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Old 09-07-2008, 12:42   #1
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Propane oven and BBQ on one tank / regulator question

Hi Folks,

When i bought my boat last year it had an oven, with functioning solenoid, and tank with valve and regulator.

I purchased a "normal" Marine BBQ with it's own regulator valve, where I can connect the little green propane tanks. Works fine with them.

I wanted to use my main tank for both the oven and BBQ, sao I had a local propane shop but a tee on the main bottle, and bought a hose to go to the BBQ.

As you might guess, this didn't work - As the Tee is after the tanks regulator, it seems that I am regulating the flow twice, as I must connect to the BBQ valve/ regulator, as well.

I talked to another propane shop today, who said that It is against code to put a tee in the high pressure line, on the tank before the regulator.

Is that correct? How do you guys have your's hooked up?

Thanks in advance!!
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Old 09-07-2008, 13:18   #2
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FWIW, West Marine sells a high pressure tee adapter intended for use exactly as you need. Also, if your BBQ is a Magma, WM sells a low pressure control which replaces the regulator on the BBQ. All this doesn't answer the "code" question though.
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Old 09-07-2008, 15:26   #3
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I've used the high pressure T set-up for years. There is a shut-off in the T that stops gas flow when the hose is removed.
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Old 09-07-2008, 19:28   #4
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Thanks for the replies. No West Marine nearby, but I do have a good local store an hour away. I will drop by and see them.

Just wanted to make sure that it was possible. I know someone that tried to get a standard portable BBQ working on his RV's propane system. But, after failed attempts, he finally broke down and bought the overpriced RV dealer BBQ, that comes with no regulator, just a quick connect hose adapter, and lever-type shutoff valve.

Thanks again!
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Old 09-07-2008, 19:33   #5
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Also, FYI, you can't have a tee for any reason inside the boat - insurance companies don't like that. OK in the propane locker...

Cheers,
Steve
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Old 09-07-2008, 19:40   #6
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A BBQ uses 1 Lb of pressure and your stove uses a higher pressure. If you run the BBQ on the same pressure as the oven you'll make temperatures well above 600 degrees. You'll BBQ at temperatures so high it will incinerate the whole meal. There is not problem having two regulators. I do it on the house all the time. I have a 300 gallon tank in the fromt yard and two regualtors on the grill. The first one was far too high. You need the lower pressure on the BBQ. You will trash the grill at 2 lbs of pressure and not be able to cook anything except on high.

You can get a regulator at any propane dealer in the US. If they don't know what you need then they have serious problem.
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Old 10-07-2008, 06:09   #7
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Good tip about the T being outside - yes, it would be in the propane locker!

Paul - When I tried it with the tank valve and regulator, as well as the BBQ regulator, there was barely any flame, even when the BBQ regulator was on high!

I then called the BBQ company (I believe it's a KUma / Force 10). They advised me that I could adjust the screw in the BBQ regulator to increase the flame. I did this, and it increased it somewhat - however, the big problem was that the OFF setting on the BBQ would now leak propane through all of the time, and i had to shut off the tank valve.

Therefore I couldn't use my oven, with the BBQ hose hooked up! I noticed the "leak" as the guage would go to zero quickly (like 30 seconds or less). When the hose was unscrewed from the BBQ regulator, it would not leak. Also, this meant that I had to light the BBQ quickly, as the propane started "leaking" as soon as I opened the tank valve.

I tried adjusting it severla times, but always had either a low flame, or a "leak" in OFF position. I even had them send me another regulator, in case it was defective - Kuma sent it Free of charge - THANKS!! However, it had the same problem.

What am I missing???
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Old 10-07-2008, 07:11   #8
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The grill should operate at 1 pound of pressure. As far as a T goes I have one at the house since we use propane at home. The ht water and firnace use the pressure off the tank and they both have their own regualtors. The grill actually has two regualtors since the one that was installed was not low enough. The grill on the deck quickly could go over 700 degrees. Adding a second regualtor solved it. The regualtor either deilvers 1 pound or it does not.

If the grill leaks in the off position then you obviously have a leak. With the valve wide open at one pound it won't leak very much since the opening is much bigger than any leak. It's not good to have any leak. You should be able to shut off the burner and not leak at all. The leak has to be fixed.

Are all the pipe threads sealed? Other than the compression fitting on the tank all the rest should be sealed. You can get yellow pipe seal tape at Lowes or Home Depot. It's amazing stuff and I use it for water pipe threads as well. It's thicker than white teflon tape and is resistent to 500 degrees F and rated to 100 pounds. It costs under $4 for a roll. You usually only need two wraps to make it seal well. Never use the white teflon tape with propane.

Once you fix the leak you can then readjust the burner.
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Old 10-07-2008, 07:41   #9
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Hi Paul,

Thanks for taking the time to discuss this!

I don't actaully have a leak, if I adjust the BBQ regulator to it's factory position. It will hold pressure in the OFF position then!! However, as mentioned, I only get a very small flame on the BBQ, even in the HIGH position. I believe that is beacuse it is being regulated once by the tank regulator, and then again by the BBQ regulator. AS mentioned also, the BBQ works fine with the small green "disposable" propane bottles, which I believe are high pressure, as they do not have a regulator.

Is it possible that your house set-up is differnet because of other factors.
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Old 10-07-2008, 07:51   #10
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Quote:
I believe that is because it is being regulated once by the tank regulator, and then again by the BBQ regulator.
That would not be the case. If you connected 3 - 1 pound regulators in series the grill would work. There should not be a problem with that. You may find that not all regulators are exactly the same. I had the problem where the pressure should have been fine but was clearly too high. You have the reverse problem. If you need 1 pound to run the grill then if you had one pound going into the one pound regulator it should still be one pound. While not perfectly lossless the adjustment knob on the grill should make up any possible difference. You may have a blockage some place. You may have a problem running an oven and the grill at the same time if the tank level is very low.

I'm confused about your above post that mentions the leak. If the gage drops that fast it leaks.
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Old 10-07-2008, 08:04   #11
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Paul - Yes, I used the term "leak" in quotation marks - to say that there was a flow through the BBQ regulator, while in the OFF position, when I tried adjusting the regulator to allow more flow. It is NOT a real leak, as it does not happen if I adjust the regulator back to it's factory postition - where the OFF setting really does stop all flow, and the tank guage holds it's pressure.

I do appreciate the advice / concern, as you read, and thought that I had a real leak - obviously that would be serious!!

You are correct. I do have too low of a pressure. I just assumed, perhaps incorectly, as you pointed out, that having two regulators in line wpould reduce the flow more. The propane guy that I talked to yesterday, who did not want to put a Tee off the high pressure side of the tank (for housing code reasons) said that two regulators in line would be a problem.

I see that my local marine store does sell tank Tees, that say you can connect both oven and BBQ. As for running them both - I never had the oven on while tyring the BBQ anyway, so that does not explain the low flame!
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Old 10-07-2008, 14:25   #12
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Originally Posted by Pblais View Post
I do it on the house all the time.
Household propane systems are not the same as boat systems. Household systems generally use a 2 stage regulator system. The first stage requlator reduces the pressure from the tank to the gas supply line to the house. The 1st stage regulator usually mounted to the tank itself and in the US, colored red. The 1st stage regulator will compensate for differing tank pressures and will deliver propane into the gas line at a pressure of 10 pounds or less.

2nd stage regulators work with propane at a pressure supplied by the first stage regulator (inlet pressure) and further decrease that to a pressure that can be used by appliances (outlet pressure). Most outlet pressures of second stage regulators are measured in inches water column, such as 11" water column (0.4PSI). This is the standard propane pressure delivered to household appliances so that they can safely and properly operate. In a household installation, the second stage regulator is commonly found outside the house at the point where the gas line goes into the house. 2nd stage regulators can also be located at the appliance itself.

Just guessing here but Pblais' situation where the BBQ reached 700 degrees was probably due to T'ing off of the gas line prior to the 2nd stage requlator which would cause 10 pounds of gas pressure to the delivered to the BBQ when only a little less than 1/2 pound was needed . Adding another 2nd stage regulator at the BBQ fixed that problem.

Boat systems use a single regulator the reduces the tank pressure to the standard 11" of water column or 0.4 PSI because these systems do not need to push gas through yards of gas line, nor are the tanks generally large enough to cause large pressure variances due to tempurature effects. My old Magna BBQ required 0.4 PSI to operate, as does my Force 10 galley stove, and my new Solaire infrared BBQ requires the same pressure. 11" of water column is the standard gas pressure for all propane gas appliances whether they are for household use, RV use, or use aboard our boats.

Putting an 0.4 PSI regulator after an existing 0.4 PSI regulator will not work. There is simply not enough pressure to make the second regulator in line work.

Hope that helps .
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Old 10-07-2008, 18:06   #13
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Rodney - thanks for the detailed explanation. Yes, it did help. I will have to stop by the marine store and buy the proper higher pressure tee, and extra hose, in order to get it to work - or put up with teh green bottles until I do!!

Thanks again!
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