Propane on or off while traveling - OFF!

Glider11Glider11 Posts: 43Member
Before we even get started, I know some travel with their propane ON, so this thread is not intended for you all. SORRY!  I'm having a discussion on other RV FB sites about the importance of turning off the Propane while traveling.  I even had a guy say that NEVER will propane explode. OMG.  So, people who turn theirs OFF, please feel free to give me your more potent, intelligent,thoughtful descriptions, opinions, examples of the NEED to turn off propane while traveling.  

Comments

  • DalehelmanDalehelman Posts: 1,811Member
    If you have any doubts. By all means turn it off.
    1. Hash  [email protected] Fun
  • MuttonChopsMuttonChops Posts: 514Member
    Glider11 said:
    . . . discussion on other RV FB sites about the importance of turning off the Propane while traveling.  I even had a guy say that NEVER will propane explode. . . . . . please feel free to give me your more potent, intelligent,thoughtful descriptions, opinions, examples of the NEED to turn off propane while traveling.  

    Well many states require the propane to be OFF when traveling tunnels,  WS DOT requires propane to be OFF when traveling on a Ferry.  State of Maryland does not allow any Propane Tanks  in the I-95 tunnels - - - Must be good reason for those laws.
    And suppliers like Amerigas say:
    On the Road
    Most RV refrigerators can keep food/beverages cold during several hours of travel without a power source. It is recommended that propane systems be turned off while driving.   https://www.amerigas.com/amerigas-blog/2011/july/rv-propane-safety

    TripSavvy has this:  (but does not reference actual law)
    . . . forgetting to turn your propane tanks off before traveling is one mistake that is easy to make. It's illegal to have your vehicle in motion with your propane tank valves open, and most definitely a risk when traveling through tunnels. It doesn't take much imagination to realize the impossibility of escape from a burning RV in a tunnel, on a bridge, or on the highway, anywhere. Play it safe and prevent fires.https://www.tripsavvy.com/rv-propane-safety-505111


    2018 [email protected] 320 Spitched axle, 3020HE
    TV: 2017 Colorado V6 Z71 4x4, Tow Package, GM Brake Controller
    Adventures:  20       Nights:   91 
  • Sharon_is_SAMSharon_is_SAM Posts: 4,511Moderator
    So, the real issue is keeping the 3 way frig cool during travel.  Some folks advocate pre-chilling and putting frozen milk jugs of water in the frig or running the frig on battery for an hour on and 2 hours off, etc.  Someone found that running the frig off an inverter while towing worked as well.  So, if you can keep the frig cold without propane, there isn’t a good reason to tow with propane running.
    Sharon / 2017 [email protected] CSS / 2015 Toyota Sienna Minivan / Cleveland Heights, Ohio
       
                                           
  • Glider11Glider11 Posts: 43Member
    The issue is not whether or not food is cool, the issue is safety.  I asked that respondents address the safety issue, as I've way too many comments about keeping food chilled. I'm concerned about the safety of others, my safety, and the destruction of my trailer. Thank you for addressing those safety issues. 
  • jgram2jgram2 Posts: 1,336Member
    some who travel with propane On have had to deal with the pilot light blowing out, but that might be the older models. Like many, we cool ours on AC 24 hours before leaving, place a frozen water jug inside and travel with an inexpensive cooler in the tv with a bag of ice for travel food and cocktail ice. Works for us. (Cocktails when camping, not driving!)
    John, Judi, Guinness & OD in PDX
    [email protected]@t 2015 S Max Outback, ‘06 V8 4Runner 


  • Sharon_is_SAMSharon_is_SAM Posts: 4,511Moderator
    I think @MuttonChops covered the legal whys you should not tow with propane running.  Those are all based on the risk of a LPG leak and the possibility of ignition/ explosion under tow.  Not to mention the risk to the first responders who may be at risk of injury/ death related to an explosion.  Oh, and you aren’t supposed to lock your propane tub in case first responders need to access/remove the tanks.
    Sharon / 2017 [email protected] CSS / 2015 Toyota Sienna Minivan / Cleveland Heights, Ohio
       
                                           
  • gulfareagulfarea Posts: 155Member
    My first clam-shell TAB had the 12 volt electric-110 only  and I loved it. My second 2019 has the 3 way & I miss the old one. Art
    2019 Boon-dock Edge
  • pthomas745pthomas745 Posts: 892Member
    There are rules in tunnels, etc.  But, there is no "law."

  • klengerklenger Posts: 287Member
    My fridge runs quite well on 12 VDC, ... often below 32 deg.  

    I do find the nature of this original question interesting.  Sort of like saying "I want to have a debate on this subject so that I know more about it.  Please don't bother responding if you don't agree with me."
    Stuck between "I need to save money" and "you only live once", so I bought the Ford F150 and a nuCamp [email protected] 320 S.
    2019 [email protected] 320 S Boondock Lite / Ford F150 XLT 3.5L 4WD
    SE Tucson AZ, http://klenger.net
  • ObiruObiru Posts: 20Member
    What if you’re traveling and the valve on the propane tank is on but nothing using propane in the [email protected] is turned on?
  • 4ncar4ncar Posts: 542Member
    Obiru said:
    What if you’re traveling and the valve on the propane tank is on but nothing using propane in the [email protected] is turned on?
    That would be considered, “on.”
    TV- '16 Chevy Colorado LT Crew Cab-DuraMax
    2018 320S Outback
  • DigitalSorceressDigitalSorceress Posts: 215Member
    Propane is heavier than air.. it can "collect" at the low points of tunnels.. So, some of it is not that YOUR propane will destroy the world, but that your leaking/losing a tiny bit of propane combined with the 36,000 other people who drove through it all leaking a bit.. it adds up over time if it doesn't vent out.

    Some tunnels actually have a slight curve to them so that the high point is in the middle and the low points are at the ends (mountain tunnels) in part to keep heavier than air gases from accumulating.

    Also traveling means constant hurricane force wind... if your trailer has any drafts it could blow out the pilot and trailer could go boom

    Also, I'm not so convinced the propane mode works all that well if it's out of level and on the road you're out of level.. so there's not a huge benefit to it.

    Mostly I believe the 3 ways are meant to be pre-chilled by 110v or propane before you set out.. make sure you have a good solid, cold thermal mass in there (throw in frozen water jug if room) and then run on 12v while towing.. the TV should keep the battery topped off enough... switch to AC or Propane once you're stopped for the night/ at your destination

    ~Tananda

    2019 [email protected] 320 S Boondock Edge  named "Binky" | TV: 2016 Chevy Colorado Z71 with full tow package and a Leer Cap for lots of storage

    I'm New to nuCamp and TearDrops but have owned a Class A in the past

  • CbusguyCbusguy Posts: 451Member
    edited May 14
    @DigitalSorceress ; when posting and reading here it is best not to assume the OP has any base knowledge.  Common knowledge is very region based,  or activity based.    I have found myself reading questions posted here and going "what the heck an adult doesn't know that?"    But a life long urbanite wouldn't know that propane is heavier than air,   nor would they understand that most 7 wire trailer plugs are not completely wired so you should check them.     


      Many Youtube RVers travel with propane on,   Long honeymoon and Travel with delaney come to mind,  that is the reason he got rid of their prior trailer, propane fridge wouldn't stay lit while traveling.      

    Again there is no right or wrong answer.   I would follow the posted laws and common sense.

    Like klenger  I have my Tow Vehicle wired to provide 12 volts to the trailer and if my fridge didn't run on 12 volts DC I would probably buy an inverter to run it while traveling.      But that is just me.


    2009 GMC Canyon,   3.7 liter with added tranny coolerPower Bastards 250 amp alternator , added 2 gage charging wire to Trailer,  Timbren SES suspension and Super Springs.
    2020 320s Boondock lite, With Lots of mods
  • treefrogtreefrog Posts: 55Member
    We travel propane off as required by Oregon law.
    On longer road trips I run fridge 2 hours on 12v, then 2 hours off.
    This keeps trailer battery charged and food cold.
    2019 [email protected] 400.  2018 4Runner
  • targtarg Posts: 50Member
    I run with it off simply because I'd hate to have an unknown leak and arrive somewhere with an empty tank.
    The capacity to learn is a gift; The ability to learn is a skill; The willingness to learn is a choice. | -REBEC OF GINAZ
    2019 [email protected] 320S BD Lite, Jeep TJU

  • Glider11Glider11 Posts: 43Member
    Thank you for helping me out on the side of "con".  For instance, I did not know that OR law forbids propane being on when traveling.  I wonder if there are sections in all State laws specifically - and all together - for RV travelers?  Probably not.  Understanding how propane settles ad accumulates in tunnels is also helpful.  Never imagined what an "emotional" issue this could be.  I strive to be cautious, rather than sorry. 
  • lkc001lkc001 Posts: 391Member
    Not positive about other states, although I would guess DOT laws preside over state laws, but in Colorado propane must be off if you are going through tunnels.  They used to make the flammable tankers go the long way around instead of through Eisenhower Tunnel, but I believe that now they stop car traffic every so often to let the flammable trucks go through the tunnel alone.  At least that is my understanding.
    2016 Nissan Frontier SV V6 4x4
    Finally!  New Owner of a 2017 Tab 320S! 
    Woohoo!
  • TabberJohnTabberJohn Posts: 431Member
    If you want to be completely safe and "legal" under all driving conditions that means OFF with tub unlocked.
    For one thing there shouldn't be an open flame anywhere near your vehicle while fueling. Example, a pilot light. :open_mouth:
    Another issue is for those who've installed custom tubs. Ventilation should include bottom of the tub so any propane leak would flow out and disperse.
    2015 [email protected] Max S (White/Silver) -> 2014 Ford Escape 2.0L (turbo, AWD, factory tow)
  • pthomas745pthomas745 Posts: 892Member
    If anyone can provide the "law" about propane in Oregon or the Eisenhower Tunnel, I would appreciate seeing them.  A quick google search of those states return nothing about propane in RV's.

  • DigitalSorceressDigitalSorceress Posts: 215Member
    If anyone can provide the "law" about propane in Oregon or the Eisenhower Tunnel, I would appreciate seeing them.  A quick google search of those states return nothing about propane in RV's.
    I take your point.. there's a lot of mention of it being illegal etc, but it's really hard to find the actual statutes. I am NOT a Lawyer / this is not legal advice...

    The closest I can tell, "propane off while traveling" is absolutely the law in some states, but it seems to vary by state.. Just about any tunnel that allows vehicles with propane tanks (some entirely prohibit travel in tunnels with any propane .. even off) requires they be off, limits the number of tanks/total propane... the most comprehensive state by state I could find is here:

    https://www.goodsam.com/article/default.aspx?articleID=2377513

    Note they do not quote sources, but at least here you can CTRL+F for propane and see that a few states have blanket prohibition on open propane.. Likely you'd need to dig into the state statutes to find it since they don't reference.

    ~Tananda

    2019 [email protected] 320 S Boondock Edge  named "Binky" | TV: 2016 Chevy Colorado Z71 with full tow package and a Leer Cap for lots of storage

    I'm New to nuCamp and TearDrops but have owned a Class A in the past

  • CbusguyCbusguy Posts: 451Member
      I don't think it is a sensitive issue,  But the way the opening post was written and the title for the thread.

    Honestly folks are going to do what they find works for them regardless of laws or anything written here.
    2009 GMC Canyon,   3.7 liter with added tranny coolerPower Bastards 250 amp alternator , added 2 gage charging wire to Trailer,  Timbren SES suspension and Super Springs.
    2020 320s Boondock lite, With Lots of mods
  • tabiphiletabiphile Posts: 104Member
    The fact of the matter is that many RVers do travel with the propane on. It's quite common. Safe? Not too...there is the concern that fragile lines could leak and accumulate spark ready gas... in an accident you are creating a hazard for responders. Arguing about it? Why? People that run with it on have probably been doing it forever and won't stop no matter how many reasons you offer.
    If you do decide to run with the propane on you must be sure to turn your pilot off if you enter a gas station. Pumping gas with an open flame is unsafe and illegal...you will need to pull over and refire after you leave the service station. It's also a good idea to learn the laws where you are going and abide..and finally, your propane sensor will trip if you have a low battery or if you are unplugged from the 7 pin...be aware.
  • pthomas745pthomas745 Posts: 892Member
    @DigitalSorceress I found that article too, and the "propane off" references seemed to be mostly in Canada. 

  • DigitalSorceressDigitalSorceress Posts: 215Member
    @DigitalSorceress I found that article too, and the "propane off" references seemed to be mostly in Canada. 
    Indeed.. I appreciate the "show me the statute"  / "show me the peer reviewed journal" response to any claims of legal/scientific truths..

    However, I know I will always travel with mine off.. I don't have to have it be illegal for it to make sense.. and it means I'm in automatic compliance with any jurisdiction I travel though that requires it off..  Just need to watch for "can't have any in this tunnel" warnings and "can't have more than this much" if I'm carrying a spare or two for a long boondock.

    ~Tananda

    2019 [email protected] 320 S Boondock Edge  named "Binky" | TV: 2016 Chevy Colorado Z71 with full tow package and a Leer Cap for lots of storage

    I'm New to nuCamp and TearDrops but have owned a Class A in the past

  • jkjennjkjenn Posts: 5,390Member
    The State Lines app, designed for RVers, breaks down the laws by state. It was developed by Chris and Cherie from Technomadia.

    Jenn Grover | 2015  [email protected] 320 S Silver/Turquoise Trim | 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trailhawk v6 | Nights spent in [email protected]: 188 | Pittsburgh PA

  • Glider11Glider11 Posts: 43Member
    Thanks, JKJenn for information on the State Lines app by Chris & Cherie. So much to learn; too much procrastination. 
     
  • Jackie_DaveJackie_Dave Posts: 27Member
    Just purchased the State Lines app. It doesn't mention propane for any state, if it's legal on, off or otherwise. 
    2018 [email protected] 320-S / 2017 Ford Escape Eco-Boost
    Harpers Ferry, WV
  • CbusguyCbusguy Posts: 451Member
    edited May 17
    @Jackie_Dave priceless

    These threads are always entertaining.    Sorry the app didn't have the info you were seeking.   

    2009 GMC Canyon,   3.7 liter with added tranny coolerPower Bastards 250 amp alternator , added 2 gage charging wire to Trailer,  Timbren SES suspension and Super Springs.
    2020 320s Boondock lite, With Lots of mods
  • Glider11Glider11 Posts: 43Member
    Jackie_Dave, that is really bad, to purchase and not have the info you wanted! 
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