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Old 03-10-2011, 07:58   #1
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Aluminum Propane Tanks

I have heard that my expensive aluminum Trident propane tanks, (Circa 1979) due to a change in US regulations can no longer be refilled. I have also been told that a simple swap out of the valves to the current standard will allow me to continue to use them.

Since I have a custom built propane locker that is designed to accomidate these tanks, I am wondering if anyone knows what my options are in order continue use.
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Old 03-10-2011, 08:12   #2
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Re: Aluminum Propane Tanks

I changed the valves on both mine at a cost of $65.00 each. Take them to any propane seller that does repairs and they should be able to do it in a week. They may have to order the correct size which would require more time. Easy fix. Places that sell re-fills are prohibited by law from filling your old style.
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Old 03-10-2011, 08:46   #3
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Re: Aluminum Propane Tanks Unusable?

The New Propane Cylinder

Is your Propane cylinder obsolete?

By Derrick Riches, About.com Guide


Do you have a propane tank that was made before September 30, 1998? Well you might be in for a bit of a surprise the next time you go to fill it. As of April 1st, 2002 all new cylinders must be equipped with an Overfill Prevention Device (OPD)...

For the rest of the article;

http://bbq.about.com/cs/suppliespropane/a/aa040602a.htm
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Old 03-10-2011, 08:50   #4
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Re: Aluminum Propane Tanks Unusable?

We had our two aluminum propane tank valves replaced at a local propane company for a nominal fee, along with a pressure test and inspection.

When the above article talks about the cost of replacing the valve being the same for the whole cylinder, they are talking about the common cheap steel tanks, not the expensive aluminum ones.

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Old 03-10-2011, 08:54   #5
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Re: Aluminum Propane Tanks Unusable?

my adapter/valve/whatever was changed out for a tiny fee and mine is usable--i have aluminum. am not gonna change ...
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Old 03-10-2011, 09:26   #6
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Re: Aluminum Propane Tanks Unusable ?

I had the same problem with my aluminum tanks, same vintage. I took them to a propane gas distributor in Fort Myers, Florida and they replaced the valves, recertified and refilled them for $50.00 each. I had a problem getting Amerigas to do the job, but someone later told me they had the job done right there in Fort Myers. Tanks aren't the issue. The fill valve is.

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Old 03-10-2011, 09:32   #7
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Re: Aluminum Propane Tanks Unusable ?

the replacement price of aluminum tanks being 238 or so dollars, changing the valve makes too much sense. most places would rather sell a 238 dollar tank than a 50 dollar or less fitting. replace the fitting and allegedly obsolete tanks are no longer obsolete. is just smart.
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Old 03-10-2011, 09:34   #8
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Re: Aluminum Propane Tanks

Wow! $65 sounds awfully expensive. I replaced the valves myself on a couple of older steel tanks and it only cost me about $20 each for the valves and 15-20 minutes of my time.
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Old 03-10-2011, 10:23   #9
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Re: Aluminum Propane Tanks Unusable ?

I just found out that as per FPA regulations that tanks meant for installation in a horizontal position are exempt from the OPD regulation, Yah Hooo!

Exceptions: NFPA 58, 1998 Edition states the OPD requirement does not apply to cylinders used in industrial trucks, including forklifts trucks, or to cylinders identified and used for industrial welding and cutting gases. The NFPA 58, 2001 Edition broadens the provision to include certain cylinders manufactured before October 1, 1998, and designed for use in the horizontal orientation

http://www.phmsa.dot.gov/portal/site/PHMSA/menuitem.ebdc7a8a7e39f2e55cf2031050248a0c/?vgnextoid=7fbe1db0cc84d110VgnVCM1000009ed07898RCR D&vgnextchannel=90892f5484d87110VgnVCM1000009ed078 98RCRD&vgnextfmt=print#QA_2
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Old 03-10-2011, 10:39   #10
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Re: Aluminum Propane Tanks Unusable ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by cburger View Post
I just found out that as per FPA regulations that tanks meant for installation in a horizontal position are exempt from the OPD regulation, Yah Hooo!

Exceptions: NFPA 58, 1998 Edition states the OPD requirement does not apply to cylinders used in industrial trucks, including forklifts trucks, or to cylinders identified and used for industrial welding and cutting gases. The NFPA 58, 2001 Edition broadens the provision to include certain cylinders manufactured before October 1, 1998, and designed for use in the horizontal orientation

http://www.phmsa.dot.gov/portal/site/PHMSA/menuitem.ebdc7a8a7e39f2e55cf2031050248a0c/?vgnextoid=7fbe1db0cc84d110VgnVCM1000009ed07898RCR D&vgnextchannel=90892f5484d87110VgnVCM1000009ed078 98RCRD&vgnextfmt=print#QA_2
You best carry that document with you when you go to get your tank filled.
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Old 03-10-2011, 10:48   #11
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Re: Aluminum Propane Tanks

Already printed, will laminate this evening!
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Old 03-10-2011, 12:18   #12
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Re: Aluminum Propane Tanks

Because each tank had to be emptied before replacing the valve, the price included full refills. The vessel, its storage compartment and aluminum tanks were made in England. Would have happily paid more.
all the best,
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Old 22-01-2012, 11:48   #13
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Re: Aluminum Propane Tanks

If the tank is old enough to require re-certification the valve is removed anyway so you are only buying the new valve. You can buy and install the valve DIY. I found links and how-to on the internet. To stay legal you need to re-certify anyway. The re-filler will purge the tank of any oxygen you let in.

I would think that a tank with welded on feet for horizontal installation would be obvious. I didn't know there was an exception for horizontal tanks - I was dreading the expense including hoses, valves and regulator. Ours reside in a sealed locker in the lozerette with a vent out the side of the hull. TANKS for pointing this out.
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Old 24-05-2013, 18:28   #14
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Re: Aluminum Propane Tanks

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nicholson58 View Post
If the tank is old enough to require re-certification the valve is removed anyway so you are only buying the new valve. You can buy and install the valve DIY. I found links and how-to on the internet. To stay legal you need to re-certify anyway. The re-filler will purge the tank of any oxygen you let in.

I would think that a tank with welded on feet for horizontal installation would be obvious. I didn't know there was an exception for horizontal tanks - I was dreading the expense including hoses, valves and regulator. Ours reside in a sealed locker in the lozerette with a vent out the side of the hull. TANKS for pointing this out.
This is an old thread, but I just bought 2 tanks like in your pic with the little brass relief valve. Do you know the proper function of that valve?

Mine were made in 98 but last inspected with sticker attached in 2011. Both are in great shape.
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Old 24-05-2013, 23:30   #15
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Re: Aluminum Propane Tanks

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Originally Posted by Boatguy30 View Post
This is an old thread, but I just bought 2 tanks like in your pic with the little brass relief valve. Do you know the proper function of that valve?

Mine were made in 98 but last inspected with sticker attached in 2011. Both are in great shape.
It's like you said, a pressure relief valve. Propane generally peaks at about 125 psi. If the tank overheats it'll dump some of that pressure from the top, not so much of the LPG, just vapors.

Normal cylinders sit up right with a pressure relief valve in the main valve. But laying down they need a secondary relief valve. It's important that the bottle is installed with the pressure relief valve on the high side. That's why there is a pin hole on the bottom side for bottle orientation.
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