Video - Refilling 1 pound propane tanks - Ford Transit USA Forum
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post #1 of 36 (permalink) Old 12-15-2016, 05:31:PM Thread Starter
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Video - Refilling 1 pound propane tanks

I'm posting this here because I had several comments in my van build videos about why I don't use 20 pound tanks when camping

So here's a video explaining why and how I refill my 1 pound propane tanks


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post #2 of 36 (permalink) Old 12-15-2016, 05:32:PM Thread Starter
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Note that I had to mod the Flame Kind refill adapter to be able to accept Coleman 1 pound tanks
I'll have more info on that mod later

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post #3 of 36 (permalink) Old 12-15-2016, 06:08:PM
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UHaul has started a program to sell refillable 1lb LP cans for $12 each. So far it hasn't spread all over the US but they are working on it....they refill them for $2.
I have a Bernzomatic 1lb refillable I bought 30+ years ago...they quit making them way back though.

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post #4 of 36 (permalink) Old 12-15-2016, 06:19:PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Budsky View Post
UHaul has started a program to sell refillable 1lb LP cans for $12 each. So far it hasn't spread all over the US but they are working on it....they refill them for $2. I have a Bernzomatic 1lb refillable I bought 30+ years ago...they quit making them way back though.
The refillable cylinders are $12 at U-Haul?
Not bad considering they want $20 for the Flame King cylinders on Amazon.

Then again, I just bought two new Coleman 1 pound tanks at Walmart for $3.50 each
So you get the propane and the tank that you can refill a bunch of times for pretty cheap

Refilling is better than throwing the Coleman tanks in the trash and sending them to the dump

1 US gallon of propane @ 60ºF weighs 4.23lbs
So whatever propane currently cost per gallon, divide that by four and that's approx what it cost you to fill up a 1 pound cylinder.


Another note:
Tractor supply fills tanks up to 100 pounds by the gallon
So say you have a 1/2 full 20 pound tank
They will only charge for what the tank needs to top it off
So this is a much better deal than exchanging 20 pound tanks at Walmart
Unless you have an antique tank that you want to get rid of so you can have a nice new tank

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Last edited by EL34xyz; 12-15-2016 at 06:30:PM.
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post #5 of 36 (permalink) Old 12-15-2016, 07:04:PM
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If you have a Costco nearby they offer a great deal- propane is currently around $1.90 a gallon at the one I use.
And I agree disposable tanks are a waste of money and resources...and the exchanges are worse- for one thing most of them only give you 15 lbs instead of the 20 the tank will hold.
I've been a loyal TSC customer for propane until Costco opened- they are about 50 cents a gallon less.

I think you are in WNC- there is a gas place in Asheville that refills 20 lb tanks on Saturdays for $6, Blossman 170 Sweeten Creek Rd. Stumbled across them once when up there needing a refill.


Oh one caution on refilling the throaway canisters- I've done that but found many the blow off valve will start leaking after a few times- I suppose being throwaway they didn't build that part very well figuring it will never be used in most cases...

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Last edited by Budsky; 12-15-2016 at 07:07:PM.
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post #6 of 36 (permalink) Old 12-15-2016, 07:14:PM Thread Starter
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Oh one caution on refilling the throaway canisters- I've done that but found many the blow off valve will start leaking after a few times- I suppose being throwaway they didn't build that part very well figuring it will never be used in most cases...
Yes, good point, dang, I forgot to mention that in my video.

What I do is I have a spray bottle of water and dish washing soap that I use
I spray it on the top valve and the relief valve

It will blow bubbles and is easy to see if there are any leaks

Sometimes the relief valve sticks a little and you have to pop it a couple times to re-seat it.

Asheville is about 30 minutes away from me, so the gas to get there and back would eat up any savings on the propane
Not sure where there is a Costco, but I have a Tractor supply about 4 miles away from my house

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post #7 of 36 (permalink) Old 12-15-2016, 11:02:PM
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the way you fill the small 1 pound tanks is no different then how they fill 40 pound tanks on forklifts: there is a big tank just like the large propane tanks in peoples backyards, and it has a valve on top near one end with a hose hooked to it, you take the tank off of the forklift and set it upright on the ground, hook the hose to it and open both tanks valves, plus the vent valve on the forklift tank, and fill the forklift tank until liquid propane shoots out the vent valve, close all the valves and unhook the hose. it takes about 10 minutes to fill one. (no pumps, no gauges and no scale to weigh it) man they waste a lot of propane, the forklift operators see the the 10 minute fill time as quick break time, and they come back often 5 or more minutes late, mean while liquid propane has been shooting out the vent valve for 5 minutes!

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post #8 of 36 (permalink) Old 12-16-2016, 07:38:AM
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Originally Posted by Budsky View Post

I think you are in WNC- there is a gas place in Asheville that refills 20 lb tanks on Saturdays for $6, Blossman 170 Sweeten Creek Rd.
Wow you guys are lucky to live down there - the Parkway offers some truly great riding. A little further south and you can access the Smokies, that area is gorgeous.

One of the reasons I am building my van is to spend more time down there and beyond.
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post #9 of 36 (permalink) Old 12-16-2016, 09:33:AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Michael Ophus View Post
the way you fill the small 1 pound tanks is no different then how they fill 40 pound tanks on forklifts: there is a big tank just like the large propane tanks in peoples backyards, and it has a valve on top near one end with a hose hooked to it, you take the tank off of the forklift and set it upright on the ground, hook the hose to it and open both tanks valves, plus the vent valve on the forklift tank, and fill the forklift tank until liquid propane shoots out the vent valve, close all the valves and unhook the hose. it takes about 10 minutes to fill one. (no pumps, no gauges and no scale to weigh it) man they waste a lot of propane, the forklift operators see the the 10 minute fill time as quick break time, and they come back often 5 or more minutes late, mean while liquid propane has been shooting out the vent valve for 5 minutes!
I take my 100 pound tanks to a hardware store and watch them fill them
Same deal, they open a valve and the propane sprays out as it reaches the top of the tank

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post #10 of 36 (permalink) Old 12-16-2016, 09:39:AM Thread Starter
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Wow you guys are lucky to live down there - the Parkway offers some truly great riding. A little further south and you can access the Smokies, that area is gorgeous.

One of the reasons I am building my van is to spend more time down there and beyond.
Actually, I live in Pisgah Forest, NC
About 3 miles outside the official Pisgah Forest entrance

The Parkway is right out my back door
It is a mountain bike mecca here and why I moved here from Florida in 2001

Also it's a trout fishing, rock climbing, paddling and hiking paradise

It's pretty awesome here and it's like being on vacation every day
Here's a pic of the area
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