propane tank fittings

Types of Common Propane Tanks to Work With

Please note the information listed in this article is for informative purposes only. Propane Warehouse advises that all work must be done by a qualified installer in accordance with all industry standards and zoning regulations.

Propane can be stored in either an American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) propane tank or a DOT propane gas cylinder.

Portable tanks are made of welded steel or aluminum. You can see these cylinders attached to a BBQ or in an RV; they are generally small and mobile. Cylinders are used and replaced or can be refilled by qualified refillers with the right equipment or at refilling establishments.

To see our full selection of aluminum or steel propane tanks, click here.

Large volume propane tanks are made of welded steel. These gas tanks are generally larger, heavier and thicker than propane gas cylinders. These are commonly seen at some gas stations, businesses, or remote establishments. ASME tanks are immobile; tank refill is done on-site.

RV Propane Tanks

rv propane hoses and fittings

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These days many new RV’s are fitted with solar panels with the idea of cleaner energy in mind; for most RV’s, propane tanks are the powering force behind the many creature comforts we expect to have with us, including air-conditioning, cooking equipment, entertainment devices, hot water, and refrigeration.

Know Your RV

Most new RV’s are designed to be hooked up with propane; some older models may require the use of a converted generator.

Steel propane cylinders for RVs also come in ASME form, and the choice between the two depends on the usage and size of the RV.

ASME 

ASME tanks are fastened to the RV and will commonly have a bash guard for added safety. The tanks can be fastened under the vehicle with the fittings and valves accessible through the bash guard. ASME tanks are considered the safer option because of their thicker walls.

Tank Size

Tank sizes for RV’s can range from 20lb to 90lb or more, and it depends on the size of the RV. Here are some examples of RV propane tank weight and storage capacity:

  • 52lb steel RV tank – 7.9 gallon tank
  • 65lb steel RV tank – 9.8 gallon tank
  • 72lb steel RV tank – 11.2 gallon tank
  • 97lb steel RV tank – 29.3 gallon tank

Changing Cylinders 

Some RV’s have multiple DOT cylinders; these can be mounted on the outside or in an outer compartment of an RV for quick and easy removal and replacement.

If you need a tank exchange, you can easily swap out your empty cylinders at most RV campgrounds, RV parks, or gas stations.

Cylinder Size

Generally, 20, 30, or 40 lb gas cylinders are used, depending on the size of the RV and the needs of the user. For larger RV’s, 60lb cylinders are available; these large cylinders have a storage capacity of 13.7 gallons.

Here are some examples of RV propane cylinder weight and storage capacity:

  • 20lb propane cylinder with a storage capacity of 4.7 gallons
  • 40lb propane cylinder with a storage capacity of 9.2 gallons
  • 60lb propane cylinder with a storage capacity of 13.7 gallons

Stove and Grilling or BBQ Propane Tanks

quick connect propane hose

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Propane cylinders are perfect for cooking when used correctly, they are a safe and reliable fuel source. Propane also burns clean; this makes propane perfect for cooking use. 

One 20lb propane cylinder can provide up to 20 hours of cooking time; then the cylinder must be replaced, it is best to have a spare cylinder for cooking, since the gas may run out at an inconvenient time. 

BBQ propane cylinders are normally quite small, ranging from 20lb to 40lb cylinders. Here are some examples of cooking propane cylinder weight and storage capacity:

Water Heater Propane Tanks

house propane regulator

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Water heaters are commonly run on electricity, natural gas, and propane. Propane water heaters are regarded as a more cost-effective solution when compared with electric heaters. 

Propane water heaters heat water faster than electric water heaters, giving you hot water when you need it.  Propane gas water heaters come in two forms: tank type and tankless. 

Tank Water Heaters

Tank type water heaters heat up the water in the tank and keep it at an even temperature, even when it is not in use. This is extremely inefficient, the water may not be used for days, but the heater will continue heating the water indefinitely using your home propane. These heaters also take up a significant amount of space, although much smaller than a residential propane tank.

Tankless Water Heaters

Tankless heaters take up much less space and are far more efficient; these can be installed in a much smaller area. Tankless propane gas water heaters do not use any gas until it is needed, the heater turns on and heats water as it passes through to the faucet. This difference in design can make a huge difference in costs to the user.

Which is Best

Choose a tankless heater if possible, the upfront costs will be higher, but the savings will more than make up the difference. Some tankless water heater manufacturers state that the difference in price can be made up in just a few months.

Placement

Propane tanks should be installed at a minimum of 10 feet away from the home heating unit for safety reasons, check your local laws for the required distance.

Size of the Propane Tank or Cylinder 

Sizes of propane tanks for water heaters can vary, both ASME tanks and residential propane cylinders may be used. Multiple DOT cylinder use is possible. Here are some examples of this type of propane tank weight and storage capacity:

  • 52lb steel tank with a storage capacity of 7.9 gallon tank
  • 65lb steel tank with a storage capacity of 9.8 gallons
  • 72lb steel tank with a storage capacity of 11.2 gallons
  • 97lb steel tank with a storage capacity of 29.3 gallons

Here are some examples of this type of tanks’¬†weight and storage capacity:

  • 40lb propane cylinder with a storage capacity of 9.2 gallons
  • 60lb propane cylinder with a storage capacity of 13.7 gallons
  • 100lb propane cylinder with a storage capacity of 24.4 gallons
  • 420lb propane cylinder with a larger tank capacity of 100 gallons

Welding Equipment Propane Tanks

propane accessories

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Propane and acetylene can be used for cutting and brazing metals. Acetylene burns at a higher temperature, but with the right torch and the right technique, propane can achieve a similar cut speed. Brazing is used to fuse two pieces of metal together.

Propane cylinders for cutting and brazing are normally 40 to 100lb cylinders; sizes vary depending on the workload and type of use (commercial, domestic). Here are some examples of cutting and brazing propane cylinder weight and storage capacity:

  • 40lb propane cylinder with a storage capacity of 9.2 gallons
  • 60lb propane cylinder with a storage capacity of 13.7 gallons
  • 100lb propane cylinder with a storage capacity of 24.4 gallons

Propane Powered Forklifts and Tow Motors 

propane tank adapter

Forklifts or, also referred to as, tow motors are mostly powered by propane cylinders or electricity; they come in many forms: side loader forklifts, warehouse forklifts, counterbalance forklifts, and rough terrain forklifts.

Forklifts and tow motors are the muscle of most warehouses and factories; they come in many sizes, larger forks use larger cylinders. Most average sized forklifts use one 33lb propane cylinder, a forklift with a four-cylinder engine can run for about eight hours on a full 33lb propane cylinder.

Some larger forklifts use a 43lb propane cylinder. These larger forklifts will run for about 6 hours with a 43lb cylinder. Here are some examples of forklift propane cylinder weight and storage capacity:

Proper mounting of cylinders in these machines is essential. Improper mounting can cause interruptions in propane flow or halt flow altogether, is unsafe, and contrary to OSHA regulations and Federal guidelines.

Generator Propane Tanks

propane hose adapter

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Generators convert fuel into electricity; they can be powered by many fuel sources, including diesel, natural gas, gasoline, solar energy, or propane.

Generators can be a lifesaver, whether you have an RV, live in a city with an unreliable electricity supply, or use it as a backup power supply for your home or business. A generator can be an essential tool to keep your home, RV, or business running. With the increase in hurricane activity, propane-powered generators have become popular.

Generators can be powered by steel propane cylinders or ASME tanks, the size of propane tank needed can vary significantly, from a 20lb cylinder for small portable generators to 600lb for large generators. Here are some examples of generator propane tank weight and storage capacity:

  • 52lb steel tank with a storage capacity of 7.9 gallons
  • 65lb steel tank with a storage capacity of 9.8 gallons
  • 72lb steel tank with a storage capacity of 11.2 gallons
  • 97lb steel tank with a storage capacity of 29.3 gallons
  • 257lb steel tank with a storage capacity of 120 gallons
  • 314lb steel tank with a storage capacity of 150 gallons
  • 600lb steel tank with a storage capacity of 300 gallons

Here are some examples of generator propane cylinder weight and storage capacity:

  • 40lb propane cylinder with a storage capacity of 9.2 gallons
  • 60lb propane cylinder with a storage capacity of 13.7 gallons
  • 100lb propane cylinder with a storage capacity of 24.4 gallons
  • 420lb propane cylinder with a larger tank capacity of 100 gallons

If you need help deciding which brass propane fittings to install, check out our blog post on propane fittings.


There are a lot of different kinds of propane tanks create specifically for different applications. Give Propane Warehouse a call or send them an email with any questions on the various propane tanks and cylinders, and of course, get the right propane tank fitting for the application too!