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Old 02-24-2021, 07:08 PM   #15
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Have seen this before and its depends on the tech filling it. The OPD is designed to prevent a problem so removing that is not good. However these fill valves also have a velocity flow characteristic where if you try to fill from a high flow pump it will restrict the flow. The experienced techs (read us gray guys) know that when you connect to the fill port and then open the vent valve, you very slowly open the fill valve on the hose to where you have to 'feather' the flow. This slows down the fill a bit but you will be able to get the propane in. The OPD valve is a float driven shutoff so liquid propane level controls that.

But don't rule out something else in the tank, the OPD float could have a problem. But that takes a propane tank specialist to drawing the tank, inspect and repair.
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Old 02-24-2021, 07:10 PM   #16
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My next question is whether or not the fill valve is replaceable or do you need to replace the whole tank. I will probably take into the shop and donít want to get stuck paying for parts/repairs I donít need. I donít know enough to be comfortable with self repairs ó especially with flammable.
If you need the vent fitting then it appears to be easily replaceable. Sometimes a person filling the tank will use pliers to open/close the valve because theyíre too lazy to put on protective gloves (propane squirting from the vent is cold enough to hurt bare skin). I mention this because the vent valve may have been over tightened. Use pliers and gently try to unscrew it.
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Old 02-24-2021, 07:31 PM   #17
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Thanks for all the great comments. I am now better informed, so when I take the motorhome in for repairs, I can make an informed decision. Last summer I replaced a refrigerator that probably didn’t need replacing, because a service technician told me to. Then I had similar problems with the new refrigerator. It ended up being an electrical circuit short, but no way to prove it. I don’t want to make that mistake again.
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