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Old 12-22-2018, 12:50 AM   #1
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THOR #12189
Propane Tank

This post eventually asks the question: "How does this work and what can I do about it". I took the long way there and that becomes apparent, later. There's smart people here and most will converge on a common answer. If not, no foul no harm. I'm back where I started.

I filled my propane tank. Some of you know that thread. After I got back, I started smelling propane whenever I walked behind the rig or opened the propane door and it would quickly dissipate. This happened once before but not to this degree. I figured the increased amount that resulted from the fill (pressure) changed the dynamics and I was getting more of what I thought was someone else. I conducted the ‘smell test’ about three times in the span of an hour and broke out the soapy water. I found a leak. Pic#1

I was able to secure the leak, through sheer dumb luck. I actually had to work the plug back and forth to get it to stop leaking. I don't know why. Definitely right-hand threads. I finally landed on a spot that passed the soapy water test. I tested it for 2 days, found microscopic bubbles and readjusted. No more bubbles (I inspected with a magnifying glass to ensure). The green you see is a result of the soapy water tests and not corrosion.

Here's what I know (rather 'discovered'). When the plug was in its prior position, the gauge sat straight. 1/2 full was at TDC with 1/4 to the left and 3/4 to the right. The way one would expect it to be.

I noticed the gauge had two, round metal receptors on the back. These receptors ride inside the plugs recess where the label is located. It would seem these track a float inside the tank to measure capacity. I suspect that but don't know it.

The gauge only fits on the plug one way. The outside edges of the plug seem keyed, the gauge's plastic clips are 'keyed' to only fit on the plug one way. The gauge is tied to the plug. The gauge also feeds the LPG reading on the interior control panel (see wire splices - I bought it like that). I’m getting different readings depending on how I position the gauge in the propane bay.

Problem: Does someone know how this works and whether I can put this back where it needs to be to be right? I suspect someone positioned the plug so the gauge would be right with total disregard for a potential leak. I find that hard to believe but not completely impossible.
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Old 12-22-2018, 02:04 AM   #2
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Looks like you rotated the float unit from straight up to 5 o’clock. You won’t get a good reading now. Look at this - http://www.rochestergauges.com/products/8944-04.html

Now, what the heck were you thinking to put a wrench on a full and leaking propane tank? Ever hear of the Darwin Award? Before you do something like that again ask yourself if you would win one. We had a saying in the Navy - there are bold technicians and there are old technicians but there are no bold old technicians.
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Old 12-22-2018, 02:56 AM   #3
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THOR #1150
Twice now when we've got our tank filled in the winter the check valve froze open and leaked. It took the guy filling a few minutes of playing with it to un-stick the check valve.
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Old 12-22-2018, 03:01 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimbo12 View Post
Looks like you rotated the float unit from straight up to 5 o’clock. You won’t get a good reading now. Look at this - 8944-04 Magnetic Liquid-Level Motor Fuel Gauge

Now, what the heck were you thinking to put a wrench on a full and leaking propane tank? Ever hear of the Darwin Award? Before you do something like that again ask yourself if you would win one. We had a saying in the Navy - there are bold technicians and there are old technicians but there are no bold old technicians.
Thank you for that link. LOL and I hear you. We had a saying in the Air Force. Ye who works on an ungrounded jet soon finds heaven really fast. I discharged the static before laying the wrench to the tank

I stopped the leak - priority one. 5 vs. 12 really wasn't on my mind at the moment. I don't know that I can fix this. The level doesn't leak in this position.
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Old 12-22-2018, 05:35 AM   #5
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THOR #12181
Option 1
Go to a propane company, A larger supplier not a reseller like a hardware store. They may be able to pump out the propane and fix your problem.

option 2
Use it till the propane is gone and then carefully vent out the last of it. Remove the gauge clean and reseal with new propane sealant. let it cure a bit and refill.
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Old 12-22-2018, 11:35 AM   #6
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THOR #5196
You should take your RV to a professional and have it repaired. Over the years I have seen more than one fire caused by a propane leak and don’t want it to happen to you!!!
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Old 12-22-2018, 01:51 PM   #7
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THOR #12189
Quote:
Originally Posted by sanjaun2 View Post
Option 1
Go to a propane company, A larger supplier not a reseller like a hardware store. They may be able to pump out the propane and fix your problem.

option 2
Use it till the propane is gone and then carefully vent out the last of it. Remove the gauge clean and reseal with new propane sealant. let it cure a bit and refill.
Option 2 has crossed my mind more than a few times.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SuperD View Post
You should take your RV to a professional and have it repaired. Over the years I have seen more than one fire caused by a propane leak and don’t want it to happen to you!!!
I'm leaning hard that way. Thank you for the sentiment.
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Old 12-22-2018, 02:06 PM   #8
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THOR #8860
The advice about letting the Professionals play with it; is sound!
Good luck, and please let us know what they find, and how they fix it!
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