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I was planning to use an under-mount tank until I saw the cost nearing $700-$800, and sometimes thought the standard 20lb. tank would always be easier to fill and one could always lug around an extra tank. FarOutRide shows a sealed plywood built locker with a vent hole in the bottom - pretty easy and under $100. Only downside is a loss of interior space and weight at the very rear of the van.

For those that are using a propane Propex heater - what are you using for tanks?
 

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20 lbs tank for ours. Weight is not that much, especially in relation to everything else in our build.

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11 pound tank doesn't take up much space. Box doesn't look terrible. 1" hole straight through the bottom with a fitting. Flex-seal on all joints. Held steady with pressure-fit from neoprene-taped mounts.

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20 lb tank in the vented locker to the right of the Propex.
Easy to refill or swap out.
Secured inside with a heavy camlock strap and E-track anchors
into the van body so the tank it's going nowhere in a crash.
And an inexpensive Mopeka Bluetooth tank monitor
and allows me to monitor the level from my phone.

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I used this external tank, at the time it was about $500. mounted it underneath the van directly behind the drivers side door. there was a space there where the tank fit right between the frame members.
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I just followed the advice of my Canadian boat heater manufacturer, Only the propane regulator needs to be vented.
They included a fitting on the regulator for a screw on vent hose.
My tank has been under my bed for over five years now, The under bed area is semi sealed from the living space but it is not a air tight seal.
Last time I brought this vented propane regulator idea everybody thought I was crazy.
 

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I went with a propane locker for ease of refill. I have horizontal 20# tanks that slide into my propane locker under my bed. Standard BBQ tanks would have been preferable, but I couldn't make the form factor work in the space I had. I have been really happy with this setup. We use a ton of propane because of how we use the van, so having two separate tanks allows us to fully empty the tanks before refill. Also, it is much easier to just take the tanks out instead of having to crawl under the van in the snowy slop.

I would recommend the propane solenoid. It is a really nice feature.

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Kabouter, can you provide link to the solenoid you used?

Here’s one I am aware of: AFC-121R High Pressure 12 Volt Solenoid Valve.

Some of these can be used ONLY on high pressure side. Some people complain some solenoids overheat and fail…but I don’t know which ones are better or worse.

By the way, I have the smaller 8” horizontal under mount tank from GoWesty. Agree, they are now way overpriced. I recently used my Propex for 5 nights, and am down to 1/4 tank…although I’m not sure the station completely filled it prior to that. I didn’t have a gauge at the time. Exchangeable / portable tanks do make sense if you can spare the space inside, and make or buy a locker.

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@ Ranxerox: can you provide more details/pictures of the adapter for venting the regulator?
 

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Same dilemma here Dake...I'd MUCH prefer it being outside but the cost versus benefit has become a tough one to swallow. I'd venture to guess the install and refill is a wash for the most part so the next big variable is inside space.
Sizewise Gregoryx 11 pounder at roughly 9"x"9x18" is pretty manageable but integrating into your design provides complexity - It has to be placed on the floor for venting purposes and most likely a top loader. Presumably you'll also want to shut it off so you'll also need access. Lots of variables..
I think I could keep this 11 pounder inside my wheel wells but am unsure since I don't have my van yet. I plan to do a modular moto bike sleeper build with wheel well depth side cabinets to support removable bed and house a 100+ watt solar system, Propex heater and storage. Access to my side cabinets will be from the side and NOT top so there lies my current dilemma with the inside propane tank.
Anyhow...perhaps the outside storage tank cost is simply worth it?
 

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Kabouter, can you provide link to the solenoid you used?

Here’s one I am aware of: AFC-121R High Pressure 12 Volt Solenoid Valve.

Some of these can be used ONLY on high pressure side. Some people complain some solenoids overheat and fail…but I don’t know which ones are better or worse.

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I have the one suggested by FarOutRide. But I had bought it before reading this post. I would go with the ACC19-04 Lockoff valve linked here and discussed in the below post:


I figure, when mine dies, I will just replace it (hopefully not while we are camping in sub-zero temperatures).
 

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I would recommend the propane solenoid. It is a really nice feature.
What do you perceive of as the biggest advantages of having a solenoid vs the identical system without the solenoid?
 

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Undermount w/GoWesty 5.9 gal tank below slider door. Also have a quick connect for bbq or fire ring.
 

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I am going to go with the standard 20lb bbq tank in a locker for quick swap outs just about anywhere.

I have thought about a tank mounted underneath, but the cost right now is just too much for my budget.
 

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@ Ranxerox: can you provide more details/pictures of the adapter for venting the regulator?
You will have to order their regulator because you do not find threaded vent ports very often, The adapter the just a flared fitting you buy at the hardware store and a short piece of propane hose stuck in a hole in the floor.

 

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When deciding between an inside vs outside propane tank, it is important to remember that the outside tank will fail you when you need it the most.

When the temperature drops to around -40F the liquid propane in the tank will not be able to convert to gas. It won't work until the propane warms up.

This problem disappears with an inside tank, as long as the inside is kept heated.
 

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@ Ranxerox: can you provide more details/pictures of the adapter for venting the regulator?
After digging into this idea I believe the a tube is needed at the tank on the relief/safety valve which is opposite the connector. The vent on the regulator is there to allow the backside of the pressure diagram to move without pressure building up and not to vent propane. This first diagram shows this function at #9. The second shows one way to attach a clear vinyl tube to the relief/safety valve. The last diagram shows the functions of the tank valve with a threaded relief valve (threaded ones are found on larger tanks).

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