Few human being know i was a typical propane filling device in my high school days in ~ Taylor Hardware. As a result, I know a couple of things about tank tare weights (an north tank"s weight) and other propane lingo.

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For the critical 7 year I had actually my trusty Weber grill hooked right into a 500 gallon secret tank in ~ the house in Taylors. When I moved previously this year to an all-electric home I had actually to switch back to a standard 20 lb BBQ grill tank. I likewise considered 30, 33, 40, 60, and also 100 pound cylinders, to prevent refilling together often. I uncovered that new 30 or 33 lb cylinders space at least double the price that a 20 lb, and also finding lightly offered ones top top Craigslist wasn"t happening.

I choose up a brand-new 20 lb tank at the residence Depot because that 29.97, minus 10% off rivals coupon and also a 10% discount ~ above a gift card purchased top top eBay. (Costco selling tanks because that 28.99 contrasted to Amazon"s around $45). Now, where to to fill it?

A tiny About Propane Tanks

These "20 lb" tanks room designed to take up to 20 pounds of propane. You may gain a pound or 2 less, depending upon the temperature that the tank and surrounding air once the tank was filled. Cooler = much more propane in, name is = less in. Tanks have the right to actually fit an additional 20% in the tank, however that extra space is draft for expansion as the temperature rises.

In very cold winter climates, favor Canada, there may be more concern/rules about filling a tank come a finish 20 lbs. This is due to the fact that if you leave a tank outside in very cold temps, to fill the tank when the tank is cold, and also then bring it into a warm basement/garage because that a space heater, the gas will expand as the tank warms. With sufficient of a temperature increase, the tank"s pressure relief worth will relax a little of gas. This would certainly be less of an issue if the relief worth were bleeding to exterior air.


All propane tanks have actually a "tare weight" or "T.W." stamped top top the collar that the tank. Because that a grill size tank you just calculate the tare load + 20 lbs, and also that"s just how much the tank need to weigh as soon as it"s full. Many 20 lb tanks have a tare load of +/- 17 pounds when completely empty. This means a "full" propane tank have to weigh around 37 pounds.

There is additionally a month and year ~ above the collar describe the date the tank was made. For 20 lb propane tanks, you have actually 12 years from the produce date prior to the tank must be re-certified v a brand-new date stamped top top it. The re-certification only adds 5 years prior to having come re-certify again. The cost and inconvenience the re-certifying virtually always outweighs the price of a brand-new tank.

Brand new propane tanks might come v air inside and need to it is in "purged" prior to the first fill. Some newer tanks, choose Bernzomatic, will have a sticker ~ above them saying they don"t should be purged within 6 months of the manufacture date.

Purging requires a special adapter to enable a tiny amount the propane in. The pressure then pushes air the end of a one-way bleeder valve. Purging may include another $3-4 dollars come a brand-new tank, despite some areas don"t charge, specifically if girlfriend buy the tank from them.

The math on Refills in ~ Costco

Internet searches indicate the following:

1 gallon the propane weighs 4.2 poundsA "full" 20 lb cylinder should have actually 4.7 gallons or propane in it

I called around and the local U-Haul ar wanted $16 for a refill. I remember Costco has a authorize for $9.99 refills. I believed I was getting a an excellent deal, however it transforms out i pretty much acquired no deal.


Costco in Greenville, SC is a bit deceiving due to the fact that they very first hand you a slip that says "20 lb cylinder". When you pay inside the receipt claims "20lb PROPANE", and also the filling publish out claims "Cylinder: 20S lbs." The just defense is the the filling print out is honest and also says "3.6 gallons". However, no one knows off the height of your head the a propane tank is claimed to have 4.7 gallons come be taken into consideration "full". By saying 3.6 gallons, they are masking the truth that they placed in 75%. If they wanted to it is in upfront they"d speak "we will put 15 lbs that propane right into this 20 lb cylinder".

This method Costco put in 15 lb that propane.

3.6 gallons / 4.7 gallons = 75% that the common fill.

or, said one more way

(4.2 pounds/gallons) * (3.6 gallons) = 15 pounds

The indigenous on the web forums is the the Blue Rhino and also AmeriGas comparable exchange services placed in 75%, or 15 lbs.

If you do the math on Costco, it"s actually not a bad price. It"s in line, if no cheaper, 보다 paying $16 because that a complete 20 lbs. Though, Costco"s use of the "20 lb" expression is unfortunate. Ns think their an inspiration is to have a cheaper price, for this reason members think lock are obtaining a an excellent deal. Plus, by just filling 75% they make members come back more often, and go within to shop while they wait.

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ConclusionIf you"re searching for the finest price, owning a propane tank and re-filling that is walk to it is in cheaper than utilizing an exchange service. As always, you pay a premium because that convenience.Ask just how much propane is going right into the cylinder. There should be 20 pounds walking in for full capacity.Weigh the tank once you obtain home and also it must be about 37 pounds. If it weighs 31-32 pounds climate you recognize they just put in 15 lbs that propane.Costco"s propane price is quiet fair when you perform the math.Bonus - Weber Grills

I likewise assembled the grills at Taylor Hardware. Weber Grills to be by far the ideal we sold. Reasonable care and also a sheathe will conveniently give your Weber grill 10-20 year of life. You can buy various other cheap brands and also they will have steel components that rust out in 2-3 years. You have the right to buy a fancy looking stainless steel brand from home Depot and also it will likely not rust, yet it will chef unevenly or the take care of or wheels will certainly break off and also you"ll be ago to the save in 5 years for a brand-new grill.

Bonus - next Burners

I likewise helped market the BBQ grills. We offered a couple of with side burners, yet we never pushed them. I recall many conversations v customers who had paid much more for a side burner in the past and never offered it, regardless of their best intentions. Chances are the you will usage the side burner when or twice, therefore don"t spend the money unless you are absolutely sure you"re walking to usage it