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LP Tank Liquid Level Measurement


dewdev
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It would be nice to have some reliable way to measure the amount of propane in the Ollie propane tanks. (another new toy). I believe I have seen this topic on the forum in the past, but could not find it when I did a search.

My present procedure is to put hot water on the side of the tank and look at where the frost forms on the side of the tank to indicate where the propane level is in the tank. Short of that my general procedure is when one tank is empty switching to the other tank and getting the empty one filled. For longer camping trips, I like to start with 2 full tanks, but am sick of taking the active LP tank to be filled when it is only half empty.

I would like to have a more scientific system with some type of device to actually measure the liquid level without having to cut in gauges in the feed lines. I could then easily monitor the amount of LP being used each day and project when to get the tank filled.

One device I have found onlline is the "AP Products 024-1001 Propane Tank Gas Level Indicator" which connects via a magnetic to the bottom of the tank with the level reading shown on your smart phone. The reviews of this device are mixed with some saying they are great and others say the device works at first then after awhile the sendor does not work. 

What does Ollie owners do or have bought to reliabily measure LP liquid in your LP tanks? 

2018 Oliver Elite II, Twin Bed, Hull #354 

2018 RAM 1500 Rebel 4 x 4, 5.7 Hemi, 3.92 gear ratio

Maine

 

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I have used the Mopeka Tank Check for almost three years now.  It is not perfect, but I do like it and it does give me fairly accurate readings.

The two negatives for me are:

- Around or below freezing, it registers lower than the actual amount in the tank.

- The batteries need to be changed too frequently.  About every 6 and 9 months. 

I did have a problem with one of my original sensors and contacted Mopeka.  They immediately sent me two new sensors and said they were an improved version.  No problems since.

I would definitely purchase the Tank Check again.

Andrew 

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Andrew, Carianne and Buffy | San Diego, CA


2019 Legacy Elite II Hull #468 "California Burrito" | 2018 BMW x5 35d 

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I've had no problems with my Mopeka system for the past three years or so. I do not like using my phone as a monitor for anything. I bought the wireless display and mounted it inside the trailer. I have to change the batteries at least once a year.

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Steve, Tali and the dogs: Reacher and Rocky plus our beloved Storm, Maggie and Lucy (all waiting at the Rainbow Bridge)

2008 Legacy Elite I - Outlaw Oliver, Hull #026 | 2014 Legacy Elite II - Outlaw Oliver, Hull #050 | 2022 Silverado High Country 3500HD SRW Diesel 4x4 

 

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2 hours ago, ScubaRx said:

 I do not like using my phone as a monitor for anything. 

I haven't installed my system yet, but will soon, I like the app option. Rather than using my iPhone, I will use the iPad Mini 2 that I installed in place of the Zamp solar controller. I can view two apps simultaneously, for example Garmin Earthmate (to send text messages through my inReach communicator) and the Victron Connect battery monitor app. . I will post a new thread about the Mopeka sensors, eventually.

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John Davies

Spokane WA

 

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"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

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Would someone answer the question for me, if the regulator valve is turned down and not turned to the right, or left does it draw from both tanks at the same time. 

trainman

Elite II, Twin Bed, Hull #489, 2019 RAM 1500, 5.7 Hemi, 4X4, Crew Cab, 5'7" bed, Towing Package, 3.92 Gears.

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I’ve been using a similar device to the one Mossey featured above, but made by Dometic. It is easy to use and provides an accurate assessment of the tank levels. Regardless of the brand, each seem to be comparable in function and pricing.

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1 hour ago, Trainman said:

Would someone answer the question for me, if the regulator valve is turned down and not turned to the right, or left does it draw from both tanks at the same time. 

trainman

Never have tried the neutral position because the Fairview instructions do not mention that setting.

Mossey

Fairview LP Gas Regulator.pdf

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Mike and Krunch   Lutz, FL  
2017 LEII #193 “the dog house”

 

 

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At initial hook up,  whichever regulator input is pressurized first becomes the "active" side. Then, when the selector is moved to the center (auto) position, the other input becomes the "reserve" side. When pressure on the active side tank drops to a predetermined level, the auto changeover valve will switch to the reserve side tank. Whenever one of the  tanks is removed for refilling, the selector should first be moved from auto to the tank that will remain in use. After the refilled tank is put back in service, it will become the reserve once  the selector lever is moved back to the auto position.

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Thanks bhnch for the great explanation, I am now going to go out a check my bottles to see how much is in each one and set my valve to the lower bottle for first use. One quick question, do I turn on the reserve bottle before moving the selector to the center position, or after I move it to the center position for auto setup. Thanks trainman

Elite II, Twin Bed, Hull #489, 2019 RAM 1500, 5.7 Hemi, 4X4, Crew Cab, 5'7" bed, Towing Package, 3.92 Gears.

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4 hours ago, bhncb said:

At initial hook up,  whichever regulator input is pressurized first becomes the "active" side. Then, when the selector is moved to the center (auto) position, the other input becomes the "reserve" side.

That doesn't sound right to me, at least with a Fairview. We have the same regulator on our fifth wheel. Point the lever at the tank you want to use first. When it's empty, the red indicator will show and the regulator will switch to the other tank. Before disconnecting the empty tank, turn the lever to the other tank, which now becomes the primary. There is no center position for the lever. The pdf in Mossey's post says the same thing.

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Stephanie and Dudley from CT.  2022 LE2, Hull #1150: Eggcelsior.

Tow vehicle: 2016 GMC Sierra 6.0 gas dually 4x4.

Our Oliver journey: Steph and Dud B's RV Screed

Where we've been RVing since 1999:

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1 hour ago, Trainman said:

do I turn on the reserve bottle before moving the selector to the center position

First, I stand corrected. The Fairview regulators operate as described, which may explain why the BTU capacity is reduced once an auto changeover occurs and why the lever must be pointed toward the active tank before the opposite one can be disconnected. If the lever has to be manually switched to regain full BTU capability, and shut off backflow to the other port, it seems to me the Fairview regulator is more semi-automatic in operation. The BTU reduction could explain some of the reported propane delivery problems at low temperature and/or high altitude. I routinely experience both and never had a problem prior to replacing my original Fairview. But then, I generally start looking for a refill before an auto changeover happens.

It's somewhat moot now but in response to Trainman's question:  Generally the lever would be moved after the reserve tank is opened. The sequence may not matter but the regulator relies on pressure differential in determining when to switchover. A sudden surge from opening the tank valve may fool it, causing an unnecessary and undesirable switchover. 

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The most fool proof, easiest, least expensive way to monitor propane tank levels is to simply leave one tank's valve closed.  When the cooktop will not light then switch to the other tank and get the first tank refilled.  😇

Bill

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2017 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

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38 minutes ago, topgun2 said:

The most fool proof, easiest, least expensive way to monitor propane tank levels is to simply leave one tank's valve closed.  When the cooktop will not light then switch to the other tank and get the first tank refilled.  😇

It’s worked well for me.

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1 hour ago, topgun2 said:

The most fool proof, easiest, least expensive way to monitor propane tank levels is to simply leave one tank's valve closed.  When the cooktop will not light then switch to the other tank and get the first tank refilled.  😇

Bill

Very fool proof.   It's what we have done for years too. 

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John and Debbie, Beaverton, Oregon,  2017 Ford Expedition EL 4x4 with heavy duty tow package. 

Present trailer, 2003 Coleman tent trailer

Oliver Elite II is on my wish list

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2 hours ago, topgun2 said:

The most fool proof, easiest, least expensive way to monitor propane tank levels is to simply leave one tank's valve closed.

I know a lot of people do that but we've always run both tanks on and checked the little red changeover indicator every day or two when using a lot of propane. Never ran dry in 20 years. Would hate to find out we're out of propane when the furnace quits at 2:00 AM.

Stephanie and Dudley from CT.  2022 LE2, Hull #1150: Eggcelsior.

Tow vehicle: 2016 GMC Sierra 6.0 gas dually 4x4.

Our Oliver journey: Steph and Dud B's RV Screed

Where we've been RVing since 1999:

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I’ve been using both my hand and recently my laser temp reader.  
 

I pour a cup of hot water on the tank and scan down the side until the temp drops and stays solid.   Works well. 

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2019 Elite II (Hull 505 - Galway Girl - August 7, 2019 Delivery) 
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