Propane tank, is it ready for work ?

Discussion in 'HVAC Heating & Cooling' started by GG_Mass, Sep 9, 2013.

  1. DonL

    DonL Jack of all trades

    Messages:
    3,812
    Location:
    Houston, TX

    If the tank was locked, You would not have been able to lift the lid.

    Your ON/OFF Valve Knob seems to be missing. Or it may use a Gas Valve Key.

    Can you take some better pictures , From all sides of the Tank Valve ?

    I agree that a contract is not good if they charge you a Maintenance Fee.

    I pay $15.00 a month for the Maintenance Fee, and use $5.00 worth of gas in the summer. And they maintain nothing on my property.

    Sometimes safety is worth paying for, Or you may not be around to pay for it.


    Good Luck.
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2013
  2. GG_Mass

    GG_Mass Member

    Messages:
    49
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    I agree, If I was to consider the tank as years long worth service for me, I will sign a contact w/o any issues. However, I don't think I will use that tank, at this point, I would say I don't need it, but, it is there, and it is full of gas that I paid for.
    A contract is binding for three years, with rental fees for the tank and a 120$ /year obligation for gas purchase (no matter if you use it or not). I found out that I have natural gas in our street, and I'm going to scrap what money I have to have it run to our house and then for a plumber to distribute it to points needed around the house. I wish I could put the 205$ that I paid at closing for the propane, towards running the natural gas line !
    I will post better pictures , hopefully this evening.
  3. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    21,814
    Location:
    New England
    If the existing appliances are setup for propane, you MUST convert them to NG (if they make a kit for it), or you'll be very disappointed. If they do not make a new kit, they will be unusable on NG. NG uses both a different (lower) pressure regulator and a much bigger jet since per volume, it has less energy (thus the need for the larger jet along with the lower pressure). Those kits generally come with a new regulator and replacement jets, but could be much more involved. Once changed, the air/fuel mixture may need to be changed, especially if it does not contain a new burner, and only changes the jets. So, it's not just swapping the connection.
  4. DonL

    DonL Jack of all trades

    Messages:
    3,812
    Location:
    Houston, TX

    You will need to change the orifice on your gas appliances if you change gas type.

    That tank that you have may be out of inspection date, and may need to be Tested or Replaced.

    I would buy a tank, Instead of renting one. You would need to pay to get it pressure tested every 10 Years, depends on the state law. Or just get a new tank.


    Good Luck.



    I doubled with you Jim. I am a slow typer. Is typer a word ? It is now.

    Good point that you made Jim.
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2013
  5. GG_Mass

    GG_Mass Member

    Messages:
    49
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    Sadly/Happily , I only have a space hitter which uses the propane tank. My thoughts towards running gas to house are related to swapping the oil burner in my baseboard system to gas.
  6. GG_Mass

    GG_Mass Member

    Messages:
    49
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    So are we all in agreement , as in - no need to post further pictures, the tank has been tampered by the gas company in order to prevent usage ?
  7. Dana

    Dana In the trades

    Messages:
    2,785
    Location:
    01609
    "It is not metered as it is actually used." I guess I don't really understand what do you MEAN by that?

    It's true that I don't actually understand what you mean by

    "The posts above imply that you are charged by the the amount of gas actually used."

    Really? Can you point to the text you think implies that, which might help me understand the question?

    Are you wondering about somehow metering it and charging as it comes out of your site-located tank?

    Or are you wondering if they're completely filling the tank?

    Are you talking about what the gauge on the tank actually indicates?

    I don't get the confusion.

    As with any other liquid fuel you pay by volume when you fill up, and rarely meter it with any precision as it comes out of the tank. The stuff is measured as a liquid, just as any other liquid. You pay for what they put into the tank, no more, no less, and the guy charging you has no idea whether, when, & how you used the tank previoiusly, only the volume that the tank can take-in from his metered dispensing equipment at the legal safe pressure.

    The cannisters are fitted gauges that work via the vapor pressure in the tank, not volume. Overfilling a tank is hazardous if there isn't at least some vapor bubble for the liquid propane to expand into as it's volume increases with temperature heating up in the sun, etc. If it were 100% full with liquid propane heating up in the sun could cause the cannister to burst. While it's physically possible to over-fill the tank, the gauge is there to let you know when you've hit the safe fill-pressure limit for the cannister for the fuel type, and when it's nearly empty. They are not super-precision instruments, and don't measure volume, only pressure.
  8. DonL

    DonL Jack of all trades

    Messages:
    3,812
    Location:
    Houston, TX


    If it has gas in it, and you have paid for it, Post pictures. No need for it to go to waste.
  9. GG_Mass

    GG_Mass Member

    Messages:
    49
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    Here's a picture, I think it's a good angel.
    Let's see if I'm getting this right. (I'm playing a bit dumb, A. Because I am, B. Because it may help other dummies that may read this thread one day. )
    Red-Area in question
    Gray- The parts that were placed by the gas company, and the silver round part is the one that needs a 'special tool' in order to be removed.
    Blue- The part that will eventually need to enter or 'connect' to the tank, after the parts in the gray are will be removed.

    True/False ?

    Attached Files:

  10. Tom Sawyer

    Tom Sawyer In the Trades

    Messages:
    3,060
    Location:
    Maine
    Grab hold of the thin copper tube and pull. It will move because the POL fitting has been removed from the tank valve and capped with that yellow plastic cap. The silver looking thing that is installed in the tank valve is the plug. You need a special key to remove it. The gas in the tank has been paid for by the previous owner but the tank is owned by the gas company and their contract allows them to keep you from using their tank without signing a contract with them so unless you do that you won't have access to the gas in their tank even though you paid for it. I hope that clears this up.
  11. GG_Mass

    GG_Mass Member

    Messages:
    49
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    Yes, this certainly clears it up. It's a decision I'll have to make.
    Thanks for all the help.
  12. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,263
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    quote; Thats a plug the gas company installs. You have to call them to remove it so they can charge you for the gas.

    The "gas company" does not install a plug which has to be removed. They charge you for the gas when they FILL the tank.
  13. DonL

    DonL Jack of all trades

    Messages:
    3,812
    Location:
    Houston, TX

    The Head of a bolt ?
  14. Tom Sawyer

    Tom Sawyer In the Trades

    Messages:
    3,060
    Location:
    Maine
    Sorry HJ, but yes they do. Its standard procedure when a home is vacated or the customer owes them money. They do indeed charge you when you fill the tank but thats a different issue. I know this because I have installed more of those plugs than I care to recall over the years. They do it to keep unauthorized people from using their equipment.

    Don L, Nope a bolt won't take it off and truthfully, if you mess with it you run the risk of distorting the brass valve and then the POL fitting won't seat properly.
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