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Open Roads Forum  >  Fifth-Wheels

 > How long does a propane tank last

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silvercorvette

Anderson SC

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Posted: 03/14/12 06:05pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Back in the 1980s I had a small pull behind that was about 17 to 19 foot long. I had two 20 pound tanks that seemed to last forever. When I took a two month trip from coast to coast one tank would last almost a month, but all I used it for was for the stove/oven, hot water, heat and fridge (no generator and no generator). After a long break from camping for various I started back up again two years ago but this time I had a T/C with A/C and a propane generator to run it. I quickly learned that a 20 pound tank does not last long on a hot day when you are running the A/C even though you are not trying to cool a large area. My first trip with the T/C I ran through a tank in a day and had a hard time finding a place to refill so on my next trip I carried a couple spare tanks

A few days ago I switched from T/C to 5th wheel but this on did not have a generator so I bought a Yamaha 4500 KW gas generator. I have a feeling that the fact that I will be using gasoline instead of propane to cool the camper will probably mean that a 30 pound tank will last a month or more which will eliminate the need to end the dangerous practice of carrying a spare tank.

My question is for those with 5th wheels that only use the camper's propane for cooking and heating is my assumption that using gasoline for electricity extend the life of one propane tank to about a month or more? I assume that when the first tank runs dry I will have a month to find a place to refill the empty tank.

* This post was edited 03/14/12 06:39pm by silvercorvette *


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Ka Ron

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Posted: 03/14/12 06:10pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I would really be concerned about using a 20lb tank in one day.

Sounds like something was not right.

You should have much better results with the new unit.


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sch911

Rochester Hills, MI

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Posted: 03/14/12 06:30pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

MTPockets1 wrote:

Running the propane generator all day? Yes, you'll go thru a lot of propane.


Good thing the OP is getting a gasoline powered generator!


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SWD

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Posted: 03/14/12 06:10pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Easy a month or more if you dont use the furnace. We camp on average 4 weeks in a year and our two 30# will last until well into next year, plus we have a 30# bottle that we use to cook outside with, so we hardly cook in the rig.

Old-Biscuit

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Posted: 03/14/12 06:24pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We FT in 34' FW......2 30# propane tanks.
Summer time.......propane for stove/oven and 24 hrs. for fridge (fridge is on LP approx. 4 hrs. each travel day....6 travel days) will last about 6 weeks.
Winter time......same conditions as above but now throw in furnace usage. Really depends on how cold it is...in -14*F snow went thru 30# tank in 2 days. In milder cold....low 40's....went thru 30# tank about 2 week avg.

Our Generator.....12 gallons of gasoline lasts roughly 36 hrs.

MTPockets1

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Posted: 03/14/12 06:16pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Running the propane generator all day? Yes, you'll go thru a lot of propane.


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silvercorvette

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Posted: 03/14/12 07:19pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

sch911 wrote:

MTPockets1 wrote:

Running the propane generator all day? Yes, you'll go thru a lot of propane.


Good thing the OP is getting a gasoline powered generator!


The small truck camper served me well, but it is time to move on the the 5th wheel. Trust me on this if you have a propane generator and it is necessary to make stops during the day when he temps are in the 90s you will go through 20 pounds in a day to a day an a half.

I bought the Yamaha a few weks before I picked up the 5th wheel in FL but I didn't pick it up till yesterday 3/15/12. I have suffered from chronic pain since the early 1990s and the medication I take makes me drowsy. I will not put the lives of others or my own in danger by driving after taking pills. I usually tough it out and drive in pain as long as I can take the pain before taking a pill. I can drive for about 15 to 20 minutes after taking the pill before I don't feel safe to drive and I look for a rest stop. When the temperature is in the high 90s an the pavement is throwing heat back off the pavement I have to keep the generator running.

Before I got a camper it restricted my traveling a lot and I really enjoyed traveling. I would either try to talk the motel person into renting a room for a few hours to nap or if I paid full price I wold quit driving for the day after only a couple hundred miles.

Now I usually nap for a while then get back in and drive but when I do stop to nap it is usually the hottest part of the day. Most of the time I can turn off the A/C at night but there have been times I had to keep it going all night and that is when I used a 20 pound tank or more in one day. Back in the 1980s my camper didn't have all the fancy stuff live microwave, TV, A/C, and a heater with a fan, thermostat and electronic ignition. Back then you had to hold a button down and hold it till the pilot light stayed on. I still remember a cold windy night camped at the Grand canyon when the pilot light blew out and I had to kneel down with my hands shaking from the cold while I waited for the pilot light to stay lit.

Now that I am back to using propane just for cooking and heating water and I will have two 30 pound tanks instead of two 20 I assume I will get a month but I just wanted to hear how long other people make a 30 pound tank last.

By the way I also picked up an aux 90 gallon diesel tank yesterday so the only two major dollar purchases are a Direct TV dish and a 12 volt TV.

In another thread someone suggested a 120 volt TV with an inverter but the 120 volt TVs I looked at on line seem to consume about double the watts of a 12 Volt TV.

Sorry to ramble on but when I get going I forget to stop/

rthibodaux

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Posted: 03/14/12 08:12pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I bought my camper 11 months ago and still on the first tank. So how long will is last, nobody knows.

45Ricochet

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Posted: 03/14/12 07:47pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

sch911 wrote:

MTPockets1 wrote:

Running the propane generator all day? Yes, you'll go thru a lot of propane.


Good thing the OP is getting a gasoline powered generator!


Finding it can have its problems although I've NEVER not found it.
Cost per dollar is really not a big difference. Gasoline is what now $3.75 a gallon? Just got LP yesterday for $2.59.
Its not gallon per hour, rather dollar per hour IMO.
Yes a genny will use fuel, no doubt about it.


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Posted: 03/15/12 10:48am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Ka Ron wrote:

I would really be concerned about using a 20lb tank in one day.

Sounds like something was not right.

You should have much better results with the new unit.


I agree, we made several camping trips in our 5er and only went through one 30# bottle and one trip (4 days) was cold so we ran the furnace every day.


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