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Old 05-08-2017, 04:22 PM   #1
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5 Proof Propane Warning!

I learned a valuable lesson last weekend.
The fridge in our HW-277 will not accommodate a bottle of wine stored upright. For several years, we've stored our open bottle in the bottom rack on the fridge door...re-corked and laying on its side.

On Saturday evening, the cork fell out of a nearly full bottle, worked its way out of the fridge and flowed across the floor. No big deal...just a little spill cleanup. Except...

As the wine spread across the floor, our CO/Propane detector - which is very close to the fridge and in the path of the spreading wine - started sounding a propane alarm.

Suddenly, a minor spill seemed like a major emergency. We evacuated, turned off the propane at the tanks, aired out the camper, and began investigating for propane leaks. And, of course, the wine spill waited.

After the propane was off and the camper was ventilated, I closed the windows and door, and guess what? The propane alarm sounded again!

Ventilate, look for leaks, and once again, nothing. Close up the camper, and....ALARM!

Then came the "V-8 moment." I realized that the alcohol in the wine was evaporating right below the propane detector. Alcohol is a VOC (volatile organic compound) and propane is a VOC. With fingers crossed, I carefully and completely cleaned up the wine spill, closed up the camper and waited. No alarm! I turned on the propane. No alarm. I fired up the fridge and hot water heater. No alarm!

So, the lesson learned is that the propane detector will react to spilled alcohol as if it's propane. Thank goodness we weren't drinking Jack Daniels or Tequila!

I tested the CO/Propane alarm to verify that it was working. Once satisfied that the alarm still functioned, we went on to use all the appliances in the camper without further incident.

We now have a new theme song for propane alarms:
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Old 05-08-2017, 04:25 PM   #2
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You forgot to mention the other lesson you learned. Put the cork farther into the used bottle next time, or drink red and leave it on the counter. lol Oh ya good to know info
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Old 05-08-2017, 04:37 PM   #3
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Another seemingly innocent item is "invisible glass" brand cleaner. This will clean stainless, microwave fronts, any glass surface very well with minimal effort, however, it will set off that darned Co2 detector as well. Figured that out the hard way.
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Old 05-08-2017, 04:53 PM   #4
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You forgot to mention the other lesson you learned. Put the cork farther into the used bottle next time, or drink red and leave it on the counter. lol Oh ya good to know info
I just knew this would bring out the wise guys.
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Old 05-08-2017, 05:22 PM   #5
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All good info especially if you don't recommend no drinking.
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Old 05-08-2017, 05:46 PM   #6
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That's Alcohol Abuse !!
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Old 05-08-2017, 05:46 PM   #7
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Ermmm? Half empty bottle of wine? Never had that problem.
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Old 05-08-2017, 06:00 PM   #8
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Good reason to get the wire cutters out and disable the Nanny alarms.
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Old 05-09-2017, 12:54 PM   #9
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If you put wine in a slow cooker stew, that will set it off, too. We started a stew, and went to do laundry. When we came back the alarm was screaming and our little dog was very upset.
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Old 05-09-2017, 01:33 PM   #10
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Hair spray will set the alarm off as well
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Old 05-09-2017, 01:41 PM   #11
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Did I thank you for this? I didn't realize that common household cleaners emit enough VOCs to trigger the alarm.
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Old 05-09-2017, 01:41 PM   #12
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Good reason to get the wire cutters out and disable the Nanny alarms.
That's really bad advise.

The alarms are there for a reason. All it takes is for somebody to inadvertently bump one of the stove knobs to cause a propane leak. I've read about that exact situation happening on these forums.
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Old 05-09-2017, 01:42 PM   #13
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Epitaph

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Good reason to get the wire cutters out and disable the Nanny alarms.
We'll be sure to quote you in your epitaph.
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Old 05-09-2017, 01:45 PM   #14
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Ermmm? Half empty bottle of wine? Never had that problem.
I know, right!??
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Old 05-09-2017, 01:52 PM   #15
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We rarely consume adult beverages, but we did find, I think it was the year before last, that leaving the empty bottles in the trailer will set it off. We were drinking the Angry Orchard hard cider, and left the empty bottles on the stove to recycle the next day. And by empty, I don't mean mostly empty, I mean there was nothing left in them. And of course at 2am the thing went off. Aired everything out, went back to bed, went off again. The sequence of events apparently isn't unusual based on the OPs recap of events. We determined that it might possibly be the bottles, put them outside, and it didn't go off again. The good news is the alarm worked...
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Old 05-09-2017, 01:59 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Iwritecode View Post
That's really bad advise.

The alarms are there for a reason. All it takes is for somebody to inadvertently bump one of the stove knobs to cause a propane leak. I've read about that exact situation happening on these forums.
I agree with your statement.

I challenge the Site Team to delete the post, tell the poster the information can harm someone. This isn't the first time I have seen bad advice that can hurt someone.
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Old 05-09-2017, 02:12 PM   #17
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Good reason to get the wire cutters out and disable the Nanny alarms.
Something I try to remember is how will my advice be used and what risk would some procedure I advise put folks in, just something to think about. I took it as a joke thinking no one in there right mind would do that, but then we have darwin awards.
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Old 05-09-2017, 02:22 PM   #18
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I also took it as humor with the smiley face. If bad advice is given, the forum will usually correct such within the normal conversation in a thread. As long as it's all done within the forum guidelines of being respectful, then there is not really a problem.

And to the OP, ant spray will also set the alarms off. Ask me how I know? LOL
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Old 05-09-2017, 02:31 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Iwritecode View Post
That's really bad advise.

The alarms are there for a reason. All it takes is for somebody to inadvertently bump one of the stove knobs to cause a propane leak. I've read about that exact situation happening on these forums.
John, that may be my thread here, you are referring to:


http://www.forestriverforums.com/for...ml#post1290610
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Old 05-10-2017, 09:13 AM   #20
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Propane Alarm

My only input to this is not about the alarm but what you can do to prevent it from happening again.
I am lucky to live by a winery and I would encourage you to stop at the next one you come across in your travels. They sell very nifty little one way plugs that go in the bottle to seal it. It comes with a little hand pump that sucks all the air out which we all know is the enemy of a good wine.They also have them on Amazon. Don't forget to do a few tastings while you are there.
Sorry you went through so much hassle but at least you taught me something I didn't know about.
https://www.amazon.com/Original-Vacu...=wine+stoppers
Thanks for the post. Very informative.
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