Propane tank on a 1976 Dodge RV


Old 08-02-05, 11:13 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: USA
Posts: 18
Propane tank on a 1976 Dodge RV

I just purchased a 1976 Dodge Couchman RV. It's in great shape with only 39000 original miles on it. The problem is the horizontal propane tank on/off valve leakes very bad as soon as I atempt to open it. I am pleased that it has gas still in it but need to repair it. Question 1 : Is this tank valve a repairable or replaceable part ? 2: Will I have problems with refilling stations with this tank ? New tanks of the portable type all have new anti overflow valves on them. This tank is not portable, but is attached to the frame under the vehicle. With remote ports for filling. One is the refill conector and the other is a overflow full port ,also the leaking on/off valve .
Thanks Phil
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Old 08-04-05, 09:00 AM
Join Date: May 2001
Posts: 516
Change the valve to the new overflow type and be done with it. You can't get your tank filled if you have the old style valve.
Old 08-04-05, 09:36 PM
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: usa
Posts: 33
The tank you described is an ASME tank. The type of service valve you have has nothing to do with filling an ASME tank. However replacing the service valve is not really a DIY kind of operation, Especially when the tank has propane in it. Vented to the atmosphere the gas can find a source of ignition and explode or flash over. Attempt to remove that valve without emptying the tank first and it will shoot out like a bullet. Followed by liquid propane vaporizing at -44 degrees farenheight. Thats right 44 degrees below zero. Doesnt matter what the temp the gas is inside the tank it will drop to that as it boils off. It will freeze your skin instantly. There are too many things to look for and remember to check to list here. Dents at welds, excessive rust, ect will take the tank out of service. Take it to your local propane supplier and they will (or at least should) be able to at least inspect the tank for you and determine if it is worth saving or even can be saved. A properly trained filling station attendant will refuse to fill a tank that exceedes limits and rules on rust, dents, mountings, ect. Dont spend your money fixing something unless you know that it can legally be filled. have it checked to be sure. It souldn't cost you anything just to have someone look at it and say yes it is fillable or no you cant have that filled.
The valve must be for an ASME tank, NOT a D.O.T. The valves are not the same at all and will not interchange. If you do find someone to sell you a valve, and you find a way to safely empty that tank, changing it is straight foreward (be certain it is empty!! the tank can "freeze" and still have liquid in it if the gas escapes or is removed too quickly even though it doesn't seem to have any pressure left). leak checking it once again involves a trip to the propane filling station or supplier. Make sure the person filling the tank knows that you have changed the valve and that it needs leak check'd. You don't want to fill the tank only to then discover your valve replacement job leaks. It would also be a good idea to have or do a full line of tests on the propane system of the unit. A check for proper pressure at rest and under a load, and a system leak check. There are a number of good books for RV DIY'ers shop around and read up. Manometers are not hard to make or use. Don't take propane lightly! It is a wonderful fuel when handled and used properly. It is also deadly if mishandled or misused. We tend to take things that are everywhere around us for granted. educate yourself with something that can show (pictures ect) you what to look for and "how to" correctly. A good book will prove its worth far beyond this first job.

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