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Old 05-04-2022, 02:13 PM   #1
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Propane gauges?

I have dual propane tanks on my mini lite. I would like to install propane level gauges. I see inexpensive gauges at Walmart for grills. Will these work? What do you recommend?
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Old 05-04-2022, 02:28 PM   #2
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I have the Mopeka Tank sensors and love them. They are pricey but well worth it.
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Old 05-04-2022, 02:35 PM   #3
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The issue with the 'Walmart' gauges is that they rely on pressure for the level. However the vapor pressure of propane stays pretty much the same until it's almost completely empty, so it reads fine one minute and empty the next.
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Old 05-04-2022, 02:56 PM   #4
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I have used the magnets that you place on the tank, that changes color based on temp. They have been pretty accurate for me, at least enough to know when I am starting to get close to empty
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Old 05-04-2022, 02:58 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by ThomasCarpenter View Post
I have dual propane tanks on my mini lite. I would like to install propane level gauges. I see inexpensive gauges at Walmart for grills. Will these work? What do you recommend?
Do you not have an auto changeover regulator.
Knowing how to read the changeover indicator (and then filling/exchanging the tank) assures you'll always have LP.
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Old 05-04-2022, 03:20 PM   #6
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I have the Mopeka Tank sensors and love them. They are pricey but well worth it.
X2. Do yourself a favor and look no further than the Mopeka sensors. They work great with Bluetooth!

https://www.amazon.com/AP-Products-1...60&sr=8-7&th=1

And at 41% off it's a deal!
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Old 05-04-2022, 04:30 PM   #7
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X2. Do yourself a favor and look no further than the Mopeka sensors. They work great with Bluetooth!

https://www.amazon.com/AP-Products-1...60&sr=8-7&th=1

And at 41% off it's a deal!
Well, count me as one of the few who doesn't like the Mopeka sensors. I have them and quit using them as I couldn't get a reliable signal when I needed it (even standing right next to the tanks). Add to that the fact that there is no way to shut them off when not using them so the batteries only last a season at best. Changing the batteries out is a pain given that the units are stuck on the bottom of the tanks!

For me, these things were just more trouble than they were worth. Glad others are having better luck with them.
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Old 05-04-2022, 05:20 PM   #8
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Well, count me as one of the few who doesn't like the Mopeka sensors. I have them and quit using them as I couldn't get a reliable signal when I needed it (even standing right next to the tanks). Add to that the fact that there is no way to shut them off when not using them so the batteries only last a season at best. Changing the batteries out is a pain given that the units are stuck on the bottom of the tanks!

For me, these things were just more trouble than they were worth. Glad others are having better luck with them.
I have and love Mopeka sensors on my tanks. Battery change occurs once per year with regular maintenance. Tanks come off, rust wire brushed off, some "Rustoleum White" added, new batteries, and back to camping.

Getting a reliable reading does require that there be some grease (silicone grease, vaseline) between sensor and tank bottom.

Gauges are no where near accurate. Temperature affects the pressure so on a cold morning you might think your tank is starting to run out and by mid-afternoon it's back full. May look good at bedtime but a cold night of furnace running and an unpleasant surprise might be in store.
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Old 05-04-2022, 05:32 PM   #9
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I purchase a Truma ultrasound propane tester several years ago, and it works great and I am now able to tell very close what the actual propane level is in the tank. I had tried the gauge type and they are not worth the cost to discard them. I also tried the magnetic strips and such, but they were hard to use and very inaccurate.
There are other makers of the ultrasound propane tester also Dometic makes one also, but I have no experience with them. But you will love the Truma unit it is well made and very easy to use.
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Old 05-05-2022, 11:22 AM   #10
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I have and love Mopeka sensors on my tanks....

Getting a reliable reading does require that there be some grease (silicone grease, vaseline) between sensor and tank bottom.
Grease between the magnet and the tank? What is the logic behind this? Seems it would add more interference, not reduce it. Plus, I would think your magnet wouldn't hold as well with a layer of grease between it and the metal tank. I'm not unwilling to try it, though if it truly works!



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I purchase a Truma ultrasound propane tester several years ago, and it works great and I am now able to tell very close what the actual propane level is in the tank....
There are other makers of the ultrasound propane tester also Dometic makes one also, but I have no experience with them. But you will love the Truma unit it is well made and very easy to use.
It looks like the Truma tester isn't available anymore, unfortunately. I'm thinking about trying the Dometic tester, though if I can't get my Mopeka's working per Mike's suggestion above.
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Old 05-05-2022, 11:53 AM   #11
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Several friends of mine worry about their propane tank levels, even though they have auto change over regulators. They are constantly putzing with the latest and greatest tank sensors and none of them seem to work very well.
Turn both tanks on. Look at your switch over indicator every few days to see if it is red. When I really want to know how much propane is left I either feel for the cold line on the tank being used, or just take off the tie down and feel how much it weighs.
After you RV for awhile in your particular RV, you get a feel for how long a tank will last. During the winter, I know a tank will last about 10 days if the heater is running pretty much non-stop at night. During the summer, using propane during boondocking for tankless water heater, refrigerator, and stove... a 30lb tank will last many weeks.
Save your money and take 5pickers advice to learn how to use your existing system.
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Old 05-05-2022, 12:27 PM   #12
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Grease between the magnet and the tank? What is the logic behind this? Seems it would add more interference, not reduce it. Plus, I would think your magnet wouldn't hold as well with a layer of grease between it and the metal tank. I'm not unwilling to try it, though if it truly works!




According to Mopeka (and just logic) since their sensors are Ultrasonic, any gap, no matter how small, will affect the accuracy of the reading (if you can even get one). The "grease" will fill any small voids between magnet and tank. It will be thin enough that it won't affect the hold of the magnet but will enhance the transfer of ultrasonic sound waves into the tank.

No different than when the Ultrasound Tech smears the "Jelly" all over the part of your body when getting something inside examined by ultrasound imaging.

Mopeka shipps their sensors with a small packet of "ultrasound grease" and if not careful it gets lost in the unpackaging.

I've had it on my sensors for a couple years now and neither sensor has come loose in many thousands of miles traveled. I can even get readings on my phone while sitting in my house over 50' away from my TT.

FWiW, Mopeka now makes sensors for other liquid tanks like the FW and Gray tank. They don't mention the Black tank but I'm guessing it has solids floating in it that would interfere with the measurements from tank bottom to top of liquid ) Less expensive than the See Level system and you can read tank levels from your smart phone.
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Old 05-05-2022, 12:55 PM   #13
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The Walmart gauges work fine as long as you acquaint yourself with interpolation of the gauge itself. I've found that working pressure on both a 20lb or 30lb tank will register in the "green range" from full to just above 1/4. When the needle reaches the "yellow" range you are just below 1/4. The span of the color coding is commensurate with vapor pressure, hence the narrow yellow and red bands.
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Old 05-05-2022, 12:58 PM   #14
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According to Mopeka (and just logic) since their sensors are Ultrasonic, any gap, no matter how small, will affect the accuracy of the reading (if you can even get one). The "grease" will fill any small voids between magnet and tank. It will be thin enough that it won't affect the hold of the magnet but will enhance the transfer of ultrasonic sound waves into the tank.

No different than when the Ultrasound Tech smears the "Jelly" all over the part of your body when getting something inside examined by ultrasound imaging.

Mopeka shipps their sensors with a small packet of "ultrasound grease" and if not careful it gets lost in the unpackaging.

I've had it on my sensors for a couple years now and neither sensor has come loose in many thousands of miles traveled. I can even get readings on my phone while sitting in my house over 50' away from my TT.

FWiW, Mopeka now makes sensors for other liquid tanks like the FW and Gray tank. They don't mention the Black tank but I'm guessing it has solids floating in it that would interfere with the measurements from tank bottom to top of liquid ) Less expensive than the See Level system and you can read tank levels from your smart phone.
Thanks for the explanation, that makes a lot of sense when you put it that way. My grease must have gotten lost in the unpackaging as I don't recall ever seeing that (or reading about it in the instructions, for that matter). Should be easy enough to try out so I guess I'll give my sensors one more try. Glad I didn't throw them out, yet!
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Old 05-05-2022, 01:24 PM   #15
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Thanks for the explanation, that makes a lot of sense when you put it that way. My grease must have gotten lost in the unpackaging as I don't recall ever seeing that (or reading about it in the instructions, for that matter). Should be easy enough to try out so I guess I'll give my sensors one more try. Glad I didn't throw them out, yet!
Make sure to use either the spacer "clips" that came with the Mopeka sensors or the rubber "Halo" ring so the tanks don't sit on the sensors. The sensors are just a little thicker than the distance between domed bottom of tank and bottom of bottom tank ring and can get crushed or easily dislodged when moving tanks around for refilling .

https://www.amazon.com/Mopeka-Tank-C.../dp/B07HQZRR9F

I use the rubber "Halo" rings as they stay in place better than the aluminum "clips". I also just pull up to the fill station with trailer and have tanks filled without having to remove them from trailer. Getting lazy in my advanced years.
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Old 05-05-2022, 02:10 PM   #16
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Has anyone compared the Lippert Tank Sensors against the Mopeka?
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Old 05-05-2022, 04:37 PM   #17
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Has anyone compared the Lippert Tank Sensors against the Mopeka?
The Lippert tank sensor is just a re-badged Mopeka Tank Pro sensor.
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