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Old 10-26-2020, 09:01 PM   #1
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Propane Woes

So..... bad weather has hit the midwest, and my wife and myself pulled our camper up from our private lake to the house. I plugged it into power from the house and turnEd on the furnace and tank heaters....... no heat from the furnace. I figured one of us had closed the valves on the 2- 30# tanks, and pulled the tank cover off........ hereís what we found..... unfortunately both tanks were indeed open- lucky there was no ignition source.
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Old 10-27-2020, 06:05 AM   #2
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How did that happen?
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Old 10-27-2020, 06:29 AM   #3
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Wow! That’s pretty scary.
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Old 10-27-2020, 07:24 AM   #4
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DW found one to be leaking in the same place last spring, which is probably a precursor to the picture above. Luckily I bought a pair since all the mucking around to replace one opened a leak in the other.
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Old 10-27-2020, 07:37 AM   #5
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Wow, just wow!
I had one leak at the end but never dreamed of them coming off. That's down stream of the regulator so it pressure in mere OUNCES per square inch. Hardly seems like enough to "blow off" the hoses. Looks like something that would trigger a recall but how ya gonna know who made the hoses, and when?
Curious- how old is your rig??
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Old 10-27-2020, 07:59 AM   #6
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Wow, just wow!
I had one leak at the end but never dreamed of them coming off. That's down stream of the regulator so it pressure in mere OUNCES per square inch. Hardly seems like enough to "blow off" the hoses. Looks like something that would trigger a recall but how ya gonn2a know who made the hoses, and when?
Curious- how old is your rig??
I believe that is upstream of the regulator. They are the pigtails leading from the hp tank to the regulator, not the regulator leading to the tt.
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Old 10-27-2020, 08:04 AM   #7
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I believe that is upstream of the regulator. They are the pigtails leading from the hp tank to the regulator, not the regulator leading to the tt.
You are right!
(need more coffee!!)
Still pretty scary.
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Old 10-27-2020, 08:30 AM   #8
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That is the reason I never turn on both tanks at the same time. Yes, I know that is the purpose of the auto change-over regulator and yes I know the tank always runs out at 2 am on a cold night but I just don't want to risk dumping both tanks in case of a malfunction.
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Old 10-27-2020, 09:10 AM   #9
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That is the reason I never turn on both tanks at the same time. Yes, I know that is the purpose of the auto change-over regulator and yes I know the tank always runs out at 2 am on a cold night but I just don't want to risk dumping both tanks in case of a malfunction.
The new valves have a "choke" that shuts off flow of Propane when something like this happens. If a hose blows off it seals off the tank even if the valve is open. Sometimes the safety is triggered when a valve is opened too quickly on a "flat" system and the sudden flow makes it think there is a major leak.

Sometimes the cheapest part available isn't the most reliable.
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Old 10-27-2020, 09:56 AM   #10
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The surge valve does not shut off the tank completely.
Some gas will escape and the tank will empty eventually.
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Old 10-27-2020, 01:40 PM   #11
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No idea what could have caused it, and have never seen anything like it. When I pulled the bad hoses off of the regulator the fittings were so loose inside the crimps that you could turn the fitting inside the crimp with your fingers. I guess I wouldnít be as bothered by it if the hoses were a million years old, but I replaced the regulator and hoses about a year ago.... weird..... Id stay away from those hoses.... I attached another picture.
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Old 10-27-2020, 01:52 PM   #12
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The surge valve does not shut off the tank completely.
Some gas will escape and the tank will empty eventually.
One of the vendors at the virtual rally claimed to have a device that did completely shut off the gas. He claimed that it was the only one that would do so.
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Old 10-27-2020, 01:53 PM   #13
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Just another word of warning with this incident.... batteries were turned off, only turned on when we were in need of power. Apparently we had an unknown ant problem as there were hundreds of dead carpenter ants littered across the floor..... in retrospect I beleive when the propane tanks blew off the cabin area filled with the gas too- killing the ants...... Scary scenario- had it been a nice evening, and had we decided not to turn the battery master on, and slept in the camper the propane alarm would not have gone off........ Really scary stuff to think about, and I may be hard wiring that detector directly to the batteries in the future.....
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Old 10-27-2020, 02:17 PM   #14
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in retrospect I beleive when the propane tanks blew off the cabin area filled with the gas too- killing the ants...... Scary scenario- had it been a nice evening, and had we decided not to turn the battery master on, and slept in the camper the propane alarm would not have gone off........ Really scary stuff to think about, and I may be hard wiring that detector directly to the batteries in the future.....
I assumed from the picture the LP tanks were tongue mounted. If so then how would the camper fill with gas?

I would not hardwire the propane detector to the battery or you will likely end up with dead batteries after a few days of storage. I guess I have never stayed in a camper without at least turning the batteries on for a light or two.

Lastly, Fairly sure carpenter ants seek out decaying wood. If there is a carpenter ant issue I would start looking for the decaying wood.
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Old 10-27-2020, 03:36 PM   #15
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Point well taken on the battery drain.... our Little Micro Lite 21FBRS is mostly aluminum and foam, and new enough that wood rot is not an issue. The piled up wood under the tongue and right side wheels was another story. Ants and mice seem to be able to get into anyplace! Yes.... the tanks are tongue mounted, but I’m at a lose to explain why all the ants were dead? Perhaps some ant cult committing mass suicide? Just seemed that the massive propane leak and dead ants made a nice easy answer.... if not then what killed them, and do I want to be exposed to the same thing? I’m still thinking 60 lbs of propane all released at the same time probably found its way in....
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