# How much do propane tanks weigh?

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• posted on July 3, 2008, 2:08 pm
The barbeque sized ones; about how much are they full and empty?
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• posted on July 3, 2008, 2:11 pm

10/30 (approximate)
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• posted on July 3, 2008, 2:30 pm

Just guessing, but another way to see how much is left is to observe the condensation on the outside of the tank after the grill's been on for a little while. If the humidity's so low that you observe no condensation, feel the tank carefully and notice where the cold begins.
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• posted on July 3, 2008, 2:48 pm
The MT weight is stamped on the jug. the full weight is the MT weight plus the capacity.
s

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• posted on July 3, 2008, 6:40 pm
The TW number is "tare weight", or empty weight.
The full weight, is that plus 16 pounds, for the twenty pounders. I'll admit, I don't know the actual numbers.
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Christopher A. Young
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• posted on July 3, 2008, 2:52 pm
jack wrote:

Look for the letters "TW" (tare weight) stamped near the top of the tank. Right after that is stamped the empty weight in pounds. The barbecue sized tanks are nominally 20 pound capacity tanks, which means that you can put in slightly less that 20 pounds of propane.
Typical numbers might be (YMMV): 19 pounds empty, 38 pounds full.
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• posted on July 3, 2008, 2:55 pm
jack wrote:

My tank holds about 5lbs of propane. I don't know its empty weight but you should be able to websearch that.
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• posted on July 3, 2008, 3:01 pm

If it really matters, the next time you have an empty tank, take the bathroom scale outside and set the tank on the scale. When you fill it, weigh it again. If your scale won't function at that low weight step on the scale holding the tank, subtract your weight from the reading, repeat with filled tank. HTH
Joe
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• posted on July 3, 2008, 3:18 pm

Just curious - why do you want to know?
Really - just curious - the answer could be interesting.
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• posted on July 3, 2008, 4:03 pm
wrote:

Just curious - why do you want to know?
Really - just curious - the answer could be interesting. ---------------------------- I had two tanks in my garage. They felt too heavy to be empty, but not heavy enough to be full. Turns out my "arm scale" is wrong; the bathroom scale says they are empty. Full now.
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• posted on July 3, 2008, 4:11 pm

If you pick up a propane tank and "swish it around", you can hear if there is any propane left in it unless it's a very small amount.
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• posted on July 3, 2008, 4:34 pm
std "grill/BBQ" tank aka 5 gal or 20 lb tank
17 lb to 18 lb empty, 35-40 lb "full"
add 4.24 lbs per gallon in the tank, 4.8 gal is about the limit with an OPD valve. Need space at top of tank for expansion on hot days.
tricks, use electronic platform scale, place empty tank, hit "zero", get it filled and read how many pounds remain, +/- if tank temp is hot or cold. we use this on our small shop heater tank.
-- larry/dallas
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• posted on July 7, 2008, 6:12 am
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I have found that it is always good to know how full/empty they are before taking them in, just so you know you aren't being overcharged. Some places, too, have a minimum charge. With gas prices going up, no sense paying even more.
Steve
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• posted on July 7, 2008, 2:19 pm
There's no need to 'take them in' unless they are empty. and if they are empty, it will be obvious.
s

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• posted on July 3, 2008, 8:46 pm

The last one I had that was empty weighed exactly 17 lbs. 14 oz. on my refrigerant scale which is fairly accurate. The new one weighed 37 lbs. 4.5 oz. full, and the tare weight is listed as 17 lbs. Which gives a net of 20 lbs and 4.5 oz. of propane which is interesting because it's sold as 17 lbs. net weight, as many exchange cylinders are now (Blue Rhino, etc.).
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• posted on July 3, 2008, 8:52 pm
OOPS..my math is off.....37 lbs. 4.5 oz. minus 17 lbs. 14 oz. is net weight of 19 lbs. 6.5 oz. :-(

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• posted on July 3, 2008, 8:56 pm
Here's an interesting link on filling propane cylinders and how much a cylinder holds, water capacity, tare weight, etc. http://www.propane101.com/propanecylinderfilling.htm

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• posted on July 4, 2008, 3:11 pm
Totally useful information. Thanks.
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Christopher A. Young
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• posted on July 7, 2008, 6:16 am

It's deceiving. IF the geek fills your tank by the book, they don't fill it to 100%, but rather 80 or 85 to allow for thermal expansion if the tank gets hot. This coupled with filling a partially full tank, and trying to do the math on the fly with those meters that all seem to be ancient can give some questionable answers.
They usually ask two questions ...... you want it ........ or not?
Steve
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• posted on July 7, 2008, 10:33 am

You must live in a very backwards area. Around here where everybody gets past the 3rd grade before they turn 16, they use a scale when filling propane tanks. Set the tank on the scale, note it's weight and then fill it until it reaches it's "full" weight, which is stamped on the tank. Very complicated.
Sheesh.