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ramblinboy

Driving With Propane On

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How many people drive with their propane tank shutoff? Excellent article on fire prevention for RV'ers in current FMC magazine.

One warning - don't drive with the propane tank on.

I checked and I don't have a three way fridge.

So.... options? Make ice and use a cooler for perishables while traveling and only use propane when parked?

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This has been the subject of discussion for decades.

First, all will agree that when refueling, that all spark-producing or flame-producing appliances should be OFF. This includes turning off the appliances, not just turning off the gas supply to them. A spark ignitor from a propane appliance left on, propane turned off can also ignite a gasoline spill by you or someone else. This includes the refrigerator, water heater, furnaces, aqua-hots, etc.

As far as operating the refrigerator on propane at other times when not around flammables, no clear answer.

Is there a risk-- sure. Is there a risk in operating the main engine on gasoline-- sure. Most consider the risk minimal and acceptable.

As you brought up, are you at greater risk of food poisoning if you turn off the refrigerator while driving-- yes. The relative risks have to be weighed by each of us.

I will suggest that proper propane system and refrigerator maintenance is important to lower the risk factor. No just the risk while driving, but also in using appliances when stopped. This includes pressure testing the propane system at least annually and doing the "burner area tune-up" on the refrigerator annually as called for in your refrigerator owners manual. Are you at more risk in a system that has not been maintained-- yes.

OK, enough facts. My personal opinion, the risk of operating PROPERLY MAINTAINED (which mine are) propane powered appliances in our coach while driving is an acceptable risk to me.

Brett

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When we started out traveling, we had a gas/12V refrigerator and used the 12V when driving. I shut the propane off before we drove as a matter of routine. Then we got our current motor home, no 12V, only 110V AC and propane. So we started keeping the propane on while driving. Recently we replaced our Norcold 1200 with a household refrigerator, 110V AC only. Now we don't really need the propane when driving except when driving in cold weather and using the furnace. I haven't gone back to shutting off the propane but should begin doing that. I hadn't really reconsidered our regular practice of traveling with the propane on. Thanks for bringing this to my attention.

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Great advice Brett! Thanks for clearing up the risk issue. Ill have a look at my fridge manual too - a little maintenance goes a long way especially when there's flame involved! rB

"This has been the subject of discussion for decades.

First, all will agree that when refueling, that all spark-producing or flame-producing appliances should be OFF. This includes turning off the appliances, not just turning off the gas supply to them. A spark ignitor from a propane appliance left on, propane turned off can also ignite a gasoline spill by you or someone else. This includes the refrigerator, water heater, furnaces, aqua-hots, etc.

As far as operating the refrigerator on propane at other times when not around flammables, no clear answer.

Is there a risk-- sure. Is there a risk in operating the main engine on gasoline-- sure. Most consider the risk minimal and acceptable.

As you brought up, are you at greater risk of food poisoning if you turn off the refrigerator while driving-- yes. The relative risks have to be weighed by each of us.

I will suggest that proper propane system and refrigerator maintenance is important to lower the risk factor. No just the risk while driving, but also in using appliances when stopped. This includes pressure testing the propane system at least annually and doing the "burner area tune-up" on the refrigerator annually as called for in your refrigerator owners manual. Are you at more risk in a system that has not been maintained-- yes.

OK, enough facts. My personal opinion, the risk of operating PROPERLY MAINTAINED (which mine are) propane powered appliances in our coach while driving is an acceptable risk to me."

Brett

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