View Full Version : Propane tank OPD question

Fred Voorhees
09-13-2005, 7:48 PM
Got a quick question here guys for anyone who may have an answer. I went to get three twenty pound propane tanks filled and/or topped off today in preparation for our upcoming camping vacation. About a month ago, one of these three tanks was on our grill and my wife said it was out of gas. I removed it and it was obviously not empty. I dismissed it then because I had so much to do besides investigating that situation.

Anyway, today while getting them filled, that same tank didn't fill all the way and the dude doing the filling told me that sometimes, the Overfill Protection Device fouled up some how and would not allow the tank to be filled. He told me to "watch this" and he proceeded to bang the tank (in the upright position) on the ground. It then proceeded to continue to fill to its capacity.

Now, I'm guessing here that since the OPD will sometimes not allow the tank to fill to its capacity, would that also mean that it would also not allow the complete contents to empty - or in other words - be used? That would explain my wifes thinking that that tank was empty while she was trying to use the grill.

Really not that big of a deal since I now plan on replacing the tank after this trip. Not worth the eventual PITA situations it might cause. But, I was curious. Anybody have any knowledge of this?

Don Baer
09-13-2005, 7:55 PM
I recenly had 3 of my tanks filled and when I put one on the Grill no gas would come out. It was the second time for that so I figured on replacing it. The I got to thinking that when I had those tanks filled it was a little cooler weather (78-80*) then when I was trying to use it (100*+) so I vented off some gas and the tank was fine. I figured that the gas must have expanded due to the heat and somehow closed the valve. I store the tanks out side. It only happend to 1 of the tanks but I will be watching it closely and replace it if it happens again.

Norman Hitt
09-13-2005, 11:33 PM
Fred, these valves do mess up quite often. There was a post a while back about this with some good remedies and explanations, that you might want to search for. I think the general consensus was, (IIRC) to open the valve "very slowly" until it is flowing good. There might have been more to it, if you can find that thread.

Jeff Sudmeier
09-14-2005, 8:24 AM
Yeah, these tanks are a pita. I camp a lot and the valves on them do fail quite often. All because those filling the tanks didn't know how to fill them!