How To Tell What My BBQ Propane Cylinder Level Is

propane tank tennesseeSummer is almost here, and although we may not be gathering in quite the same way as we have in years past, it’s still a great time to get cooking on your propane grill. Just make sure you have enough propane on board before your next big summer cookout.

Since most propane barbecue cylinders don’t have a gauge, you will need another way to figure out how much fuel is left in your tank. Here are three simple ways to do that.

3 ways to find your propane level

1. Use water. The FiX IT Home Improvement Channel shared this simple trick for determining the approximate level of propane in a tank using a little bit of water.

To do it,

  • Fill a small bucket with hot tap water.
  • Pour the water down the side of the tank.
  • Run your hand along the side of the tank and feel for a cool spot.

The top of the cool spot is the fill level of the tank – it’s cool because liquid propane inside the tank is absorbing the heat from the water, which makes the metal wall of the tank cool to the touch.

2. Use a scale. Most propane grill tanks come with two numbers stamped on the handle – the water capacity (WC) and Tare Weight (TW – the weight of the tank when it’s empty). Most grilling tanks weigh about 17 pounds when empty and hold about 20 pounds of gas. To measure the weight of propane in your tank, just weigh the tank and subtract the TW number. For example, if a tank weighing 27 pounds has a TW of 17 pounds, there’s about 10 pounds of gas left – a little more than half a tank.

3. Use an external gauge. External propane tank gauges come in several different forms, including:

  • Inline pressure gauges, which install between the gas line from the grill and the cut-off valve on the tank; these gauges measure pressure to determine how full the tank is.
  • Propane scales, which look like luggage scales; they are pre-set to take your tank’s tare weight into account.
  • Digital propane tank scales, which provide a digital readout of remaining cook time and gas fill percentage. Some even come with smart phone apps.

Pick the method you like best and give it a go! If you need to refill or recertify your propane cylinder, trust the pros at Admiral Propane.

Need a propane cylinder refill in eastern Tennessee? Visit Admiral Propane’s convenient locations in Blountville (Tri-Cities) & Greeneville. Don’t wait in long lines at your home improvement store – visit Admiral Propane today!