Propane gas is one of the cleanest and most affordable fuels available. Many people use propane every day in their homes and for their jobs. Maintaining your propane cylinder and knowing how to use propane safely is important, especially if you use a gas grill or deep-fryer. Follow these tips for knowing if your propane cylinder is safe enough for you to use without dangerous accidents.
Starting At The Top
Every propane cylinder should have a collar at the top for guarding the valves you use to turn on the flow of gas. Your propane cylinder could end up being a serious safety hazard if some parts of it are damaged or missing. For example, if a cylinder with a rusted or missing collar is knocked over, the valve could be bent enough to cause propane to flow out fast. Not only is this a fire hazard near sparks or open flames, the cylinder itself can become a projectile due to high pressure of propane gas. The high pressure in propane cylinders can be strong enough to propel the cylinder forward or through the air, turning it into a deadly projectile.
Looking Closely At The Cylinder
Most propane cylinders used by consumers are for gas grills or deep fryers. For this reason, a cylinder may be carried about to camping and picnic grounds. Always make sure your cylinder is secured before transporting it to prevent it from turning over. Also, when a cylinder begins to rust and has pits in its surface, you risk gas leaking out in the areas of the cylinder it weakens. In fact, in most regions, propane professionals will not refill a rusted tank or one that pits in it. Escaping propane gas can be the cause of a serious explosion when you light your grill or fryer. Always take the time to routinely inspect your propane cylinder for rust, especially if your grill remains outdoors year round.
A Damaged Foot Ring Can Be Dangerous
The foot ring on the bottom of your propane cylinder plays an important role in the safe use of your propane cylinder. If the foot ring on your cylinder is loose or falls off, you should know it will be illegal to have it refilled. When a foot ring is gone or parts of it damaged, like by rust, it can cause the cylinder to lean, creating the risk of it falling over and having the top hardware damaged or knocked off. A foot ring also works to keep your cylinder off the ground so it has fewer chances of contacting moisture and rusting. If there was a serious spot of rust on the bottom of your cylinder you were unaware of and you lit your grill or fryer, you could get seriously injured if propane had already begun to leak out of the rusted area.
Making sure you take care of your propane cylinder can mean you getting years of safe use out of it. If you are unsure about your cylinder and its condition, discussing its condition with a propane professional, such as Anderson's Propane, can help you determine whether or not you should go ahead and replace it.