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Author Topic: propane tank icing up  (Read 6221 times)

Slappy

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propane tank icing up
« on: Feb 02, 2007, 03:11 PM »
I am using a Mr. Heater in my hut. It uses one of those little green propane tanks. It's running for about 15 minutes then shuts off. The propane tank is ice cold at this point with frost on the lower half. If I switch tanks, it works again for about 15 minutes. If I put my original tank on at this point, it starts to work again for about 15 minutes.

Anyone know why this is icing up on me and how to prevent it? We have a cold weekend coming up, and I'm not looking forward heater issues.

LoneWolf

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Re: propane tank icing up
« Reply #1 on: Feb 02, 2007, 03:20 PM »

This is just a thought ... I've actually never tried it. The idea was to take a rubber band (or whatever) and secure a hand or foot warmer pack to the canister ... the disposeable kind . They don't get extremely hot, they should last for hours and don't cost too much. As I said ... just a thought.  ;D
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empty hook

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Re: propane tank icing up
« Reply #2 on: Feb 02, 2007, 06:48 PM »
I am using a Mr. Heater in my hut. It uses one of those little green propane tanks. It's running for about 15 minutes then shuts off. The propane tank is ice cold at this point with frost on the lower half. If I switch tanks, it works again for about 15 minutes. If I put my original tank on at this point, it starts to work again for about 15 minutes.

Anyone know why this is icing up on me and how to prevent it? We have a cold weekend coming up, and I'm not looking forward heater issues.
I think the hand warmer is a good idea.  Before I would try that I would try a differant setting for the heat.  I have had tanks frost up but never shut off.

A- bomb

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Re: propane tank icing up
« Reply #3 on: Feb 02, 2007, 07:49 PM »
Frosting on the tank is not causing shut off. Mine are frosty after about 15 min. Never had a shut off. The frost will actually show you about whats left.
make sure your flame is heating the thermo coupler. my pilot orafice got kinda clogged once and the flame didn't hit the coupler. Hot air drew cold air over it and it shut down
Lack of planning on your part in NO way constitutes an EMERGENCY on mine

fozsey

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Re: propane tank icing up
« Reply #4 on: Feb 03, 2007, 05:41 PM »
The boiling point of propane is -42 degrees F give or take a degree or two which means that the colder the propane cylinder the less efficient it is. For example, at a temperature of -50 degrees F, propane will remain in liquid form. The only way to change this state is to either warm it up or increase the pressure which lowers the boiling point. Since we can't safely increase the pressure the only remaining solution is to warm the cylinder. You are probably thinking, "but it is only -2 degrees F today so it could not possibly be caused by the temperature. As liquid propane is released from the cylinder, it changes to a gas to run whatever appliance you happen to be running, in this case a small heater. This changing state from a pressurized liquid to a gas produces a byproduct of extreme cooling. It is possible for the propane cylinder to drop below the -42 degree F threshhold even though the outside temperature is considerably warmer. When the outside temperature is say 10 degrees, the cylinder will stay above the -42 degree F temp but the colder the outside temp the less the warming of the cylinder. Larger storage containers have less of a problem with this simply due to the volume of the cylinder and the cooling produced in that cylinder being spread over a greater area. This means you could move up to a larger cylinder, say a 5# or a 10# when the weather is very cold and the effects of the frozen container will be less noticeable. However if it gets cold enough even a larger container will do the same thing. I use an 11# cylinder during the winter and have had no problems with it. One other thing to consider is the faster the liquid propane moves from the cylinder the greater the cooling effect. This means a higher heat setting will speed up the cooling of the cylinder. The recommended method of thawing frozen cylinders is cold water but this is obviously impractical. The handwarmer might be the ticket... :thumbsup:


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velcro29

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Re: propane tank icing up
« Reply #5 on: Feb 03, 2007, 05:47 PM »
My buddy told me that there was a recall on the Big Mr. Heaters!!!!  His big Mr. Heater was doing the samething.   Do you have the big one or the buddy?
[]

esox slayer

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Re: propane tank icing up
« Reply #6 on: Feb 03, 2007, 05:58 PM »
The boiling point of propane is -42 degrees F give or take a degree or two which means that the colder the propane cylinder the less efficient it is. For example, at a temperature of -50 degrees F, propane will remain in liquid form. The only way to change this state is to either warm it up or increase the pressure which lowers the boiling point. Since we can't safely increase the pressure the only remaining solution is to warm the cylinder. You are probably thinking, "but it is only -2 degrees F today so it could not possibly be caused by the temperature. As liquid propane is released from the cylinder, it changes to a gas to run whatever appliance you happen to be running, in this case a small heater. This changing state from a pressurized liquid to a gas produces a byproduct of extreme cooling. It is possible for the propane cylinder to drop below the -42 degree F threshhold even though the outside temperature is considerably warmer. When the outside temperature is say 10 degrees, the cylinder will stay above the -42 degree F temp but the colder the outside temp the less the warming of the cylinder. Larger storage containers have less of a problem with this simply due to the volume of the cylinder and the cooling produced in that cylinder being spread over a greater area. This means you could move up to a larger cylinder, say a 5# or a 10# when the weather is very cold and the effects of the frozen container will be less noticeable. However if it gets cold enough even a larger container will do the same thing. I use an 11# cylinder during the winter and have had no problems with it. One other thing to consider is the faster the liquid propane moves from the cylinder the greater the cooling effect. This means a higher heat setting will speed up the cooling of the cylinder. The recommended method of thawing frozen cylinders is cold water but this is obviously impractical. The handwarmer might be the ticket... :thumbsup:

You know your propane.  I worked with it for 13 years.  Basically, in colder temps the demand exceeds the vaporization capacity of the small tanks.  2 solutions:  1.turn down the heat demand..2.get a larger tank to run your heater.

The heat packs sound like a good idea, but you'll be able to purchase a new bigger lp tank for a seasons worth of those heat packs, and you'll have the tank for next year.  Esox
Former Jarhead- Semper Fi!!!

Mr.Sodus

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Re: propane tank icing up
« Reply #7 on: Feb 03, 2007, 08:02 PM »
Where's Hank Hill?
Hey Charlie, the kid's got one on over here...Get the hell away from me old man...



rob-s

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Re: propane tank icing up
« Reply #8 on: Feb 04, 2007, 11:01 AM »
Where's Hank Hill?
dang it im sure hes an icefisherman but dont recall the episode :woot:

shawno

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Re: propane tank icing up
« Reply #9 on: Feb 04, 2007, 03:48 PM »
Thanks for the info guys...fozsey...impres sive display of propane knowledge!!  :bow:

I just bought a new Mr. Buddy heater and I was having this same issue.  Purchasing a larger tank will slow down the  freezing process or turning down the heat [ although, that is not always an option ~ especially here in SK ] will also help...

Cheers,

shawno  8)

Skipper

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Re: propane tank icing up
« Reply #10 on: Feb 04, 2007, 05:14 PM »
I had my Mr Buddy doing the same thing. I went to remove the bottle from the heater, and it froze the skin on my fingers! It was just like picking up a chunk of dry ice!! My skin on my fingers turned yellowish orange!! I think I could believe that that bottle was less than -40 degrees! I think it may have something to do with the refrigeration effect of forcing the propane through a small opening. The best way I have found to prevent this is to turn the heater down for a few minutes once in a while.

I am right with Hank Hill on this one ;D

OOPS! I mean Fozey :roflmao:

grumpymoe

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Re: propane tank icing up
« Reply #11 on: Feb 04, 2007, 05:38 PM »
DONT DO THIS!!!!  a number of years ago, we had a home beside a service station that used propane for heat.....of course the large industrial size....temps plummeted overnight to at least -40......looked out the window to see the knucklehead stacking cardboard around each end of the tank and lighting it!!!  :o :o :o  Guess he wanted to be an astronaut!!.....Grump  ::)

MikeVT

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Re: propane tank icing up
« Reply #12 on: Feb 05, 2007, 09:49 AM »
Where's Hank Hill?
Hank Hill is right here.  You need a bigger tank in cold weather.  Take the 20# tank off your bbq and buy the filter system and hose assembly MR Heater sells.  Will take care of your cold weather problems.  When the temperature warms up a bit, you can get away with the little green 1# cyclinders.  If you don't want to cart a 20# cylinder around, you can buy a 10# but it costs a bit more.
GO UCONN HUSKIES!!!

cdc

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Re: propane tank icing up
« Reply #13 on: Feb 05, 2007, 04:19 PM »
I bought a 10# tank 5 yrs back because of this same problem...I manly use my 2 burner camp stove and have a hose that hooks right up to the tank and the regulator in the stove...works great.. The tank holds 1gal. of propain. Will last at least 2 good outtings with lots of use. Its real light weight and easy to pack...The coast was around 50bucks but well worth it..only cost around 3bucks to fill... ;)

Gary Piotrowski

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Re: propane tank icing up
« Reply #14 on: Feb 06, 2007, 09:44 AM »
i was having the same problem last year and i called Mr heater and told them and they said they have a recall on my heater they sent me a new heater within 2 days and i have never had any trouble with it since then
 i would give them a call
                                   Gary

 p.s. my heater is the big buddy

 

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