Propane question

Discussion in 'Propane Smokers' started by flyinlizard, May 31, 2013.

  1.   I am brand new to this and wondering how long "approx." will  20lbs of propane  last on a master forge 50.15 unit cooking at temps around 225 for brisket and butts.   Getting my smoker from Lowes next week ,can't hardly wait..
  2. s2k9k

    s2k9k AMNPS Test Group

    I'm not familiar with that smoker but I have a GOSM Widebody vertical and I logged a 20 lb tank once and I quit logging when I hit 42 hours and it probably went another 4 or 5. Cooked at about 215*-250* the whole time.
  3. kathrynn

    kathrynn Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    On my Camp Chef 24"....have a 20lb tank and I have been keeping up with the hours of smoke time....have 28 hours and it's still over half full still.

  4. seenred

    seenred Smoking Guru Group Lead OTBS Member

    I'm right there with Dave.  In my GOSM (not the wide body), I have always averaged around 50 hours of use per tank.

  5. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    You can do several cooks [​IMG]
  6. biteme7951

    biteme7951 Meat Mopper

    The masterforge has a 15000btu burner in it. A "full" 20lb tank has 4.7 gallons of propane in it. a gallon of propane equals 91,600btus So, 4.7gal x 91,600btu/gal=430,520btus per tank. If you ran it wide open (which you should not have to do to maintain 250deg) it would give you a minimum of 28.7hrs run time. 

    Last edited: May 31, 2013
  7.   Thankyou for the info, so I will keep one full tank in reserve plus the one on my grill.
  8. Never hurts to have a tank in reserve.[​IMG]
  9. kathrynn

    kathrynn Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    We are lucky here in Huntsville...our local Costco has a propane refill station.  They will refill a 20 pounder for $9.99....they will refill those huge 100 pound tanks too...don't know the cost tho.

  10. s2k9k

    s2k9k AMNPS Test Group

    :jaw-dropping: WOW that's $2.12/gallon I'm paying $3.59/gallon over here!
  11. kathrynn

    kathrynn Smoking Guru OTBS Member is worth paying the membership for here.  The cheapest I could find around here is at Publix.  They let you turn in empty tanks for filled ones for $17.59.

    I have 4 tanks....and all are filled.  They also check the dates on the tanks and wont fill the ones that are not safe.

  12. biteme7951

    biteme7951 Meat Mopper

    In order to keep the costs down, Costco and many tank refill sites have put less propane in the tank. The weight for a full 20lb refill should be about 19lbs of propane, plus the weight of the empty tank (listed on band of tank as "TW" or tare weight.) Empty tanks are aprox 16lbs. so if you weight your tank when you get home. and it is less than 35lbs,... you been hosed Tommy. You did buy a refilled tank, just not a full one. 

  13. kathrynn

    kathrynn Smoking Guru OTBS Member's full.  I have an engineer for a hubby...and one that does not trust a "good deal"

    He checked and weighed everything before and after.  They are filling it correctly.'s best to be aware anyway!

  14. s2k9k

    s2k9k AMNPS Test Group

    Here they sell it by the gallon and have a gauge when they fill it just like at the gas pump so I know I'm getting what I'm paying for.
    I have read that the exchange tanks are never full.
  15. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Unless you get a deal like Kat, get a fill by per/gallon price and only charge what they fill.

    Uhaul does this but shop around each is different.

    I fill 5 thirty pounders and two twenty pounders sometimes at once.

    I get a price break after so many gallons.

    Propane Weighs 4.24 pounds

    30 pounder is 7.075 gallons

    20 pounder is 4.716 gallons

    $3.95 per/gallon, no price break

    $3.55 per/gallon price breaks are calculated in their computer automatically, call in advance for price

    20 gallon $3.19

    Beware of those exchange places, they are not filled to their 80 percent capacity it is more like 65-70 percent. The only time those exchanges are worthwhile is when your tank is near the end of its life, stamped on the bottle.

    There is also a tear weight on the bottle.
    Last edited: May 31, 2013
  16. kathrynn

    kathrynn Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    You guys are sooo right.  I only go to Publix to return mine now....when the "date" is not acceptable.  The only u-haul place that does the exchanges it wayyy far away from the house.  After the tornados a few years ago...wont ever be out of propane again.  5 days with no power proved that one.

  17. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I know this is not directly related to the question but may help.

    20#     4.7 gal     18 lbs (Tare)     38 lbs  (Fill Wt.)       430,270 (BTU)    18 inches x 12.5 inches  (Dimensions)

    30#     7.1 gal     24 lbs (Tare)     54 lbs  (Fill Wt.)       649,980 (BTU)    24 inches x 12.5 inches (Dimensions)

    40#     9.4 gal     29 lbs (Tare)      70 lbs  (Fill Wt.)      860,542 (BTU)     29 inches x 12.5 inches (Dimensions)

    100#   23.6 gal   68 lbs  (Tare)    170 lbs (Fill Wt.)    2,160,509 (BTU)    48 inches x 14.5 inches (Dimensions)
  18. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Biteme is right on... my camp chef using three burners 30,000 btu each at full will eat a twenty ponder in 4.78 hours

    If doing a lot of long smokes, get a 30 pounder you wont be sorry.
  19. I pay $1.79/ gallon for a tank fill.  Doesn't matter what size tank 20lb-100lb.  (I have a wet line on my house tank [​IMG])
  20. michael ark

    michael ark Master of the Pit

    I have been exchaneing for new tanks at acadmey for $15+tax. I have been getting refills for $12 at ferrell gas.

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