How Long Does an RV Propane Tank Last

A propane tank is a crucial part of your RV, especially when you are on a long tour. Whether you have to cook, need hot water, or run the heater, a propane tank comes into …

Disclosure: We earn a commission for products purchased through some links in this article.

A propane tank is a crucial part of your RV, especially when you are on a long tour. Whether you have to cook, need hot water, or run the heater, a propane tank comes into play. Therefore, having knowledge about the capacity of the tank your RV has and how much it will last comes really handy. In this article, we will see different kinds of Propane tanks and how long Propane last in an RV.

Types of Propane Tanks for RV

So, now that you know how vital Propane is for an RV, you must have thought that there would be different varieties of Propane that could be used for different purposes. Mainly there are two types of propane tanks. One of them is the ASME tank, and the other one is the DOT cylinder tank.

Let’s first talk about the ASME tank and how long it could last. ASME tanks are in-built RV Propane tanks that are not removable and are mounted to one side of the RV.

ASME propane tanks come in different sizes and also, and they have various storage capacities. Therefore, ASME propane tanks for RV are also quite popular with the name RV Horizontal Propane tanks. One of the most convenient things to discuss in ASME tanks is the gauge that tells you how much Propane is still left in the tank, and hence, you can fill up the remaining accordingly.

ASME Propane Tank

propane tank

Although ASME tanks are of good sizes, if you still think that the one that is equipped with your RV is not good enough for you, then you can always go for upgrading it to a larger one. However, if you are to do so, it is advisable that you consult with a professional before doing this and take help from them for easy upgrades and installation.

DOT Cylinder Tanks

DOT Cylinder Tanks

A DOT cylinder tank is quite different from an RV. Unlike ASME tanks, they are not attached to the RV and can be removed for refilling the tank. In addition, they are portable, compact, and easy to install; hence, they are different from ordinary ASME tanks.

Propane Tank – 20 Pounds

Propane Tank   20 Pounds

The 20 – Pound Propane tank has a low storage capacity. These tanks are easily available and accessible in any nearest hardware store. Also you can find them in some grocery stores as well. The 20 Pounds Propane tank is the most straightforward available tank that you can find everywhere. However, the only drawback of this tank is that they hold low Propane, and thus you cannot be dependent on them if you are going on a long road trip with your RV.

Propane Tank – 33 Pounds

Propane Tank  33 Pounds

This one comes in a bigger size and can hold a large amount of Propane in it. Therefore, the storage capacity is quite good, and also this tank is readily available. However, this tank is not as available as the 20 pounds tank, and you will not find them in your nearby grocery store, but yes, you can find them in your nearest hardware stores. You can also trade them for an empty one.

One good thing about this tank is that you will be refilling it less, so it will save you money for a longer duration. The 20 Pounds tank will cost you less, but you will need to keep refilling it, which will cost you money. The same is not the case with 33 pounds tank as it will be pretty expensive to purchase, but if one is purchased, then you need not refill it every time before you go on a road trip.

Moreover, these tanks are significant because of their immense storage capacity; they are also quite bulky and heavy. Therefore, it will be difficult for you to remove them for refilling and attaching them on the side of the RV every time. So, we can safely say that it won’t be compact and easy to be installed. This is the one drawback of the 33 Pounds Propane Tank for RV.

Estimating Propane Use in RV Tanks

So, one of the most important things we need to consider is how long Propane lasts in an RV. Unfortunately, it is difficult to determine because many factors are involved in estimating this. Furthermore, to determine how long Propane lasts in an RV, you first need to understand how and in what ways Propane is used in an RV.

Most commonly, Propane is used to run furnaces, stoves, ovens, and hot water. However, there could also be some appliances that one can run using Propane, depending on the RV owner. So, the first factor on which the duration of propane tanks last is their usability.

If you are ready to visit places with warm temperatures, you won’t need to heat water or run the heater; hence, it will save some amount of the Propane.

Another point to be taken care of while gauging how long Propane lasts in an RV  is how often you use hot water in the shower. If you use it daily, then the amount of Propane that will be spent would be large enough. However, if you don’t use the shower often, you will also save some of the Propane, and hence it will go longer and longer.

One thing that we would like to tell you from our personal experience is that if you are near a gas station and the Propane is less than half a tank, then you should refill it up. Of course, it is not mandatory that it won’t run till last, but playing safe is always advisable. So, if you are near a gas station, then surely you should fill up your tank.

However, it also depends on the size of the tank. If you have a large tank, then you can afford to go on your trip if you have less than half Propane left in your tank because it would still be enough to run till the very last. But if you have a small size tank and the amount of Propane is less, then you should fill it up.

How Much Propane Do You Need?

The very first step to determine how long the Propane in your tank is going to last is determining the size of the propane tank. So, we will advise you to take your empty tank to the gas station and fill it up. Once it is filled then, you take a look at your receipt and check how many gallons were needed to fill an empty tank.

This will help you determine what the actual size of your propane tank is and how much Propane is required to fill the tank.

After that, take a look at the demand for your stove, heater, furnace, and all the other appliances that you run on Propane.

These demands will be varying according to how much you use them so it won’t be a constant number, but we can determine an average range for it.

This range will be helpful in determining the amount of Propane required to calculate how long it will last. Now, once you are done with this, you need to sum all these numbers up, and that will be your final requirement for Propane. Finally, divide this number by the number of gallons you need to fill the tank, which will be your final result of the Propane required to run your RV.

In the End…

So far, we have discussed almost everything on Propane for RV and how you can calculate an estimated amount of Propane needed to run your RV. However, these numbers can never be the exact number to run your RV because all the factors we have considered are dynamic, not static. But this will give you an estimate and a rough idea of how long Propane lasts in an RV.

Leave a Comment