Safely Store Your Propane Tanks

What to do (and what not to do)

tank refills michiganSpring has come to the Tri-County region of Michigan. It’s time to start thinking about spending more time outdoors, and perhaps dusting off that propane grill and other appliances you allowed to hibernate during the winter months.

At Lansing Ice & Fuel, your safety is our priority. So let’s discuss how to safely store your propane tanks. What to do and what not to do.

Small Propane Cylinders

The small, portable propane cylinders you use for small appliances like an outdoor grill are extremely convenient. They’re also relatively inexpensive as compared to the large propane tanks used to heat homes and power large appliances. However, it is always important to keep safety at the forefront of your mind when storing your propane cylinders. It’s also important to know what to do in the case of a leak. Let’s review safety practices for both of those situations.

Storing Your Propane Tanks Safely

Always do the following when storing your propane cylinders:

  • Store your tanks outdoors, not in an enclosed area like a basement, garage, or shed.
  • Keep your propane tanks in a dry, cool place and away from direct sunlight.
  • Keep your propane cylinders away from flames and tools that produce a spark.
  • Store tanks upright and on a level surface.
  • Regularly inspect your tanks and replace any that are damaged.

Avoid doing the following when storing your propane cylinders:

  • Don’t expose your tanks to high temperatures (above 120 degrees Fahrenheit). That could cause a leak or combustion.
  • Don’t keep your extra tanks near the grill.
  • Don’t store your tanks on a surface that gets wet, as that can lead to rusting and pitting—both potentially dangerous.

If There’s a Leak

Propane smells like rotten eggs. If you smell a leak, even just faintly, or if you hear a hissing noise near your tank, take the following immediate steps:

  1. Turn off the valve.
  2. Leave the area and call 911 once you’re a safe distance away.
  3. Do not restart your appliance until a qualified technician has inspected both the tank and the appliance. 

It’s a good idea to test for leaks whenever you’re using a propane tank for the first time after a period of not using it. So before you hook up your tank and fire up the grill on the next warm day, do the following:

  1. Dab a leak detector solution or soapy water on the connector valve and outlet.
  2. Open the cylinder valve and watch for bubbles.
  3. If you see bubbles, close the cylinder valve, tighten the connection, and slowly open the valve again.
  4. If you still see bubbles, make arrangements to have that tank disposed of.

For additional propane safety information, click here.

Tank Refills & Exchanges

When you need more propane, Lansing Ice & Fuel lets you safely and easily refill or exchange your tank. If your empty tank is certified, we’ll safely refill it. Or you can choose the fast and easy option of exchanging your empty propane cylinder for a full one.

Lansing Ice & Fuel is a fifth-generation family-owned business that has been operating for over 110 years in mid-Michigan. We offer our residential and commercial customers fair prices, quality products, and superior customer service.

Contact Lansing Ice & Fuel today to learn more about our propane cylinder exchange and refill services.